catapult magazine

catapult magazine


whatever happened to servanthood?


Feb 20 2002
08:46 am

From Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America, in which she chronicles her attempt to survive for a year working low-paying jobs ($6-$7/hr.). On her experience as a waitress:

“There are the traditional asshole types—frat boys who down multiple Buds and then make a fuss because the steaks are so emaciated and the fries so sparse—as well as the variously impaired—due to age, diabetes, or literacy issues—who require patient nutritional counseling. The worst, for some reason, are the Visible Christians—like the ten-person table, all jolly and sanctified after Sunday night service, who run me mercilessly and then leave me $1 on a $92 bill. Or the guy with the crucifixion t-shirt (SOMEONE TO LOOK UP TO) who complains that his baked potato is too hard and his iced tea too icy (I cheerfully fix both) and leaves no tip at all. As a general rule, people wearing crosses or WWJD? (‘What would Jesus do?’) buttons look at us disapprovingly no matter what we do, as if they were confusing waitressing with Mary Magdalene’s original profession.”