Rose's Argument

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In his chapter “The working life of a waitress” describing the experiences of his mother and six other waitresses, Rose (2004) argues that the position of a waitress requires a larger spectrum of intellectual abilities than one would perceive (p.2). Rose’s argumentation is based on four criteria; the ability to understand and navigate through a structured environment (p.6); the necessity of having a good memory to recollect routines, menu items and customer’s requests (p.10); the cognitive abilities required to perform effectively, in order to satisfy every customer (p.13); and the social and emotional skills needed to successfully please each customer accordingly (p.19). Firstly, Rose states that a restaurant has a “structured environment”,…show more content…
These abilities are “profoundly goal-directed: to make their work efficient and to enhance their tips.” (p.10). As a line cook in a restaurant, I would agree with Rose’s argumentation that the intellectual abilities required to be a waitress are overlooked in the workforce. However, it could be argued that the back-of-house staff (line cooks, prep cooks, dishwashers, etc.) require the same intellectual abilities, yet we are not given as much credit for our work. I believe that Rose fails to recognize the importance of the chefs, who must prepare food that is aesthetically pleasing in a timely manner. Also, chefs are required to memorize every ingredient in each dish in case of allergies or finicky customers. Then, the cooks must be attentive on the multiple dishes that they are preparing, while deciding which orders should be prioritized. Yet, we are not even given the opportunity to enhance our income based on our performance. From my experience, the chefs are the ones who are at fault if customers are displeased due to waiting times or mistakes in orders, regardless of whether the waitress had made a mistake. To be fair, Rose’s mother’s experiences with the chefs may differ from the waitresses today, because of the gender biases towards women in her era
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