Instead of leaving the waitress a tip, one patron who recently dined at a Zombie Burger in Iowa left a note on the tip line explaining the omission: “Tips are only for normal looking people.”
Taelor Beeck, the waitress in question, serves her Zombie Burger patrons while proudly sporting pink hair and a nose ring. But after she discovered the patron’s scribbled note to her on the bill worth $17.26 with the tip line was crossed out Tuesday evening, she said that she was left shocked and saddened.
“At first, I felt really upset, I felt attacked, I almost felt like I was back in middle school all over again, like being bullied. I felt like a burning anger inside of me,” Beeck told WHO-TV. “But I didn’t act on it because it’s not worth it when someone puts hate out there, you know to respond in a hateful way will do no good.”
Beeck related her economic concerns regarding her patron’s failure to tip her, as well, noting that just because the patron didn’t feel she looked “normal” didn’t give the patron a good reason to reject her service.
“I mean I can’t pay my bills if people don’t tip me,” Beeck told WHO. “That’s how I make a living.”
— PatinDet (@PatinDetroitMi) March 17, 2016
Many of Zombie Burger’s employees claimed that Beeck was one of the burger joint’s most popular waitresses, according to WHO. Orchestrate Hospitality, Zombie Burger’s parent company, announced that it is standing behind Beeck when it released a statement following the incident.
“We believe that zombie burger is a place that celebrates individuality. We stand by our staff,” the statement read. “We also believe that our customers enjoy zombie burger because it is a wonderfully unique place and that includes the team members. We are in 100% support of our staff. And we’re confident that our customers will be as well. She is an example of a great team member and we are standing by her.”
Beeck claims that she will continue to flaunt the style that she thinks best supports and complements her unique personality.
“It’s the way that I can express myself artistically and it’s really important for me that I’m allowed to do that, and it’s ok if people don’t understand it because it’s just who I am,” Beeck told WHO. “I would tell them to not judge someone based on what they look like. I mean, I may look like a weirdo but I’m actually a very nice, decent person.”
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