Tips for great service, karma, and a quarter

A number of years ago my wife and I were in the very picturesque and quaint mountain town of Frisco, Colorado.  Nestled just off of I-70 in Summit County, Frisco offers access to scenic bike paths, Dillon Lake, beautiful hiking, and of course, world class skiing and snow boarding. It also boasts a number of specialty shops and eating establishments. Sandra and I had joined a number of classmates from my family practice residency for a much needed break at one of their local bed and breakfasts. 

After one of many almost perfect days, we chose to eat dinner at a local bar and grill.   It wasn’t particularly busy, so figured we would get right in.  Walking in, we immediately saw a couple of their wait staff sharing what sounded like a good laugh.  ‘Our kind of people’.  But then they just walked off.   A number of minutes later someone else on their team walked by, but again seemed to not really notice us.  Finally, on the third try, we flagged down the first person we saw, who seemed rather uninterested in a bunch of Kansans looking for a meal, but did sit us at a table.  Then she was off again, not taking care of other customers mind you, just gone.  I would guess it was close to 20 minutes before she emerged again, (and again we flagged her down) and we were able to get water and a menu.  Yep, you guessed it.  Another ridicuoulous wait but finally we were able to order.  The food actually came our rather quickly considering; except for the fact that much of the order was wrong. As our evening ended, she brought the check and walked away.  No smile; no ‘thank you for coming in’; nothing.  

I left her a quarter for a tip!  And this is where it got interesting.  She chases me down!  ‘You can’t do that!’  I couldn’t believe it.  She actually thought she deserved more than that!  I just smiled and said: ‘You’re right.  I’m not sure I got a quarters worth of service.’😲

We all know what it feels like to be served well and we all can recognize when that service is missing.  Serving, by its very nature, is unnatural for us humans.  Millions of years of evolution or thousands of years of human existence (depending on your position on such matters) make one thing clear; existence is survival of the fittest, look out for number one. Serving, on the other hand, is the giving of oneself to others, the placing of the needs of others about yourself. In other words, it takes a conscious effort to serve someone.

Which is what makes serving such a beautiful thing and so easy to recognize. Because while it isn’t natural, it carries a universal language, and that language is usually reciprocated with gratitude.  As such, serving is not necessarily altruistic. For some the gratitude in and of itself is why they serve, for others it may be a faith or karma issue, and for some it’s a means to improve their financial situation (be that a sales person, a waiter, a business, or a middle schooler taking out the trash). 

I am again impressed with how climbers tend to frequently be leaders in the area of serving. I see this manifested in so many ways:  the more experienced climber helping the noob (as opposed to thumbing their nose at them as so many other sports do); the teams of setters or developers finding ever new areas to explore; and the care and self-policing of care for our great outdoors.  Heck, I’ve even witnessed competitors helping other competitors with beta at the risk of their own standings!  

That is why, the first ’S’ in our B.L.I.S.S acrostic stands for Serve.  Because we know that you serve, and so, we want to serve.  In fact, there is nothing that brings us more delight than serving you.  

You have honored us with incredible respect by choosing to be a part of the Bliss Family. Serving you is what you deserve and it is our highest priority.  More than that, serving you is our privilege. 

That’s why we strive every day to make your experience at Bliss Bouldering and Climbing Complex the best part of your day.  And then maybe that karma thing will kick in and you will pay it forward and so will the next and the next and pretty soon, the world that we live in and that you also live in is just a nicer place to live (no other tip needed).

Serving and Following Your Bliss,


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