Why don't waiters find it necessary to write down your order anymore? Is it some code among wait staff across the country that if you have to write it down, you're not a professional or you're not cool?
Well, if any waiters out there are reading (especially my waiter from Joe's American tonight) -- restaurant patrons are far more impressed when you get their order right and offer good service than when you take an order without writing anything down. I'd actually prefer that you wrote down that I want my dressing on the side -- or whatever other special requests I have -- because that will save me the trouble and embarrassment of having to send it back later. Please, there is nothing wrong with doing things the old fashioned way and writing it down.