Shanae Callier, a recent graduate of UNCC, wants you to think of her as more then just a wing slinger. Callier has been a Hooters girl at the Uptown Charlotte location since August 2008. With goals of becoming a financial advisor for a major company in Charlotte, she starts small by advising customers on which wing sauces and appetizers to try. Spicy Garlic is what she recommends to all her customers because she says, "I can be a naughty girl, but I'm always nice to my customers." Armed with a note pad, sketchers, white knee-high scrunched socks, and those infamous orange shorts, Callier is ready to serve.
Creative Loafing: What brings people to Hooters — is it the wings or the girls?
Shanae Callier: The wings are good, but it's the girls. I've been working for Hooters for two years and not once has a customer said, "We just came for the wings." The girls here are personable, and we always have positive attitudes. Since Hooters is an image-based company, every girl has to take an image class before becoming an official Hooters girl. These classes teach us how to look "Hooterific." Before starting a shift, each Hooter girl is examined by a manager to make sure they have a perfect uniform, hair and makeup. The girls are definitely what the customers come to see. Beers and wings are cool, but who doesn't wanna see pretty girls?
What's the biggest misconception about Hooters girls?
That we're closer to strippers then actual waitresses. This is disheartening because the only thing that Hooters girls and strippers have in common are tips. Our founders' vision of Hooters was not a titty bar — even with the name Hooters, we are a family restaurant. We have a ton of people that bring their kids to Hooters, especially on Saturdays when kids eat free. When the kids come in, we provide them with crayons and balloons. We focus our attention not on the male customer, but on the female who may feel uncomfortable eating there with her significant other.
When you're not on the clock serving hot, wet and naked wings, what do you like to eat?
I love sushi. My favorite places to go are Pho Real in University or Room 112, which is actually very close to Hooters on West Trade Street. When it comes to my preference of rolls, I always order the shrimp tempura. As much as I love Hooters wings, I have to switch up what I eat, and sushi is a healthy choice.