Many people take themselves too seriously. They sometimes think they are better than they really are. When they get a nice job and a good salary, they adopt a swagger. They walk into a restaurant thinking they own the place, and when drinks are slow in arriving, they are vociferous in their disgust.
This situation reminds me of a story that a friend told me, and I would like to share it with you. As it goes, a man (“Showboat”) decides to wield his power during dinner at a restaurant with colleagues. He is unhappy that the service is falling short of his expectations.
Showboat: How long ago did we order our drinks?
Colleague: A few minutes ago.
Showboat: Don’t these people know that we need our drinks right away? This is ridiculous! I’ve been coming to this place for years. I’ve given so much money to this restaurant. I’m going to call the owner and tell him that he is doing a poor job. You would think that they would know me by now. When I walk in, my martini should be waiting for me.
Colleague: Really … he just took the drink order. It is a bit busier tonight. If we give them a couple more minutes, we will have the drinks.
Showboat: A couple minutes … a couple minutes … a couple minutes … no way! I’m far too important to wait that long for my drinks. Think about how long it will take to get my food. My time is worth far more to me. The people around here are hourly workers, so they don’t care how long it takes. Look at them! They are walking around with stupid smiles on their faces. This is far from funny to me.
Colleague: Well, Randy … why don’t you cut them some slack. I’m sure they will be here soon.
[The drinks arrive, and Showboat is placated … for the moment. The waiter takes the food order, and the service is quick. Within 10 minutes, their food is on the table. However, Showboat is unhappy because the butter is missing. He wants it now! He motions for the waiter to come over.]
Showboat: Sir, do you know that the butter is missing?
Waiter: Let me get that for you right away.
[Irritated, Showboat wants to make a point to the waiter.]
Showboat: Sir, I don’t think you know who I am! Let me tell you. I own two businesses here in town. I have a membership at an exclusive gold club. I frequently travel to Europe, Asia, and Africa. I own one of the biggest houses in this town. That’s who I am! When I ask for butter, it’s important that I get it right away!
Waiter: Sir, I don’t think you know who I am.
Showboat: You got me there. I don’t know who you are.
Waiter: I’m the guy in charge of the butter!
What’s the point here? Even if you own the biggest house, play golf with the rich, and travel the world, but you must avoid getting a big head. When you do, the guy in charge of the butter can quickly deflate your prominence.