As an artist and struggling New York actor/writer I of course have waited on many a table. I've served the rich the poor, old and young, the fashionable, the plain, the kind and the evil. (There is far more evil eating out... just FYI) And it always made me wonder about strangers and their stories. In particular the stories behind the people who left me with a sense of sorrow. I've seen people stood up, celebrate the passings of loved ones from 9/11 and even a proposal gone awry. (Never ask for someone's hand in marriage with the ring on an Olive Garden breadstick!) Seeing people at their most vulnerable is definitely something you remember.Redditor u/nGear wanted to know about the times they felt a tug at the heart for a few customers by asking them to divulge.... Waiters, what's the saddest "I'm waiting for someone" you have experienced?
Shame on you young man....Embarrassed Hide GIF by florGiphy
I was a server for 5 years and the most heartbreaking experience I had was an older woman, probably in her 60's was waiting for her grandson to come meet her for lunch. When I greeted her at the table she was very excited as I assumed she didn't see him much.
As time went by no one showed up so she decided to order. Towards the end of her meal no had shown up so it being a slow shift, me and my gf (we worked together at the same restaurant which is where we met), decided to just talk with her for a little bit and give her some company. We both felt so sad for this sweet old lady but we could tell that simple act of kindness made her day. Shame on that grandson.
Happy Birthday Sir.
I was actually a hostess at the time and I was asked to take the table for a server. An old man came in asking for a table of 6 and he asked for 6 waters. I set up his table and I put his order in. He said it was his birthday. He was there for about an hour or 2 and nobody showed up. It was really sad. He ended up tipping me like $30 and he said "Sorry for the trouble." I still think about that guy. I hope he's doing okay. :(
You dodged a bullet....
Once at my shift I saw a really shy guy, you could see that he is on a budget, but omg, he was so trying so hard and looked so exited about upcoming date! He brought one rose, and asked what he can purchase on 10 euros to make this evening beautiful. My heart melted so much that I offered him for free two glasses of wine and a dessert (I was a manager).
We put on a table some candles, and so he was sitting there and with the big smile waiting for his date to come. But she never came. He waited like 2 hours, nervously checking on his phone. When he left, he gave this rose to me and thanked for kindness towards him. He was so broke. So was my heart about this situation. :(
After Goodbye....disney love GIFGiphy
Place I used to work at had a man come in every night for a week, wait for a few hours, order food and drinks, then leave with no one showing up.
Later learned he was just trying to cope with his wife's death, believing that she'd arrive to greet him at the restaurant were they had their first date.
Not the waitstaff, but the "Wait-er."
I had set an OKCupid date at this nice coffee shop in Brooklyn. I get there, and I know the barista from college. I'm the only person in the shop at the time, so we talk a little, awkwardly. Gradually other customers arrive, so she attends to them and I attend to my phone.
It gets to the point where my date is 20 minutes late and hasn't been responding to my messages asking about an ETA. I'm sweating. Profusely. I'm so embarrassed that I'm probably being stood up in front of someone who I had several classes with years prior and knows most of my friends. I feel so humiliated.
Then my date walks in.
Stands there for a moment.
AND WALKS RIGHT BACK OUT THE DOOR
Barista: "Was that her?"
Barista: "What an a-hole."
That comment made things slightly better.
An Extra Plate....
A six-year-old boy came every day with his older brother at lunchtime and for almost a month they ordered three plates of food and always left one. When I attended to them, the boy told his older brother to ask his mother for lunch because she was already arriving, but their mother never came.
The boy's older brother asked me to give the food to someone who needed it when they left and he told me that his mother had died and that he did not know how to explain to his little brother that his mother was not coming back, but that this cafeteria It was the last place where she had taken her little brother to eat and that is why the boy believed that she would return for the dinner.
4 in a row....
A woman came in 4 nights in a row just in case she got the day wrong. She'd sit at the bar wearing the same flowery dress every night and would hopefully look at the door every single time it opened. Left in tears the first two nights when we closed, the third and fourth nights she just stared vacantly at the door until we had to make sure she left.
I never saw her again, I don't think any other staff did either but we all felt really bad for her. She got a couple free drinks and apps, we didn't even care if it was a scam cause she seemed so broken about it.
Why so Public?bugs bunny cooking GIF by Looney TunesGiphy
Was working an evening shift and a relatively younger guy came in and waited for his date. She showed up and not even 10 minutes later he got up and left and she sat there crying.
Patrons that are there to breakup are also hard to witness.
No doggy bag?
Not a waiter, but was out with my girlfriend and we were seated next to a date.
Guy was clearly trying to engage with the girl, but the girl kept looking at her phone disinterested. Guy initiated all the conversations, only to be met with 1 word answers.
He ordered a lot of food (it's a dessert place, so a lot of small meals) and then the girl suddenly took her bag and left? He banged the table after about paying, and just left with the food untouched.
Everyone in the vicinity, including the waiters were visibly shocked. I felt so bad for the guy.
Stalled....Simon Pegg Wink GIF by Working TitleGiphy
Not a waiter, but this happened to me.
I went speed dating, turned up to the venue to find it very quiet. Barely anyone was there.
The event was on the second floor, so I got a pint for the time being and sat down and waited for people to turn up.
I tried to go up to the second floor only to find that it had been closed off. Noticing my confusion the bar man asked if I was there for speed dating, I said yes, he told me it was cancelled. I didn't get an email about this, nothing.
So I sat there, dressed up and alone. I finished my pint and went home.
Dropping $1500 for Nothing....
Ugh this one was tough; I worked at a pretty fancy steakhouse in town, and we had a private dining room that could set up to 32 at a single, long table. To book the room we charged a $1500 deposit, which we then used to cover part of the bill (it was a deposit, not a room charge). Anyways, this girl books it for 26 people, puts the deposit on her card. She shows up with her sister, and then after about 20 minutes, 2 of their 'friends' show up and sit at the opposite end of this giant table from the birthday girl and her sister.
Nobody else came. They waited an hour, the birthday girl was sobbing, the other two just awkwardly left. It was awful. I'm grateful to my manager, who in a moment of compassion refunded the whole deposit back onto the poor girls card. I felt terrible for her.
Just say NO.sad adventure time GIFGiphy
Got sat a "party of 15 to 20" for a woman's bridal shower.
Her mom decorated the table and chairs and the whole corner for the party, everyone in the restaurant could see there was going to be a party there on a busy Friday night. 4 people showed of the possible 20, that includes the future bride and mom. I didn't even care about the money I was missing out on (four tables of my section gone on a busy weekend shift) I just felt so bad for her.
Why Bother Lady?
Not a waiter, but worked at a coffee shop for several years and made friends with tons of regulars. One of the regulars, we'll call him J, was working on his PHD in Art History or something to that effect at the university near us. He came in one day, got his usual tea and asked if I could charge him for a latte, but make it later, no big deal.
I was bussing tables and asked who the latte was for and very excitedly expressed that he was meeting a lady and it was "kind of a date". He was an awkward kind of guy, but very interesting and incredibly friendly. One hour passes, no show, two, no show, finally three, he's looking despondent and starts collecting his things and leaves.
She showed up 20 minutes later asking about J. Apparently they got their times completely mixed up. He comes in the next day and I mention that she came in looking for him and he looked so excited. I found out a week or so later from him that she basically blew him off a second time. He was so crestfallen, it broke my heart.
Still With Me...
Ahhh, I haven't bartended in a million years, but the saddest one was a guy in his 30s. He had a 2 top, asked for a bottle of top shelf champagne, candles lit, all that. Told me they were celebrating. No one showed. Guy looked morose, but had an appetizer, poured a glass of champagne for the person who wasn't there, then asked for the bill.
I felt bad he obviously got stood up, so I brought him a desert in the house. He smiled, and told me it was his anniversary. My face must've showed my sadness for him, so he clarified- his wife died of cancer a few month ago. It may have been the saddest thing I've seen.
Not exactly a waiter, but I was working at a bar a few years back and there often was this girl (in her early twenties maybe) who sometimes used to meet her mother at the bar (maybe about every 2 or 3 months).
The thing is, more often than not the mother either came extremely late (1 or 2 hours at least) to didn't came at all. When she came, there often was a huge tension between the two. It was obvious that they had some unresolved issues.
Watching the girl wait for hours even if it was clear that the mother wouldn't come on that day always broke my heart. As a barkeeper and since she was a regular, I tried my best to engage a conversation with her to distract her a little, but there's only so much you can do.
Fun fact: Years after I stopped working at that bar, I met her at a random party and we had a great evening/night together. She told me that she 'broke up' with her mother tho.
So it's a No?Sorry Dog GIF by swerkGiphy
Guy was dressed really nice. Says his date should be there soon and goes ahead and is seated.
He orders a drink and 30 minutes pass by... then and hour, and another drink later. He started fidgeting with something and I noticed it was a ring. After an hour and a half he asked for his check and muttered something about "There goes two years wasted and down the drain." He tipped 2x his bill.
into crack town....
This gentleman in his mid forties came to my restaurant frequently and would not order his drink until "his wife got there." He would wait for a few minutes, then pull out a framed picture of a woman, set it on the table, and proceed to order his food and drink. He would talk to the framed picture and have dinner with "her" about once a week.
I noticed him doing this often and told my coworker I thought it was cute he was having dinner with his late wife and she replied,"Oh, no that's not his wife. He found that picture at good will and has been a relationship with it ever since. He told me that a long time ago." What did I expect from working right off the freeway in crack town. Very true story, no lie.
14 is an unlucky #...
We had a 21st birthday party booked for 20, the family showed up early with a few friends. They had a few drinks and let the staff know some of the party were running late. Half an hour in, when the late people were supposed to arrive, two friends left.
An hour went by and the birthday group ordered.
Got their starters, told the service staff some more people were coming. About two hours in the mother said just bring the mains out.
It was so sad, I felt so bad for them. Being stood up by fourteen people, and the two friend who did show up didn't even eat.
"Honey, it is going to be okay."
A few years ago, I took myself to a movie and dinner. It was the weekend before Valentine's day. At the time I had a warehouse gig and that day my step counter was at 7.9 km. Being exhausted, I just sort of plopped down. Ordered quietly, sipped a beer, and derped around on my phone.
I must have looked like I was on the verge of tears (in reality I'd been rear ended at a red light the week before and just hurt all over.) Server comped my cheesecake, smiled politely, and quietly remarked "Honey, it is going to be okay." Until that point I wasn't sad to be alone- but after that I was fighting tears all the way home.
She GoneAngel's GlowGiphy
I had a regular who would always come in with his wife. One day he sat in my section and I noticed his wife wasn't with him. I asked "where's your wife today" he replied "she's in heaven waiting for me". Immediately I died inside 😭😭😭😭🥺
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Friendship is not something that can be forced.
As with any kind of relationship, it all depends on compatibility and chemistry, and thus must happen organically.
On the flip side though, it can be pretty clear when people will not end up being your friends, owing to a fundamental difference in personality or beliefs.
Redditor Chola_Bhatora was curious to hear the type of people the Reddit community would never become chummy with, leading them to ask:
"What kind of person would you never be friends with?"
Basically, people who aren't nice
"People who don't apologize for their mistakes, blame others for their problems, and generally complain without doing anything about their situation."
"Oh, and generally a**holes."- NerdyDadGuy1981
"People who are overly rude and constantly laugh it off and call themselves 'a**holes' as if it is an uncontrollable character trait."- Business_Grand7665
Don't you twist my words around!
"People that distort what you said."- Mystery_Ireal housewives lies GIF by leeannelockenGiphy
Just take some responsibility!
"People who can never admit they're wrong about anything."
"No matter how blatantly wrong."- Rachfo44
Say it to my face!
"The kind that talks behind your back."- 0breanna0
Are you sure about that?
"Someone who thinks they already know everything."- Fragrant-Crow-4513know it all boomerang GIFGiphy
Then why aren't I laughing?
"Someone that puts you down in front of your other friends.. 'as a joke'."- motherfugher
How well do you actually know them?
"People who abuse your trust and honesty to manipulate you, especially when they disguise it so well."
"Had it one too many times, thankfully gets easier to spot but some people are freakishly good at it."- nothingjustk
Yeah, well mine's better!
"One uppers."- BasedChickenTendiekristen wiig television GIF by Saturday Night LiveGiphy
Someone needs a lesson in self respect...
"I'm a woman."
"Had a classmate strike a conversation with me for the first time."
"2 minutes in said she doesn't have female friends because all women are b*tches."
"Why are you talking to me then?"
"What do you think you are?"- Minimum_Greedy
As Jane Austen famously explored in Pride and Prejudice, first impressions can often be misleading.
But every now and then, they can give a crystal clear depiction of who someone really is.
Which could easily be someone you do not want to be friends with.
Age is just a number.
We all hope to stay sexy until the end.
And even when we don't feel sexy, maybe there will be people who still think we are.
Redditor Debonair-Redditor21wanted to hear about famous crushes that enter into the "Harold & Maude" territory. They asked:
"Who is the oldest celebrity that you still find attractive?"
All Hail Dame Helen Mirren. Is there anything else to say?
How Old?Viggo Mortensen Peace GIF by Golden GlobesGiphy
"Viggo Mortensen. Very handsome at 63."
"Damn, he is 63? Time flies."
"Elvira. Cassandra Peterson. Just turned 70 and still breaks out that amazing personality at every appearance."'
"Omg. I saw the BEST suggestion for a movie ever. Elvira & Dolly Parton playing their stage personas as estranged sisters who must team up to fight evil."
Fatalejane seymour call me kitty cat GIFGiphy
"Jane Seymour. 71 and still stunning."
"Live and Let Die. Incredible, and she'll always be in my mind as Elise McKenna, the woman so beautiful that Christopher Reeve's character went back to be with her in Somewhere in Time. I totally get the desire."
"Susanna Hoffs (63)."
"Plot twist: She sang 'Walk Like an Egyptian' because she's immortal and actually lived in Ancient Egypt."
"She was my first crush. As a child, I used to watch MTV for hours just for that moment when she cut her eyes in the 'Walk Like an Egyptian' video."
I am loving this list. I didn't think I would.
Maddymads mikkelsen hannibal GIFGiphy
"You mean my daddy issues? Damn I love that guy. Death Stranding really nailed how he can come through a medium without much hassle."
My Biological Clock
"Jesus, I was so confused watching the new Spider-Man movies with Marisa as Aunt May. Marisa Tomei is perpetually the hot 80s chick in my head, also Jennifer Connelly. I was watching Morbius and seeing Requiem for a Dream and Career Opportunities. I AM OLD, I GUESS."
"Christopher Plummer, right up until the day he died at 92."
"I first saw ‘The Sound of Music’ as a child, watched in many times, know if off by heart etc. I didn’t watch for many years."
"Then as an adult I wanted to introduce a friend’s kid to it, put it on, and spent the next couple of hours absolutely dumbstruck by how hot Christopher Plummer was. It had never struck me before that time but go**amn have I never forgotten. No wonder Maria chose the Captain, if I had to choose between him and God I know who my pick would be."
"Timothy Olyphant. Idk what it is about him. He's so funny, charming, and handsome that I don't care how much older than me he is."
"I do NOT get tired of watching him; he is so expressive. In Catch and Release there's a scene where he and Jennifer Garner are having a conversation that consists entirely of gestures and facial expressions. Hilarious!"
"He is amazing in Justified and Deadwood... hell, pretty much everything. I think I just found out I may have a man-crush on the dude lol."
YeohMichelle Yeoh No GIF by RegalGiphy
"Ugh she was a vision in Everything Everywhere All at Once. And if she doesn't win all the awards then there is something really wrong with the voting system."
"Oof that's kind of a hard one. Without looking up a bunch of older actors I think I'd have to go with Ken Watanabe. I think he's in his early 60s now and the last time I saw a recent pic of him he was still looking fine AF. And an honorable mention is Steve Carell... I don't know what it is but he keeps getting hotter with age. I was never attracted to him until he did that silver fox photo shoot with the paint brush 'n shi*t."
total class act...
"Stanley Tucci. As my mom says about handsome men, he just looks like he smells good."
"He visited our hotel a few weeks ago. As the Restaurant Manager I was specifically told that my team and I were not to treat him any different to other guests, which we don't."
"The guy was a total class act polite, courteous, and always keen for a chat. Never mentioned his movies, his career, but was there to enjoy time with his family, and they themselves were also a joy to be around. Can confirm he always had a slight aroma of warm cinnamon."
Well that is a long list of sexy. Cheers to growing sexy with age.
We all have our likes and dislikes when it comes to food.
While some people might not be able to stop eating certain foods, the very thought of that same food is enough to make others gag.
Then there are the foods which are universally considered to be delicious delicacies, the foods so revered that it is assumed that everyone must find them delicious.
Only, not everyone does.
Redditor jamboamericano was curious to hear which foods the Reddit community couldn't quite grasp the appeal of, leading them to ask:
"What a food in your opinion that quite simply sucks and you don’t understand the hype behind it?"
How do you make a bland food even more bland?
"As someone from the UK I don't get why so many people here love mushy peas."
"I find peas relatively tasteless and gross as they are, mushing them just makes the texture gross as well."- MHC1905
More healthy, less tasty...
"Zucchini pasta."-- dannyboyhou
Who knew fish eggs would be so popular?
"I feel like whoever buys that sh*t doesn't actually like it and uses it to flaunt their money."- WapplesAreDelishAudrey Tautou Food GIFGiphy
Hold the guac!
"The early 2010s was a difficult time for me."
'"I f*cking hate avocado."- drunky_crowette
No matter where it came from...
You mean it's supposed to burn my tongue?!?
"I don't get the appeal of chili that is made to be as hot and spicy as humanly possible, to the point that it hurts to eat it."
"'I make my chili with the five hottest peppers known to man and a dash of snake venom to kick it up a notch'."
"That, and tofu."- MiddleAgedGamer71Homer Simpson Eating GIFGiphy
Brand names can never beat homemade!
"Industrial ice cream."
"The taste is WAAAY worse than the handmade one."- pensodiforse
Disgusting AND dirty...
"My wife tried to convince me to like them by saying 'they taste like dirt!'"
"Needless to say, this was an ineffective approach."- Neilpuck
Just because it's healthy, doesn't mean it's good...
"I don’t care how it’s prepared, there’s just no point to it."- protogens
Butter makes everything taste better... or does it?
"I uh, I don't get it.'
"It always tastes a bit flavorless and just alright to me."
"Then I see people dip it in butter and yea thats fine and all and it tastes great, but then I get the feeling I'm just tasting the butter and what the f*ck is the point of this $30 dish exactly?"- Sonder332Food Porn Butter GIF by Food Network CanadaGiphy
Some might accuse those who dislike the above-mentioned foods of not having a distinguished palette.
But maybe their palette's are so distinguished, that they know when they're tasting a fraud?
Either way, to each their own.
Happiness is one of those abstract and amorphous things that nobody can quite pinpoint, but everyone knows when they feel it.
It can be triggered by lots of things - a great meal, an old friend, your favorite episode of your favorite show...
Happy looks different for us all, but maybe that's whyReddit user MyForever_NameNow asked:
"What’s the happiest you’ve ever felt?"
The same situation might make one person miserable while making another elated ... so let's see where Reddit finds their joy.
Time Travelingseason 2 GIFGiphy
"Once I was driving from Philly to Las Vegas. On one leg of the trip, I got a bit of a late start and I really wanted McDonalds breakfast (this was before they served it all day)."
"My clock said 10:22, and I was about 15 miles from the next exit, so I knew I would never make it. Then I crossed over a time zone and my clock changed."
"Not gonna lie, best story I've read in awhile. I'm now happy for you."
"It’s like the world willed you into having breakfast that morning , like the earth moved in order to give you what you needed … kind of epic"
A Poetic Mishap
"This might be weird but I keep thinking back to this and how I will never have this experience again: I was 13, nerdy, loved to draw, grew up rural. My Grandma lived close to a big city."
"Went to visit her in the Summer and then went to an Japanese culture fest in said city. I was overwhelmed by the experience. Bought two super sweet Neon Genisis Evangelion artbooks."
"When I went back to Grandma's place by train, I missed the stop and got off one stop later. It was quite late already, but a warm summer night. Next train back would come in 2hrs. These two hours, alone during a summer night with two artbooks at a tiny, rural train stop surrounded by trees and absolutely nobody else around were pure bliss. A weird feeling of peaceful, 'liminal' joy that I can't properly explain. Different happiness than love, etc."
"I haven't really told this story to many people because I know nobody would truly understand the feeling, and that would kinda ruin my memory."
"That’s dope. Sometimes we forget to just stop and really enjoy the moment"
Endless Young LoveHappy Season 5 GIF by This Is UsGiphy
"I remember being in 8th grade watching a movie at my girlfriends house and we were giggling and commentating on the movie the whole time and just remember thinking I would marry her someday."
"I’m now 29 and we still giggle and commentate on every movie just like we did when we were kids, but that “young love” feeling is a very happy feeling for the first time, I’m just so lucky to still have those feelings 15+ years later"
"Ok, but seriously, my spouse and I are also several years into our honeymoon and it's quite nice."
It Was A Good Day
"Trying to keep up with my dog and boyfriend as they ran along the beach chasing the dolphins that were in the water. I was laughing so hard I couldn’t breathe. It was a sunny March day so nobody up and down for miles, just us. The bright blue sky and glimmer coming off the ocean - the salty mist while the waves crashed and the cold ocean at our feet."
"God I haven’t ever felt so alive in my whole life. It was one of those moments where I wished I could have it burned into my memory. Like I could tuck it away and live in it forever."
"That was a good f*cking day."
"That’s so wholesome, it sounds like a scene right out of a movie"
"I feel happy reading this"
Mutual CrushesCrush Flirting GIFGiphy
"Me and my crush were hanging out one time, and all I could say was. “I like you… a lot.” And she just smiled and said “Me too.” Has to be the happiest day of my life so far."
"I live near a popular district in Kansas City and I once bumped into a young man who'd just professed his love for someone, and he was so overjoyed I couldn't help but ask him what had happened."
"It made me really happy to see how happy he was."
"Same thing happened to me, she told me she liked me and it took me about 3 minutes to fully process what she had said and how to respond. I ended up saying "same bro". Well we're together now but that was a pretty stupid response."
" 'So far' I like your attitude"
"5 years sober"
"Mad respect, I'm very proud of you internet stranger!"
"I'm right behind you with 4 years. Congrats Feels great to be me again"
That First Cry
"When my youngest was born, she really wanted out and my wife made it to the bathtub, and she came out with my help, she had the umbilical cord around her neck and I managed to get my finger under that and free her, that first cry made me so happy."
"She's eleven now and sitting on the couch right now eating chocolate and watching TV..."
"Kid's first cry was mine was well."
"Wow that's insane! Great job! When the umbilical cord wraps around the neck it's called a nucal. It can be pretty dangerous, especially in an emergency labor setting."
"I always thought I would never want to deliver a baby. And then we learned about emergency labor situations in the EMT course I took and I fell in love. Once again, great job! That must've been scary."
"I was taking a walk in December last year when everything around me in my personal life was hell. A feeling of calm washed over me, and I started to look at how beautiful the sky was. I was crystalline in that perfect moment, and cried a few happy tears."
"I realized that being "present" is the only way to truly live... The past and the future are illusions and robbers of life. Ever since then I am extremely committed to finding beauty in every day things. I frequently feel very happy now, because I never run out of things to marvel at."
"Dude I feel that. I lost my mom and several other family members in the last few years, went through a major breakup, had to move a bunch, plus all the COVID stress. I'm stressed a lot, mostly tired, but sometimes a moment washes over me and I'm just so grateful to be alive, looking at a sunset or a tree or the Christmas lights in my living room. Something about going through hell really makes you appreciate life."
"Grew up kind of poor, didn't go on my first vacation until I met the woman who'd become my wife. We went to Tennessee and got a cabin with a hot tub and some good muscadine wine."
"It was night time, gently thundering and raining, little bit of a mist coming in to the high rise porch we were on where the hot tub was, just relaxing, buzzing. To me it felt like the perfect setting, perfect feeling."
"Tied with that, she's the first person I saw the ocean with. Took over 6 hours to drive there, we unpacked, walked out to the ocean about knee deep, holding hands. The sound of the waves and the seagulls. The look of happiness on her face as she stared out."
Frogging Aroundhomer simpson frogs GIFGiphy
"My ex, who loves frogs to death, asked me to go frogging with her early unto our relationship, not to kill them, just to catch and identify them. Its one of my happiest memories and without a doubt the most attracted I've ever been to someone."
"Its actually when I started to realize how strong and how smart of a person she was which combined with everything else made be fall head over heels."
"Thats awesome man. I'd be happy to have had a unique experience like that too. No dinner and a movie, Frogging!"
Y'all ... that got unexpectedly emotional, didn't it?
Turns out that for most of us, the thing that makes us happiest is one another.
Humans are adorable sometimes.