The Brief Début of Tildy (Henry)

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The Brief Début of Tildy
Summary of a short story
Microsummary: In a popular early 1900s restaurant, a plain waitress experienced a brief moment of attention from a man, only to have her hopes dashed when he apologized, claiming he was drunk.

In the early 1900s, there was a popular restaurant called Bogle's Chop House and Family Restaurant, located on Eighth Avenue. The establishment was frequented by a diverse clientele, who enjoyed the hearty meals and the lively atmosphere. The restaurant was run by the cold and sordid Bogle, who took care of the cashier's desk, while two waitresses, Aileen and Tildy, attended to the customers.

Aileen was a beautiful and charming young woman, who effortlessly captured the attention and admiration of the male customers. She was skilled at witty banter and had a magnetic personality, which made her the center of attention at the restaurant. Tildy, on the other hand, was plain-looking and often went unnoticed. She was a hardworking and efficient waitress, but lacked the charm and charisma of her friend Aileen.

One day, a young man named Seeders, who worked at a laundry office, came into the restaurant after having a few drinks. Feeling emboldened by the alcohol, he impulsively put his arm around Tildy's waist and kissed her. This unexpected act of affection left Tildy feeling both shocked and elated, as she had never experienced such attention from a man before.

In the days that followed, Tildy began to embrace her newfound status as a desirable woman. She started dressing more stylishly, emulating Aileen's appearance, and enjoyed the increased attention from the male customers. However, her happiness was short-lived, as Seeders returned to the restaurant a few days later to apologize for his actions. He explained that he had been drunk and would never have behaved in such a manner if he had been sober.

Tildy was devastated by Seeders' apology, as it shattered her illusions of being a desirable and attractive woman. She realized that the kiss had not been a genuine expression of affection, but rather a drunken mistake. Heartbroken, she retreated behind a screen in the restaurant and sobbed, mourning the loss of her brief moment in the spotlight.

Despite her disappointment, Tildy found solace in the support of her friend Aileen, who comforted her and reassured her that Seeders was not worth her tears. Aileen's friendship and understanding helped Tildy come to terms with the situation, and the two women continued to work together at Bogle's, navigating the challenges and joys of their lives in the bustling restaurant.