My voice is pitched low. Not so low that I am mistaken for male on the telephone, but lower (and I like to think softer) than the average female voice. When Daughter was small, she came home from school one day crying because the other girls teased her because her voice was low. She said the other girls' voices were much higher than hers.
She and I both cringe when we hear women speak with high squeaky voices. It sounds so fake to us, and we think it makes them sound, uh, not worthy of serious consideration.
Well, I took Suzie for service today. The waiting room was cool, but not uncomfortably cold, until a woman came to the door that opened outside, and called for someone. And then she stood there for the longest time, leaning against the door with it fully open, we're talkin' 90 degrees off the wall, for no apparent reason, looking off into the parking lot. Freezing wind blew in. The waiting customers looked at each other, but no one said anything, probably because the woman holding the door was scary. She looked tough, mean, like switchblade mean, not an employee of the shop, and she was unsmiling. There was anger in her voice when she had called out, and it was obvious she didn't give a damn about anyone.
I was getting the full brunt of the wind, and finally I said, "Excuse me? Could you please close the door?"
I noticed that I had pitched my voice an octave above normal.
My normal tone would have been much more commanding.
I immediately wondered why I did that.
I had affected a more "feminine" voice because she scared me. The higher pitch was calculated to make me less of a threat, to make it more of a request than a demand. It said, "Please don't hurt me, but, uh, ...."
I am slightly ashamed. All those women who cultivate artificially high simpering voices, and all those men who find high voices appealing, should be ashamed, too.
After I left the service station I went to the ATM at my bank. I had noticed I had only $13 in my purse, and I want to visit Daughter tomorrow, staying over into Monday. The ATM wouldn't let me take any money out, claiming that I had "exceeded my daily withdrawl limit or the maximum number of daily transactions." Ack! I tried three times, making sure I had the right card, the right account, and the right pin. I had to stop then, or they'd decide my card was stolen, and deactivate it entirely.
There was a man in line behind me, so I told him what had happened. He could withdraw money, so it's my account, not the system.
As soon as I got home, I checked the account online. There has been no activity of any kind on that account since Wednesday's deposits.
It'll be Monday before I can find out what's going on. In the meantime, I have no cash, and no easy way to get any.
Something odd has been happening lately. The first time or two I thought it was an accident, but by the sixth or seventh time, I think there's something else going on.
I go out for dinner two or three times a week lately, and over the past six months I've noticed a few odd things. The first is a definite deterioration in service. Several times our waiter or waitress seemed to have completely disappeared. One time The Man and I couldn't find our waitress for 45 minutes at a clip, and then when she eventually brought the bill, she'd left off half our food and drinks. When we couldn't find her to correct it, we just shrugged and let it go. That's the other oddity - items have been left off the tab in at least one out of every three outings, in restaurants from Rhinebeck to Albany, in diners to linen tablecloth establishments, from large to small groups. Usually it's things like appetizers, sides, or desserts, or drinks. Or all four.
There was the night we waited 50 minutes for the food to arrive. And the night the waitress got every item so wrong we were convinced she'd mixed up two tables. And the night the credit card disappeared on the way to the register.
Last night our waiter kept disappearing, forgot a spoon and sugar for my tea and then disappeared, leaving me with no sugar and a fork to pull the teabag with, forgot the guacamole and then disappeared while my guacamole-less fajitas got cold, we had to track him down through the bartender to get the tab, and then he'd left off several items, and disappeared. We shrugged and paid it.
Perhaps the management is trying to save money by understaffing, and the waitpeople are washing dishes in the kitchen? No, several times last night we could see our waiter lounging on the other side of the bar, ignoring our frantic waves. Perhaps this is a passive resistance effort, giving customers free stuff, thus "sticking it to" management? Probably not, since free stuff reduces the tab, thus reducing the tip. (Unless they're not smart enough to figure that out.)
Is anyone else seeing this? Any explanation?