TKC SUNDAY SPECIAL!!! TOURIST CONFESSIONAL: CUSTOMER SERVICE SUCKS IN MIDTOWN KANSAS CITY!!!
It seems that quite a few of the alleged 24 million tourists who supposedly visit Kansas City every year aren't very happy with their experience in our cowtown and we recently received an interesting note regarding the allegedly surly service industry denizens hardly working inside some of the hipster establishments within the Midtown corridor.
To wit . . .
CHECK THIS EXCLUSIVE KANSAS CITY SUNDAY CONFESSIONAL CASTIGATING TRENDY SERVICE INDUSTRY WORKERS IN THE HEART OF THE CITY!!!
Here's the word:
"Hello TKC, I just wanted to drop you a line about my experience visiting your town that I think you might find interesting given what I've seen of your page.
"For the past week I've been visiting my husband's family in Kansas City and I just want to let you know that KC has the worst servers, baristas and bartenders of any city in the nation working the midtown area. I've had the good fortune to travel around the nation for both business and vacation and my experience in KC this week has me convinced that your little town has grown too big for your britches when most of the Crossroads servers expect a 30% tip and refuse to offer even a smile in return for it.
"One place after the next this week the wait staff seemed like nothing but a bunch of entitled little snobs and they were throwing just as much attitude the way of customers as I've experienced at some of the best restaurants in Manhattan. The bars aren't that much better. In both the Crossroads and Westport, the staff doesn't even wait until people are out of earshot to start goofing on patrons and giving them not so clever nicknames. The level of attitude in KC bars is disgusting given what I've seen from these small towners in the hipster joints. Mind you that I've lived in Brooklyn, NYC in the heart of Williamsburg for 10 years now and people in my neighborhood are a lot more friendly than what I've seen in Kansas City. If our hipsters even attempted the attitude that yours regularly display they'd be laughed out of the neighborhood. This kind of thing would be comical if these KC service industry workers didn't take themselves so seriously.
"I understand from reading your blog that crime might be a part of it but believe me there is crime in my native Chicago and NYC but people working in trendy restaurants still manage to treat each other with more respect and courtesy than what I've seen in your "hip" restaurants in KC which are nothing more than copycats of better places on the east coast.
"This week I've seen too many examples of this attitude than I care to remember but I'll give you a quick list.
* The servers at one of the highly recommend pizza place in the Crossroads won't stop talking to their friends while taking an orders. I felt like I was intruding on their conversation by simply telling the waiter what I wanted for lunch.
* In the P&L District the bartenders want their tip BEFORE they serve drinks. Never seen anything like that anywhere and I could not get a 2nd drink without forking over 5 bucks to some musclebound jerk with a bad haircut and worse teeth. Apparently his gym membership didn't come with a guide to basic grooming or common courtesy.
* I had a mixed experience on the Plaza but the chain restaurants are pretty much the same all over the country. On Friday, my husband took me to one of the local high end establishments and the waiter started off the evening with an insult, suggesting that I try the white zin while flashing me an heavy dose of shade that he didn't think I would notice. I did. And I was more than happy to tell my husband to nix the gratuity. He begrudgingly did so because we don't plan to ever eat at this overpriced steakhouse again.
"I don't want to seem bitter and I will tell you that once you get out of Midtown people somehow turn much nicer. In fact, some of the fast food places in the suburbs, people were downright pleasant and showed the kind of friendliness that I'd expect from a place like KC.
"My theory to explain this behavior is simple and I think you might agree: The hipsters in KC think way too much of themselves and they mistakenly believe they're too good to work at the only sh*tty jobs that they're qualified to hold. I don't understand this because in New York and LA the servers are going out on auditions and at least trying to find more high profile gigs in their artistic endeavors, in KC these people just seemed like entitled, slightly older than millennials acting like they were better than their customers.
"I'm guessing that a lot of your readers might have run into this kind of thing as well and it helped to write down my experience. If I can offer any advice to people in KC to turn the tide, it's this: Call people on their holier than thou attitude. Nobody is too good to wait tables, get coffee or serve drinks whether it's in a greasy spoon or a hipster cafe. You'd think that some of these people would take a bit of pride in their work but by and large the nicer the restaurant in KC, the worse the service. That's something that people don't talk about but it was a big surprise for me to witness in the heart of America and in the KC midtown area . . ."
So . . .
ARE HIPSTER CREATIVE CLASS SERVERS IN TRENDY KANSAS CITY PLACES GIVING KANSAS CITY HOSPITALITY A BAD NAME???
We've heard similar complaints but never so vivid. It seems that KC touting our creative class might have given a few folks an over-inflated sense of importance that could hurt small biz throughout Midtown.
You decide . . .