The shopfront of Flamingo restaurant, Helensburgh.

Local man “too friendly to work at Flamingo”

Town centre

A trainee server has been let go by Flamingo after failing his probation for not being surly enough.

Charlie, who asked us not to publish his surname, was unable to secure a place in further education and said he’d “landed his dream job” at the takeaway. He told us he had excitedly started working on the quiet nights “to get a feel for things”, happily greeting customers with a smile. He hoped to ramp up to the hectic Friday or Saturday evening shifts at some point and was looking forward to the challenge.

“I’m a sociable guy, so I’d always get in some banter with the customers while they waited along the wall for their food.” Charlie lamented, “It never occurred to me that it wasn’t the done thing.”

Although none of the supervisors spoke with Charlie formally about his behaviour, he began to notice other junior members of staff trying to attract his attention whenever he was cheerfully making conversation.

“I can’t be certain but I’m sure the other lads were trying to warn me. It was like when someone’s been taken as a hostage in a movie and they attempt to discretely raise the alarm. I kept seeing them try to catch my eye, with an arched brow, but I didn’t realise I was doing anything wrong.”

Unfortunately, Charlie failed to take heed of the warnings and was told he hadn’t met the required standards to continue as a server at the restaurant.

The food cooler at Flamingo
The food cooler at Flamingo, where customers are supposed to train their eyes whilst waiting for an order.

One regular customer, who spoke to us on condition of anonymity, said that although he appreciated Charlie’s demeanour, it wasn’t a good fit for the takeaway. “Aye, he was a nice lad.” The customer told us, “But the excruciating tension in that place means you just want to get in, get your kebab and be on your way. I tend to just look at the pakora in the cooler rather than make eye contact with anyone. If looks could kill, the place would be a morgue.”

The customer added that he wished Charlie well for the future, as do all of us at the ‘Adviser.