The other night I had a late table come in at five minutes til closing, and they had called in advance, so they KNEW that we closed at 11. Well, I had to take them -- they ate in a leisurely manner, ordered coffee and generally didn't make any effort to recognize the fact that they were the only thing keeping me from leaving!
Well, when I wrapped their pasta, he asked me if I could "have the kitchen put some extra sauce on it."
"Sure," I said. (Never mind the fact that the fucking kitchen guys are all in the back eating, since they've been done for a half hour!)
Anyway, I dumped the pasta into the little styro container, walked back into the walk-in where the mondo Bucket-O-Sauce is kept (we make our marinara from scratch and it is stored in those 5 gallon buckets). I reached in with my bare hand, and using it as a ladle, lovingly scooped out three handfuls of sauce onto the pasta, closed it up, washed my hand off, and presented it to him. Now, I was thinking of you the whole time! Admittedly, it's pretty innocent, since I didn't pee in it, or anything gross like that, but it was the best I could do and still sleep well that night.
—Monica, Atlanta, GA
Bartender's Prescription for Revenge
Last month I'm sitting at a local restaurant sharing service war-stories with the bartender. She and I go back a few years so she knew I wouldn't tell management when she told me her story. Apparently, four men who have been working at a local construction site had been coming in for a couple of weeks being general ass-holes. One guy in particular was being a grade-A prick to her. We'll just call him ass-hole #2,992,232 for anyone keeping records
Anyway, this asshole knew how annoying it was for bartenders to make frozen drinks, but loved to show his power by requesting them. To top it all off, he NEVER tipped.
This one evening, Asshole saw the bartender making some blended drink and asked her what it was she was making. She responded by calling the drink a "Pain in My Ass." This prick ORDERED ONE! Her revenge, however, ranks #1 in my book.
While the drink was blending, she poured double doses of prescription laxative into the blender, thereby rendering anything he had for lunch indigestible! The trick worked remarkably fast too. Within ten minutes, this guy was running to the bathroom looking like he just got a corn-cob shoved up his ass. And that wasn't the only time he had to make a visit either. As the guys were getting ready to cash out, she noticed that he was getting rather anxious again. Being the good bartender she is, her counting back the change slowed down to a crawl. While she was counting, she very casually told him, "Since you never leave me a tip, I decided to leave one for you. DON'T EVER FUCK WITH THE BARTENDER!
As she told me this story, I fell out of my seat laughing, giving her repeated high-fives for the duration of my visit.
—Steve, Maryville, MO
There are advantages to a small town. I live in Colorado in a town with only
three bars and work at a brew pub that closes earlier than the other bars.
One night I had these two inbreds asking for Bud Lights. (Remember, we are a brewpub, and we don't brew Bud.)
They stayed for a while, until all the stools were up and we were obviously very, very closed. I was polite and nice to them, but when they finally left after we started turning off lights, I was left with a nickel and a shiny dime as tip on roughly $30.
I was pissed, but no biggie; I checked out and went to one of the other bars, where all our servers are respected regulars. Upon entering, who do you think I see at the bar? The two cheap inbreds. SLAP! I throw down fifteen cents on the counter between them and say, "I think one of you dickheads left this on the table." The bartender (a man that I snowboard with twice a week) comes over and asks what I am doing. I tell him the story and order my drink. When he returns he removes the inbreds drinks and states simply, "You guys are done here." Sweet revenge. He goes on to tell me that he has called the last bar with the inbreds' descriptions, and well, he wishes them lots of luck. Small town justice, ya gotta love it.
Wanna talk about stealing? Oh God, the staff stole sooo much from this
place over the years, which they justified because of cheap, rude, and often
illegal treatment by asshole management. One waitress had not one but two
professional bar blenders at home. Ohhhh, those margaritas were
good. I would visit my co-workers in the summer and see some very familiar
one-pound portions of steak and lobster cooking nicely on their grills. In
the winter, employees would sled in their backyards on large kitchen
trays. The glassware, plates, silverware, and cloth napkins in their
cabinets were restaurant-quality, as were all of our friends' bar accoutrements
and supplies. Each of us had a 2-foot-long wooden pepper mill (but we knew
to only take them when they were new, as used ones were regularly set on the
filthy floor in the kitchen).
My friend Barb would lift a bottle or two of wine each night before she left. She wasn't even sly about it; in fact, she would yell across the bar to ask for my recommendation and then pop it into her backpack, totally out in the open. Sometimes her pack was so heavy she practically had to drag it. People brought in Tupperware and packed up soups and salads for their lunches the next day. Another waitress left every evening with a pocketful of jumbo chilled shrimp; the cook took raw steaks for his dog and salmon for his cats. As we cleaned up the bar each night, we filled our big 7-11 cups with premium liquor, getting a nice buzz so we could save money at the bars later. I'll save accounts of how staff skimmed money for another time.
How did we get away with all of this? Management was completely lazy
and seemed concerned only about which waitresses they could grope in the
One trick that always brought joy to the servers I worked with at a chain restaurant was to hide cooked or raw food, preferably fish, in places that we knew no one would ever clean (which, in a corporate environment, is practically anywhere besides large, major surfaces). The game was to see how long the food would stick around and how much it would stink before a manager noticed. A good spot was inside the bases of booths, since there were so many, and no one ever lifted up the seats to see what was in there. (We were supposed to roll fifty sets of silverware in napkins every night, but we would just use the same set and hide it again under a different booth seat, night after night, after showing it to management. No one ever caught on.) Some servers would do things such as dump milk behind counters that couldn't be moved out for cleaning. The place would really start to smell!
One of the managers decided we were putting too much cheese on the salads, so instead of putting the shredded cheese in an open container to be spooned out, he bought a can with only a few small holes in the lid. Of course it was impossible to get any cheese out of this. So every night as we were cleaning up, someone would quietly throw the cheese lid away. This manager was wiser than most and eventually knew to sift the garbage for the lid (and we had a LOT of garbage). Then we started hiding the lids around the restaurant or taking them home. The manager ran around screaming for the lids and threatening to fire anyone who touched them. It warmed out hearts, but our faces remained blank with ignorance.
In the fall, management decorated the place with stuffed scarecrows, hay, gourds, pumpkins, etc. At every opportunity, we would pose the scarecrow holding a longish gourd as his dick. It took a while for management to notice, but the customers certainly reacted. The gourds were taken away, so then we just put the scarecrow's hands down his pants. Eventually the scarecrows were removed.
For Halloween, we were supposed to dress up in costume. Have you ever tried to wait on customers at a huge, high volume, very messy, cramped restaurant while wearing a clown suit and floppy shoes or a witch hat and cape? Naturally no one wanted to dress up, since the guests ignored the costumes anyway. Someone hit on the idea of dressing as college students, so most servers came in wearing regular sweatshirts and sweatpants. Given that we usually wore formal server garb, the sweats look seemed very lazy and unprofessional, as we hoped it would. The next year, there was a costume rule: no sweatpants, so people wore t-shirts and jeans.
I worked at an ice cream house/restaurant that was owned by father and son Fundamentalist Christians. The father was Floyd, and the son was Lynn. They were very suspicious about theft and had cameras everywhere, even in the stock room. One evening my friend Ron was moving boxes in the far corner of the stock room, out of sight of the cameras, and happened upon a note tacked up by Floyd: "Thieves, I know who you are! You will be fired!"
Ron pulled out his pen and wrote "Blow me Floyd! Signed, Lynn" on the note.
This particular overpriced seafood chain where I worked was very focused on comment cards. However, whenever one of us received a bad one, we certainly took care of it before it reached management. If the patrons were dumb enough to leave it on the table, we immediately had fun reading the comments to each other in the back while correcting the grammar. Sometimes, a more sly patron would drop the card into the locked comment box, and then we would retrieve it with an inch or two of tape dangled into the box. And if the patron wrote his name and phone number on the card in hopes of getting free food for his whining, let's just say he was definitely contacted, hee hee.
There was also a comment line customers were supposed to call. We called the number frequently posing as customers and gave idiotic comments just shy of being totally ridiculous. The comments were transcribed onto a list for each individual store and were hung in the employee area, supposedly to humiliate us, but we would wager on who could get the most comments onto the list. We noticed that the comments about the managers' unprofessional behavior and slovenly dress would be mysteriously edited out.
Management would also post nasty complaint letters that had been written to the store. One of the waitresses was a college writing instructor, and she took a copy of one barely literate letter to use as a grammar exercise for her students!
You ever have those customers that just run your ass off and don't leave a tip? Of course you do.
I just loooove the ones that pay by credit card, leave blank both the tip and total lines on the slip, sign on the dotted lines, and leave both copies of the credit card receipt. Duh!! They have no proof whatsoever that they didn't give me that 50% tip. Thanks!
Brad, a very popular, expert bartender at the busiest seafood chain in town, recommends this handy revenge technique:
When he has a patron who is behaving badly or tipping poorly, or both, he waits until the offender orders another drink. Then he swishes the glass into the bar cleanser sink, leaving a light coating of the nasty soap-like chemical on the glass. In the case of beer, the chemical results in a nice foamy head and MAJOR bowel and stomach problems a few hours later. Rob claims he has actually seen patrons run to the restroom.
What really annoys me is when, on a busy shift, you find that the plate of cheesecake has a large growth of fungus on the surface as it has been left in the fridge a few days too many! So you go back to the table that ordered the cheesecake and with as much politeness as you can possibly muster, tell that table that you are really sorry that we have run out of cheesecake, but there is a variety of other desserts on the menu.
"WHAT!!! NO CHEESECAKE??? ARE YOU STUPID OR WHAT? WHAT KIND OF F****** RESTAURANT IS
THIS?!" etc. etc. For God's sake grow up; it's not the end of the world. But, you know what? The customer thinks that I
am a nice, friendly, apologetic waitress when I say, "Maybe we DO have some cheesecake
left—let me go check again." And yes, the customer
will get his cheesecake served with an extra dollop of cream which acts as a disguise for the holes made when scraping off the fungus!
—Natasha, London, U. K.
Here's a sordid tale of revenge. As a quasi-manager of three pizza restaurants, I was rotated wherever the service needed improvement, closed nightly, and all for the princely sum of $4.25 an hour. Well after a year-and-a-half of promises that I would get my own store (being only 19, I didn't realize how unlikely that was), I finally had it.
I began draining the keg at nights, making myself pizzas whenever I felt like it, feeding the homeless, etc. You get the picture. This of course was only after repeated pleas to the owner, who always said "Don't worry, you'll be next. You're my best worker! I want you to be a manager. Look how much you help me now. Blah Blah." This from a guy who refused to pay us overtime, by threatening us with firing or hour-cutting if we demanded it. Good thing he had a bunch of kids working for him, except for the management.
One night, the newest manager to be brought in from outside and placed in a position of authority above me made a nasty smart-ass comment that was the straw that broke the camel's back. I walked out and I took the three other best, most-experienced workers with me. The business closed within the week - all four stores in the metro area. The owner took what cash he could and fled the country, to this day I believe the corporate folks are still looking for him.
Thank goodness the people who "don't believe" in tipping are few and far between. If waiting tables was a minimum wage job without
tips, there would be no restaurants except for fast food places. Who would work so hard for the same amount they could get by sitting down at a
Hallmark store or something? When I waited tables, I'd sometimes enjoy getting customers who didn't tip, if I already knew who they were, so I
could have loads of fun making their service as slow as possible. That satisfaction was worth way more than what their measly tip would've been,
and I say that with the confidence of one who was a great server and knew it, both by verbal compliments and the amount of money I took home. I
didn't need to grovel for anyone, and that made it a blast to "get even" with the meanies.
This is one of my biggest pet peeves...women who piss on the toilet seat and don't wipe it up leaving the responsibility to the next person. I have walked around countless nights with some old lady's urine on my ass because I don't always have time to check the seat when I finally get the opportunity to run to the bathroom. I had the chance one time to grab a woman and point out her droplets and MAKE her clean up after herself! She was indignant and asked to speak with the manager. I told her I WAS the manager, doing the hourly bathroom check! She cleaned it up and I felt great afterwards, how sad.
Does anyone know of any studies done by sociologists or anthropologists into the behavior of American diners? What makes people (who are probably very nice, well-mannered citizens) behave like total boors once they have entered a restaurant? Do these same people hang around gas stations, lumberyards, auto parts stores, whatever, asking those employees personal questions i.e. "Are you married?", "Did you go to college?", "What is your other job?" What is my other job? How many jobs do you have, dumbass, and why can't this be my chosen career? Aaargh!!!
I found a new way to piss off jerks. If they order anything spicy, I stab the item with a straw and proceed to fill a nice pocket of Tabasco. Chomp into that!
There happened to be one very annoying customer that used to come in. Revenge was sweet when she ordered a dessert and one of the waitresses (who happened to just have had a baby) lobbed her left tit out and squirted her milk into the said dessert. The customer said, "Mmmm, that's the best dessert I've ever had!"
Adam , U.K.
Until recently I was involved in the catering game as a manager of an independent
restaurant in SE1. The waiters often got even with awful customers using the tricks you
mentioned, the scalding water in the finger bowl being the favored method.
However, as a decent manager, I helped the servers get even with poor tipping regulars by setting up the till so the the miscellaneous button added in an amount to the total on the bill but did not print on the customer's copy, so the only way they knew they were being overcharged was to add the bill up by hand. No one EVER checks computer generated bills.
While working at a pizza joint, one demanding a-hole customer got his pizza. He and his
fat wife ate half of it and then complained that it was under cooked. The manager rushed
out a fresh new pizza that was cooked a little more then the standard. They ate half of
that one and then complained that it was over cooked. The manager then again offered to
cook them another one, but he was getting mad. They said no thanks, we're leaving.
He apologized to these two a-holes and comped them the meal. On the way out they saw the "undercooked" and "overcooked" pizzas sitting on top of the oven. I couldn't believe it, they had the audacity to ask if they could have them, if we were just going to throw them away. The manager gave a stern "No" as he grabbed the pies and dumped them into the trash barrel in front of them.
I ran out the back door and met them in the parking lot with a shot gun. The rats assisted in removing all the evidence ("Oh my god, they killed Kenny" style).
—Brad, Kansas City
A Busboy's Revenge
Saturday nights at the first restaurant I ever worked at were busy. From four thirty on, it was a mad panicked stampede which usually wound up in frayed nerves, loose tongues, and hurt feelings. The only reason why I worked so hard for so little money ($2.01 p/h plus ten percent of the tips) was because it was 1980 and I was too young and dumb to know any better.
There was a hostess I'll call Laurie. She usually ran herd on us busboys calling us lazy, slow and stupid. Well, Laurie had a mouth in desperate need of braces and a screechy voice that needed to be lowered a couple of octaves. Her teeth would have made Bugs Bunny jealous. Those teeth also contributed to a lisp problem. Her S's and TH's sounded like F's and her R's sounded like W's. MY name is Russ. When ever she gave me orders, it went like this: "Wuff! Wuff! I need Boofs (Booths)!"
On this Saturday night, I was heading towards the dish room with a bustub overflowing with dishes. Laurie needed a table cleared. Seeing me rush past, she ran after me , yelling,"Wuff! Wuff! Wuff!" I spun around and shouted, "SIT GIRL SIT!"
Everyone in the dining room--customers included--burst out laughing. After the rush was over, the manager tried to write me up but couldn't. She kept cracking up as well.
Laurie was as nice as could be after that.
Ok, I'm a recovering waiter/bartender who is now stuck in a corporate desk job. Sometimes I actually long for the "life" again. Great to have a wad of cash in my pocket on a Friday night. Anyhoo, I was working in a hotel as a banquet waiter in college and the function of the day was your basic pre-all day meeting breakfast buffet. As many of you know, buffets keep us busy with ENDLESS dirty plates that pile up like crazy. In addition, we had to pour coffee b/c it was not on the buffet line. So, there were two of us handling about 50 (!) people.
Towards the end I was cleaning up the last of the plates from a table of lingerers. One
of the other patrons at the table offered to help me out by getting the coffee for his
friend at the table. "No," he said, "Let the poor white trash kid get it
for me." Everyone in the room froze (except me). I gave him a questioning look like I
didn't hear him. He snapped his fingers at me and said, "C'mere boy!" I started
towards him with four full pitchers of ice water. I "stumbled" on my way
there and wound up giving him and his nice wool suit a TORRENT to ice cold water.
My co-waiter had to dash out of the room before he laughed himself into a hernia. I apologized profusely and tried to clean him off with a napkin. He looked at me to see if I was yanking his chain and did it on purpose but I kept my demeanor and he bought it. He bitched and moaned all the way to his room. I walked into the kitchen to a roar of laughter and copious cheers and applause.
Amy and I were finishing up our last few tables one evening. A customer of mine complained that her hamburger was overcooked, and it was indeed. I had another one made for her, but by that time it was late, and she just wanted it boxed up so she could take it home. Whoopsie though, she left it on the table.
Amy and I contemplated the intact burger and figured it must be good for something. We glanced around the room. This place had a cheesy nautical decor, with stuff all over the walls and ceilings. In the middle of the main dining room was a large pole, made to be part of a fake inside porch thing. Amy, struck by a sudden idea, stood on a table and placed the burger on top of the pole, about ten feet up in the air. It was fully visible in the dining room, but we gauged that no one would notice it because of all the junky decorations.
No one did--for an entire month. Too bad it wasn't hot and humid summer. We monitored the beloved burger every shift, and every sighting of it gave us joy. I began to notice a sour smell each time I passed it, and couldn't tell if it was my imagination or not. The burger finally came down when our blowhard of a manager was seated at a guest's table schmoozing and the guest happened to notice it. The manager made another server bring it down, and the report was that it was ..."very hard."
—The Wild Turkey
Here's an evil fantasy I have never actually indulged in; perhaps others can take inspiration.
I work in a large, corporate chain, and we have these comment cards on the tables that practically beg the customers to write something bad. I imagine the last question on the comment card to be, "Come on now, isn't there anything else that you can POSSIBLY think of that was even the SLIGHTEST bit to your dissatisfaction so that you may get something FREE????"
Someday, I want to take one of these cards where the customer has really ragged some poor server but had the brazenness to add his own name, address, and phone number to the completed comment card. I plan to call him and speak in the sweetest most bubbly voice and say I am calling from the Customer Service Dept in the home headquarters. I would start out telling him that we received his comment card and wanted to discuss his problem with him.
I'd say a few more typical, corporate, people-pleasing types of things and allow him do some more complaining, but then I would start to get a little cocky with him: "Sir, maybe you don't realize the difficult job our servers have to do."
I would let him go on, but I would slowly become more severe: "You know, maybe if you would take common decency into consideration when visiting one of our restaurants, you'd have a better experience."
"Many people think they can demand anything they want and are often hoping to get something for free. Maybe such a rude FUCK such as YOURSELF will even get his food SPIT in if you ever show your face again in our restaurant. Why don't you get a FUCKING LIFE and concern yourself with THAT; you probably have a TINY DICK, YOU MOTHERFUCKING BASTARD!!!!"
Have a nice day. Click.
—Joy P., Virginia
After a long 8 hour Sunday shift, a known arsehole came into the pub and asked for a
well done rump steak. Not only did he want it burned to boot leather, he wanted it
I conveyed his order to the chef, who went completely ape-shit, and who started to tenderize the steak. Amid much cursing and complaining, the pub Dalmatian came to the rear door of the kitchen. Both myself and the chef had the same idea.
"If he wants his fucking steak tenderized, he can have it," the chef cried and gave the steak to the dog, who thought it was his birthday.
After 10 minutes of coaxing the dog to give up the steak, he proceeded to burn it to a crisp. Not only did the nob of a customer eat the whole steak, he proclaimed it was the best steak he had ever had and left a hefty tip!
The moral: Don't fuck with the chef!!!
Is Big Daddy Home?
I know this is horrible, but I'm glad to tell it. Once I waited on a business woman type who was with her young daughter. All went well with this table, and I even fussed over the kid. But then, when the woman signed the charge slip (actually I noticed that it was her husband's charge card, but I was nice enough to let this slide) at the end, not only did she not leave ANY tip, but she also stole my new pen. Well, it is a big mistake to do something this foolish and leave one's name behind.
I looked up her husband's name in the phone book and made it a point to call every now and then (from a non-traceable number or a pay phone) and in a nervous-sounding or giggly voice, ask for the husband when the woman answered. When she would angrily ask who it was, I would just hang up. I hope I didn't break up their marriage, but hey, I was pissed.
Not so very long ago, I worked in Chili's Grill & Bar in Cambridge, England, and
on one incredibly busy Saturday night, I got this table of five Cambridge University
geeks. They had obviously never been to the store and, like many people, got the wrong
impression from the name of the restaurant.
"What do you mean you don't do anything REALLY spicy?" he shouted at me in front of all the other guests. "You're called Chili's for God's sake and you haven't got one bloody HOT meal on the menu!" I politely reminded him that food servers do not generally get the opportunity to design menus for large multi-national chain restaurants, but this guy would NOT let up. He had been waiting 1 1/2 hours for his table, and he wanted something HOT.
He eventually ordered fajitas. When I rang them through, I hit the "see server" button for the kitchen. I told the cook I wanted them made HOT. "How hot?" he asks. "Let me do it" I replied. Making sure the managers were safely tucked into the office, I went onto the broiler, put down the skillet, tossed in some onions and bell peppers, and then poured a WHOLE BOTTLE of TABASCO SAUCE into this asshole's fajitas.
Let's just say that I've never seen someone go SO red SO quickly. I thought the asshole was going to die, and I'm sure he did, too. Before he left, I apologized once again for not having anything particularly HOT on our menu. He looked at me like he thought I was going to stab him and left sharpish with his idiot friends. Aaah... revenge. Love it!
—Steve, Cambridge, England
I have worked at a restaurant where the owner was such an asshole, I know a group
servers who took the sliced strawberries about to be served to him and hawked lugees (lungcookies, snot, whatever you want to call
it) onto the strawberries, mixed it up, and served it to him. The moral of this story?
Watch how you treat your staff, owners and managers, especially if you expect them to wait
on you hand and foot for no tip!
Miriam worked in a small chain diner. She hated her job. This particular night, all was going wrong, and the place was packed. Several servers had called off, and the ones who were there were totally slammed, covering many more tables than their usual eight. The dishwashers couldn't keep up with the pace, and the waitresses had to wash glasses and plates themselves, by hand, if they wanted to serve the food to their guests. Miriam had to use a soup cup to serve her patron's rice pudding instead of the usual fancy glass dish.
She explained that she was sorry but that there was she was unable to serve the pudding in the usual dish. The patron snapped indignantly, "Well, I don't LIKE IT THAT WAY!!!"
Miriam snatched back the pudding, and, right before the astonished customer, hurled the dish at the wall, where it smashed dramatically and loudly. Miriam calmly asked, "Well, how do you like it NOW?" Then Miriam quickly gathered her things and left that diner forever.
—Steve K., Alburtis, PA
Brent was one of the best servers I have ever seen in my life. Not only was he superior in energy, efficiency, and pleasing his guests, but he was regularly wooed by area restaurateurs who wanted him to work in their own establishments. He had a rare quality of not only being an excellent worker but also being well-loved by the staff--he was neither a tattle-tale nor a kiss-up.
Brent was patiently waiting on some trailer trash when the father asked if there was any fresh haddock that night. Brent replied that we were unfortunately out of it. The customer bellowed, "I don't know if you speak English, but I said I wanted FRESH HADDOCK!!! THE LAST TWO TIMES I WAS HERE THIS FUCKING PLACE WAS OUT OF HADDOCK!!! WHAT IS YOUR FUCKING PROBLEM???" For effect, he shoved back his chair and flailed his arms. All the other guests in the room stopped and stared at Brent, who was left humiliated and speechless. Brent went directly to the manager and asked to be placed on another table. The unsympathetic manager forced him to either continue waiting on the bastard or be fired. Brent fumed quietly and began doing all that was necessary for the troublesome table. His blue eyes flashed angrily until he went back into the dining room, where he again assumed his professional demeanor.
When Brent saw the table's food coming up in the window, he felt he had to have his pound of flesh. He grabbed the baked potato from the plate that would go to the shouting loser and took it into the employee closet. The manager stood nearby, oblivious; no one would EVER suspect Brent of what he was about to do. Brent worked up a killer hocker and spit it, with precision, into the sliced open potato. He brought the potato back to the kitchen and placed it on the plate, lovingly dabbing butter and sour cream on it and completely camouflaging the spittle.
I watched Brent take the food to the table, and then he and I huddled in the corner of the dining room, in hysterics, as the man tore into his dinner. Brent stopped by the table to check on the taste of the food, and the jerk proclaimed it delicious. More sniggering in the corner was enjoyed. At the end of the meal, the man apologized for yelling at Brent, who graciously accepted the apology.
TOO LATE, DUDE!!! Lesson: Never, EVER, fuck with the person who handles your food, no matter how professional that person may seem!!!
—Lynette in Long Island, NY
When the waitress told me, the chef, that a particularly obnoxious customer "didn't want any bloody sauce" over his burger, I immediately obliged by licking the offending item clean. Revenge wasn't necessarily sweet; it called for more blue cheese.
I once worked a large national chain restaurant. As you can imagine, we had a senior citizen discount. It always seemed that when I sat some old bastards, they wanted the booth that was not yet bussed and wiped. My answer was to give them the booth but to first wipe the seats and make sure to leave a nice layer of water or sanitizer on the booth vinyl. The polyester-panted women always hopped up quickly mumbling about being wet. Maybe next time they'll think twice about asking for a dirty booth.
—Andy, Austin, TX
Take it Outside
I was fired from a family restaurant where the servers act goofy and wear suspenders with lots of buttons (you know where) for chasing guests who didn't tip me out of the restaurant. The story goes like this: Four young teenage girls, told me they were going to a concert and were in a hurry, I rushed their 3 meal order (1 girl was sharing) and got them out of there in good time. We validated parking at the garage next door at this particular store so when I cleared the table and saw there was no tip - and the cash left was $2.00 short - I rushed to the garage and waited by the gate. I approached the 2 girls in the first car (they had 2 cars, and I gave them 2 parking validations - a $4.00 value right there) and informed them that the money left on the table was $2.00 short, at which point the girl handed me a five dollar bill, so now I am outside the car making change for them. "Was everything ok?" I asked, "Yeah", said stupid bitch #1, "Did I get you in and out in time?" I asked nicely "Yeah" replied stupid bitch #2. "Well then WHY THE HELL DIDN'T YOU TIP ME YOU STUPID LITTLE BITCH??" I screamed, obviously losing control.
I went on and on to make my case of how I had to claim 13% of my sales (Yes, its true, at this particular restaurant we had a little visit from the IRS who had worked up a formula whereby we had to claim a minimum of 13%) and how when a person eats in a restaurant they are expected to tip, etc. etc. Well one of these little freaks had her dad call and talk to my manager and when I came to work for my next shift, goofy outfit and all, I was fired. I was devastated but found a better job the same week and did learn a very important lesson. I'm calmer these days, and no longer waiting tables. But it sure did feel good to just lose my shit and scare those girls! Talk about a waitress from hell!
Saturday night. I'm slammed with 9 tables, 7 inside and 2 on the patio. This one table has an American woman and a European man that speaks no English. The woman was snotty right from the start. She began to run my ass all over the place. She deliberately waited until I brought her drink before she ordered the man's. This run around lasted a good 1/2 hour right in the beginning of her meal. Gimme, gimme, gimme...she just wouldn't let up. Finally, she asks for the check. She pays by credit card and leaves me $3 on a $70 check. I am really steamed. I gave her good service in spite of my being slammed and her incredible demands. She sees someone on the patio she knows and takes boyfriend in tow and vacates the table, leaving the biggest wad of keys I've ever seen. I grab up the keys. About an hour later, the manager asks me if I've seen her keys. Told him no, I didn't clear the table and I've not seen any keys. I have this really innocent look on my face. The customer is standing behind him visibly distressed. She was babbling about her car, house, office keys and she had no way home. Her entire life was on that key ring.
1:30am. Back at my apartment. I fix up a killer martini. I stare at the keys for awhile wondering what to do with them. My apartment is on the 10th floor. The sound of those keys sliding down the garbage chute was music to my ears. Later, I find out the lady came by the restaurant 4 days in a row looking for those keys. Too bad I can't tell her this story.
A waitress, very cute, (and very fit) was serving a table of 4 men, one of whom was a real dick. He kept calling her "babe" and making off-color remarks when she was at the table. About halfway through the meal, she walked by the table, and the guy reached out and goosed her (what class).
She screamed, and spun around, then HIT this son of a bitch SO goddamn hard, he wound up on the floor with the table on top him, screaming he was going to sue (for what? He assaulted her, keep in mind...). The manager came over, and with the help of a relatively LARGE server, who also was a good friend of the waitress, physically dragged the guy through the dining room, and THREW him out into the parking lot.
Apologies were made to the rest of his party—surprisingly, they stayed for the rest of their quickly replaced meal—and the bill was comped. And this was only the second day I was in the business. What an impression!
It was a busy Friday night at, we'll call it the "Crack House", and I was hosting. I seated a party of five, (husband, wife, and three screaming kids) next to an empty table. Our busser went over to clean the table, all the while making the usual noises...plates and glasses clanking together...nothing out of the ordinary. However, between fighting with her kids, this lady had the nerve to turn around and tell the busser that he needed to be quiet because she shouldn't have to listen to him making all that noise. Yea, whatever...bitch. Then she looks at me, because she realized I'd heard everything, and I just glared back at her...confirming her assumption. I wanted to tell her that if she didn't like it, there's the door, or if she could do better, here's a bus tub! Then she felt the need to send me dirty looks for the remainder of her dining experience. By this time, this lady had complained to her server, the manager, and anyone else she could find...and the busser hadn't even said a word to her. I was pissed off by now, so I brought the busser back into the ice room with me, told the server that I'd double the lady's tip and add five bucks if she'd let me do this. She didn't have a problem with it at all. I took the busser's used rag, got the lady's Coke refill, and rung it into her glass. I removed any incriminating floaters, and set it on the tray. She never found out, and stiffed the server on account of their many disruptions.
Coffee House Memories
Many years ago (in 1972 I'm afraid) as an art student I went to a coffeehouse in Cambridge, Massachusetts that will go nameless, but anyone who has any familiarity with the folk scene of that era will recognize instantly, and asked the owner's wife if there were any waitressing jobs open. She divined my working class origins and told me, "We don't take people like you. We only take people from places that Radcliff and Mount Holyoke. Places that that."
Her "...people like you," bored laser-like into my brain and I can still see her look of contempt as she delivered it.
Two years ago I got a flyer from the coffeehouse saying that they were contemplating bankruptcy and that the owner was suffering from cancer and, because they were an historic part of the folk revival, they asked for donations.
I wrote to her to remind her that of our earlier encounter and to say that if "people like me" weren't good enough to waitress there, our money clearly isn't good enough for them either.
This was make all the more amusing because I had gone on to get a degree from Harvard and was working on my masters there.
—Sincerely, People Like Me.
While putting myself through college, I decided to wait tables in a truck stop. Laugh all you like about truck stop waitresses, because I sure was. I figured my good fortune in having all my own teeth and being under the age of forty, not to mention the fact that I knew blue eye shadow had been retired, would pay off in tips. I was right, however I still ran into amazing assholes on a daily basis. One I fondly remember was a female trucker who had that annoying habit of refusing to take her nose out of her menu when ordering, thereby forcing one to strain to hear her order. One afternoon I was suffering from a bad head cold, and was having trouble hearing. Combined with her mumbling into her menu, I was unable to hear her and kindly asked if she could repeat her order, as I was having a rough go hearing. For the first time ever, she looked directly at me. Her voice dripping with uncalled for sarcasm, she loudly repeated her order as if I was retarded instead of ill, spelling out her entire order. Pissed, but dealing, I was cool until she finished with "Oh and I need a grapefruit juice.
Did you HEAR ME? g-r-a-p-e-f-r-u-i-t j-u-i-c-e. Can you HANDLE that *sweety* or should I w-r-i-t-e it
down for you."
Seething, I turned in her order and went to fetch her damn juice. Pausing before re-entering the dining area, I proceeded to take a huge swig of the vile stuff, swish it about in my mouth, and drool it back into her drink. She was a hostile bitch for the remainder of her stay, but I felt much more relaxed knowing I would soon know if what I had was contagious. >=)
She returned on her back trip, sick as a dog from an evil head cold. Hmm, wonder where she picked it up from...
Lone Star New Year
Where was I near the stroke of midnight, New year's Eve, 1997?
Same as last year; lugging bottles of cheap champagne to tables full of drunk cowboy lawyers and their cackling wives. It was a prix fixe dinner complete with streamers, hats and balloons strewn all over the floor. Ours was supposed to be a swanky restaurant, but decorum is not something highly valued among this crowd of Texan ranch owners. Those stout bellied blowhards loved to tie one on and take out their contempt for the less fortunate on us. The more we rushed and smiled, the more brutal they were. "Where the hell is that goddamn Champagne!!" bellowed a graying tycoon, sweating from the alcohol of many glasses of bad chardonnay. He had taken off his Stetson hat and seemed not to care about the pressed in ring it had left in his hair. He charged up to me as though he planned to rip my head from my body.
"Young Lady, do you realize it is five minutes to midnight? You gonna get all of us poured some bubbly by then, or do I need to get yer goddamn manager in here to help you?"
"No sir, I've got it covered,"
I growled between gritted teeth. Everyone in the small private room was either standing in clumps or perched, as with most of the wives, with their Channel clad asses right on the table, laughing, sloshing, spilling ashes, piling plates on the windowsills. My busboy and I began frantically to serve the Veuve Cliquot, dodging stumblers and other busboys and servers assisting in clearing the table. It seemed hopeless; once I thought everyone had a glassful, a shout would come from here or there: "Hey honey, I'm out over here!" and I would have to scramble to refill. The time was closing in. There was no way to keep up with them so Carlos and I, exhausted, just hung back for the moment. Miraculously, one of them noticed the time and shouted to the group, "Hey, hey y'all, it's time! It's time!!" They scrambled for their streamers. "Five...Four...Three...Two...One..."
And in this millisecond, as the partiers reared back to toss out their paper streamers, my eyes hit the huge candles placed along the middle of the table. I started up to intervene but it was too late. "...HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!" The streamers were released into air, floating gracefully, crisscrossing, right into the flames. In no time the entire table was ablaze with bright streams of fire. Finding this hysterical, the crowd of wealthy ranchers began to extinguish the fire with spews of shaken beer and champagne. The table was soon covered with ashy, smoking pools of Coors Light. I gave up. This was total chaos. I left the room completely exhausted and disgusted.
When I returned, my friend the Drunk Hathead was spitting at our manager. Something about "lousiest service he'd ever had" and "I thought this establishment had a good reputation". As it turns out, the man was trying to get out of the $270.00 gratuity. The manager was losing the battle, from what I could see, and as I could take no more of it, I stomped back to the table to begin cleaning up. As I began wiping off the stinking remnants of the fire drill, I noticed the man's Stetson sitting on a chair upside down, looking very much to me like a perfect receptacle for my wrath. I discreetly made an inspired concoction of beer, white zinfandel, cig butts and leftover rib eye fat in a wine glass, and deposited all into the hat. I hardly keep Carlos from busting a gut, but assured him we must be very cool.
The man barked at the manager for half an hour at least, and all but the man and his wife had retired to the cigar room. Hanging out seemed too suspicious, so I finally had to leave the scene. It was only with the later report from Carlos, who kept an eye on the scene, that I learned what happened. When the man tried to put on the hat, my cocktail splattered all down his suit, sending his wife into riotous laughter. Apparently he was so pissed at her for laughing he never thought to put two and two together. And as if the gods had seen fit, the man had not only agreed to pay half the gratuity, but was so shitfaced that he added another tip on the tip line in addition, totaling the $270 we were supposed to get in the first place.
—Taj J., Austin, TX
Several years ago, I worked in a gourmet restaurant in a Las Vegas casino. As some as you may know, there is a famous magic act performed around town by a couple of freaks of nature. Let's call them Ziegfield & Joy. Well, these two guys were true #1 A-Holes. And we had to make them their food every day. Their butler would call in the order around 3 pm, and the food had to be made, put on a silver platter (yes it had to be silver!), and room service would come pick up the food. These guys would order stupid things like Ossobuco a half hour before they wanted it. (Ossobuco takes 12 hours to cook.)
One day we were getting slammed, and those guys kept demanding potatoes every half hour; we would send the food up, only to have more immediately demanded. I lost it, grabbed the cooked potatoes, went into the walk-in, pulled down my pants, and rubbed my testicles all over them. Then I put the potatoes on their silver platter, garnished it, and gave the tray to the room service waiter.
I am not proud of what I did and would never do a thing like that again, even if pushed worse. But, somehow I felt those guys had already had that flavor in their mouths before...
A couple of years later, I was talking to a friend of mine, told him this story, and he told me a VERY similar story about another famous person. (His famous song is "Brown Eyed Girl"; let's call him Ban Gorrison.)
So, it does not matter how famous you are or how much money you have.
If you're an asshole, your food will get f**ked with.
It Gets the Red Out
My best friend is also a fellow bartender. We had a man who would come in and hit on anything with legs. Thought he was quite the stud muffin. After about a month of his rude behavior and his bitching that we just couldn't wait on him fast enough. (And he never ever tipped) We decided that we had had enough. So we constantly made sure his drinks were full and we used a whole bottle of Visine in his drinks that night. Laughing hysterically over his rushing to the bathroom constantly. After about 3 nights of this he made a comment that every time he drank there that he got the shits. Imagine that!!! Eventually he stopped coming in!
Our Italian, corporate restaurant, who could give a rat's ass (literally) about the well being or welfare of we pee-ons (everyone but management), was holding a contest..."win a trip to Italy." The customers would fill out an entry form at the front by the host stand and leave the cards in a big box, accessible to all, especially employees!!!! So, having been dating a host at the time, I had him grab 25 or so of the cards and a bunch of us servers called these random people on the cards from pay phones and told them that they had won the contest and to come in for a FREE lobster dinner, open bar, bring a guest to the restaurant on a particularly busy Saturday night at 7pm!! And if there was a wait at the door, to march on up and ask for the (asshole) general manager to take you to your seat in the back....of course no such seat would be prepared for them, but the GM at the time, deserved a little chaos to say the least! So, what happens? HEAVEN! People were ecstatic on the phone, excited they would be presented with their winning plane ticket to Italy in the form of a LOBSTER DINNER! (we didn't even serve lobster!) and even more so, was seeing these people show up on a sat night looking for their winning!!!! The GM was a mess and the cops even had to come to break up the madness! Needless to say, the company gave away many a gift certificates and canceled the contest! A small price to pay for the unjust treatment we all received working there! No one ever knew WHO was behind the scheme, and I would like to keep it that way!!!
—Tortured Terminal Server, but rest at night with the memory of this sweet revenge!!!
Fun at the Olive Garden
How about this! These two rude African-American women came in to the Olive Garden around 8:00 pm. last week. They had a party of twenty people (mostly annoying children). When the hostess told them it would be a 30-minute wait, they flipped. They called the hostess a bitch and everything. Then they wanted to see a manager. They told the manager that the hostess called them bitches and that they were discriminated against because they were black (cough-cough bullshit). The manager offered them free appetizers and drinks like an asshole. These people actually ordered $80 worth of drinks and appetizers. Would you actually stay there knowing what the servers were going to do to your food? I couldn't help myself. Let's just say that my cough became more productive that night, teehee!
Kitty, Long Island, New York
Just Hanging Out
I have recently left the business of waiting tables after doing it for over ten years. Needless to say I have experienced and heard many incredible tales. But the reason I am writing today is to provide my poor fellow waiters with a way to alleviate the negative customer vibe. And I swear it works. Hang it out behind your apron. That's right, have your dick sticking out your fly, flying free, behind your apron. There is no better feeling in the world than to strut through an expensive restaurant with Mr. Mushroom doing the slinky dance behind your flimsy apron while the customers stuff their faces. No matter how volatile the situation, having it out will make it better. If some bitch doesn't like the food just think hey you haven't minded my cock in your face all night. If some pompous asshole has a complaint, talk into the pink microphone douche bag. THIS REALLY WORKS. A word of caution. Be careful of the young college age bus girls that like to run around and untie aprons behind your back, you could end up fired or even arrested. Also, keep your hang out habits to yourself or someone will definitely bust you for loitering. Triple knot your apron and be careful about boners.
Mitch, Punta Gorda, Fl
I notice a lot of representation for children and cheap bastards on this board, but I don't see a lot of the class of customer that combines both of these less than admirable groups...
Young high school kids.
Now, as a young waiter and later bartender, I found these to be the worst, especially the bigger groups with both little girls and little boys....The boys seem to like to play, "Who can be the most rude to the college-age male server and impress the chicks" game with each other. Of course, I generally took great pleasure in simply carding these young bastards....I never, ever served underage, because, let's face it, young kids can barely afford beer, let alone a tip. But I digress.
At a chain that will remain nameless (Brinker International's On the Border Cafe) I was working the floor one night when a crowd of young punks and their little hoochies strolled in and sat down at my 8-top. I chipped them, grabbed the drinks, etc etc etc. Returned to take the order, and the boys decided it would be funny to order in a Jerky Boys voice, complete with "got that sizzle chest? and "You got it tough guy!". How very creative. The girls ate this up.
My best friend there, another young guy with a horrifying temper, told me we should just go out and beat them to death, as they had done the same thing to them the week before and then stiffed him on top of it. I counseled patience.
I'm a nice guy. My family ran restaurants, so I know my way around. I waited tables for years, and always believed that messing with someone's food was one of the biggest scumbag things a human being could do. But when I went back out there and the girls started ordering dessert, made "just so", and asked me "if I thought I could handle that", I said to myself, you bet your ass I can handle it sweetheart. Or more accurately, my ass.
Anyone that has run through a kitchen in the summer for a 10 hour shift wearing poly-blend pants knows all about Monkey Ass. It is the debilitating itchy assed condition that creeps up on you about hour 4 brought on by sweat and the beer shits you had from getting bombed the night before. A truly unpleasant condition for those afflicted that can't go clean it up due to being weeded on the floor.
Unpleasant as well for those that piss off an itchy-assed server.
The girls ordered 3 Border Brownies, basically a hot brownie with a scoop of ice cream and pecan praline sauce, for which they needed 8 spoons. They got all that and more.
To the soundtrack of my friends hysterical laughter, I took all 8 spoons and scratched my itch. Honest to god, there was literally ass hair and lint on the damn things as well as little droplets of sweat. I served them the brownies, and watched from a distance...
Oh the joy that swelled in my heart as I watched the lovely little kiddies spoon the wonderful brownies into their mouths. I even strolled by to ask, "Is everything ok?" in my most solicitous waiter voice. "Yeah, shouldn't it be?" a snot nosed teen replied, as she shoveled a generous spoonful of ice cream and ass particles into her mouth. "Yes. Yes it should. And yes it is."
Of course, they stiffed me, but it was worth it.
I never did anything like that before or since. I kind of felt guilty about it after it happened, but went out that night for a few beers with the staff and forgot all about it. Sometimes it is ok to have beer shits.
—Monkey Ass, West Paterson
I work at a chain restaurant which shows many sporting events in part of the restaurant. I love my job, but about once a month or so our boss insists on showing pay-per-view wresting events, which you can imagine, doesn't bring in the classiest of crowds. Many of the people who frequent these events show up 4 hours before the show begins, tying up the best tables, order appetizers instead of meals, and leave next to nothing in the way of tips.
This last week, I had what I thought was a halfway decent couple waiting for the show to start. They came in at 4:00, even though the wrestling didn't start until 8:00. I gave them good service, kept their drinks filled, and always had a smile when passing their table. They kept my booth tied up for 7 hours!!!! When the wrestling was over, and the mass exodus left the restaurant, I was infuriated to find that they hadn't left one red cent on my table.
The next day, low and behold, guess who shows up in my section? They looked a little embarrassed when they saw I was their waitress. I didn't say a word to them, just politely (yet a little more coldly) took their order, brought their drinks and smiled. But, I just couldn't let their thoughtlessness go completely unaccounted for. I brought their plates but before setting them in front of them, asked, "Weren't you here for the wrestling last night?" The guy almost choked and said, "Uh, yeah." I said, "Yeah, I remember you..." gave them a hateful stare, sat their food in front of them, then said with an evil tone of voice..."Enjoy your food..." and smiled slyly. They picked at it and looked at each other with very worried looks on their faces.
I didn't do anything to their food, but I think sometimes letting their imaginations run away with what MIGHT have been done is better than the real thing.
BTW, this time they left 85 cents....
One night I had a man say to me "I want my eggs over easy, and if they come out wrong I will throw them at you". Oh I definitely think not. So my co-worker and friend Tammy and I decide to do the old bump and spill routine to this guy. I loaded up my tray with drinks and walked over to the table. Just as I went to put down the first drink Tammy rammed into me from behind causing me to completely drench this guy in drinks.
By now the whole restaurant was in on this as we work at a 24 hour restaurant and this was the graveyard shift so we basically knew everyone in there anyway. This guy jumped up and screamed so loud that I thought he was going to deck me. I kept apologizing while trying not to crack up. Now he starts to curse me out and then looks around and realizes everyone is glaring at him and the cook is hanging through the kitchen window with a BIG knife in his hands. The guy leaves.
He comes back in a week later and I get to serve him again. After I take his order and am walking away he calls me a bitch under his breath. Well a customer sitting behind him hears this and jumps up and demands him to apologize. The jerky guy refuses and tells me to call the cops as he has been threatened and I point to another table next to him and tell him they are three off duty cops. They look at him and tell him unless he apologizes to me that he will be in a lot of trouble with the law. He yells that he was just threatened by the other guy and the cops told him they heard no such thing and all they heard was his nasty remark. He ran out of the restaurant screaming that it was a conspiracy against him.
It was such awesome revenge and I saw that my customers really
cared about how I was treated.
—Tazzy, New Jersey
Some years ago I worked as a waiter at a downtown restaurant in wonderfully sophisticated Harrisburg, Pa. We had an interesting mix of clients, some lobbyists, some tourists, and the occasional local. One night a couple came in, a man in his early fifties with a girl who probably wasn't even 30. I smelled disaster, especially when I observed the gentleman's behavior. He was totally wussed-out in every way and was nearly drooling at her. After all of the prelim stuff, he proceeded to order combination seafood for both of them. Now, that's a bad sign - trying to impress with deep-fried seafood, I hardly think so. This guy was a giant pain, from pretending to know about wine, to being fond of ordering everything one at a time. I couldn't help but notice him turning on the old charm to this young babe who probably had the sharpness of a spatula. I ran my ass off, and actually was foolhardy enough to think that if I sucked up a little I might get a decent tip. How foolish, after a $65.00 check, he so kindly left me $2.65 cents. NO
Here comes the good part. As the couple left I noticed the owner in a half snicker, shaking his head. When I told him what had happened, he replied in his favorite Greek phrase, and then proceeded to ask me if I knew who the guy was. Of course, I didn't so George, the owner, told me he was a clothing salesman at a local downtown haberdashery.
The next day, I passed the clothing store and couldn't resist, after peering through the window and seeing, you guessed it, Mr. $2.65 himself. I went in, and knew that he didn't stand a chance of remembering me, since I wasn't part of his sweet young things cleavage. I proceeded to walk back to his suit department and try on every possible suit and sport coat imaginable. Left garments in the dressing room, and no matter how good he told me things looked, I ignored him and proceeded say "I don't like it" to every item in the store. I thanked him and left, figuring I had gotten far more than $2.65 in satisfaction after making him run his ass off.
—Carl, Harrisburg, PA
I am a manager in a large chain restaurant. On a weekday afternoon, one of my best servers is complaining about these two men, that come in about once a week and complain about everything, get something free, and leave a cheap tip. On this particular day I was feeling vengeful. So after there complaint, I replaced their inedible food, (they order the same thing every week) and they paid their whole bill. They sat there moaning and complaining how they never get anything right in this place, and the prices are outrages, the dumbasses paid with a company credit card and left a $2.00 tip on a $40.00 something check.
After they left I call the company they work for and asked for the person in charge. I proceed to tell their manager that I had two female guest in my restaurant, who had stopped me on their way out and they couldn't enjoy their lunch because they were so offended by these men from his company that they would have left if it wasn't her friends birthday. (All of this is completely untrue, they didn't say a word). I just thought he would like to know how his employees conduct themselves in public while spending company funds, and in uniform.
He thanked me and said he would take care of the problem. The next day one of the men called my District Manager and said I was out of line, she said if it were my employees and I was footing the bill I would want to know too. Needless to say these two asses have not been back, and we could care less. Gotcha!
A manager who never forgets where she came from.
Public Enemy, Dayton
I bartend at a club that gets its fair share of whiskey tango (White trash). You know those types that drink white zinfandel spritzers and ask if you got cans of bud. It is sort of odd because we have a cover charge and our drinks are some what expensive. Any ho one night a gank-load came in. They must of all rented a bus at the trailer park and saved up their money from giving plasma. It was pure insanity i was running my ass off and getting stiffed so many times i thought I was working at a soup kitchen. It was summer so we has that great problem of fruit flies swarming and dieing every where. So I found out a new way to play "If you are rude to me you will get the same treatment" . I would find the glasses that were sitting up and had several dead and alive fruit flies in them and then I would serve the drinks of their choosing in these putrid, death ridden glassed. How many fruit flies can I get in to a drink before I serve it to these swine who liked to swear at me and have a bad odor. What a blessed event
I work at a typical college-town greasy spoon where the clientele is mostly hungover frat fucks and obese white trash. A couple years ago, a group of asshole smarmy businessmen would come in every Thursday night, demand like seven separate checks AFTER they each ordered different beers (the beers have to be rung up first before you can get them from the bartender), and generally be pretentious, better-than-thou dickheads. Like, OK, polyester slacks and a cheap briefcase do not a Donald Trump make, OK? Get back in your Ford Taurus and leave me the hell alone.
So anyway, one night I was waiting on them and they were especially annoyingcondescending, not even looking at me when I asked them a question, etc. Ohnot only were they just jerks in the first place, they'd come in about a half hour before closing and only order like a basket of onion rings and a beer each. That's why the separate check thing was so obnoxious. Anyway, they made me so mad that I went back to the kitchen and told the cook (now my fiancé) to do whatever he felt like to their food. So he opened the "grease trap", which was full of all kinds of unidentifiable floating things, dirty water, etc., and swished all the already-fried onion rings in it, then put them in a basket to serve. I took them out to the table with a smile and gleefully watched as the biggest moron of the bunch ate them with gusto. Hee hee! Businessmen suck!
Anonymous, Cleveland, OH
Once I had this table whose after-dinner mints I violated. It was during the busy season. Late in the year. Somewhere around the holidays. I was on my third double-shift in a row. It was the dinner shift and I was in the window section. Everybody wants to sit in the window section. Watch the people walking by. Look at all the fancy cars. Photosynthesize. Whatever. Most of the people had reservations, and my section was full all evening. As soon as a table would leave, it would be cleared, set up and reset. Now whenever I was in a full section situation, I would try to divide myself evenly amongst the tables. No special time for any one table. I couldn't afford it. The one table might be happy and tip me, but the other four would cut me to shreds. (Not literally.) But sometimes the rules must be broken. As was the case this evening.
Table number forty-three was set with a young, non-descript oriental family. That is to say I knew they were oriental, but of which branch of the oriental tree they were plucked I did not know. They spoke little to no English and so I was forced to spend extra time trying to figure out their order. "Robster, robster . . ." the father kept saying. "Would you like a pound and a half or a pound and a quarter?" I'd ask. "Robster, robster," he would say. This went on for some time, but I think I eventually got their order. So I brought lobster for everyone. I can't remember what they weighed. The lobsters not the people: Mom, dad and the two small children.
Around the same time forty-three was sat, table forty-five was sat with a heavy-set, middle-aged white couple dressed in their ill-fitting Sunday best. They each had a mixed drink, then they ordered appetizers and then their entrees. Fairly typical ordering procedure. Nothing upsetting or out of the ordinary about that, but just wait till you hear what they did.
When they finished their mixed drinks they each had iced tea. That's right - iced tea. I brought their appetizers and cleared the mixed drink glasses. They said thanks. Just like that. They seemed to be OK so I left them to tend to the other tables. The kitchen was rolling, and I soon had out the entrees which I placed before them and removed their appetizer plates. "May I bring you anything else?" I asked. They said no, and I was off. A brief while later the busboy, (also named Tony), came over to where I was standing to tell me that the heavyset couple was not going to tip me. It seems they felt that I was ignoring them because (and get this) the busboy had to refill their iced tea and water glasses two times. "Is that what they said?" I asked, and he says "Well when I was refillin' their iced tea the second time the man asks 'Shouldn't our waiter be doing that?' and I tell him 'When I'm busy he helps me out, and when he's busy I help him out.'" So they say that I don't look busy to them and they want to make sure the busboy gets a tip and I don't. Those common petty bastards.
Then I think to myself - what am I going to do. I've been working my tail off for the last three days, and now Mr. and Mrs. Fat Ass American don't think I should be tipped because the busboy has decided to do his job and refill the iced tea and water glasses. So I tell the manager, "Peggy I think you should go talk to these customers because they're not going to tip me and I really haven't done anything wrong." She goes to the table and asks, "Was there something wrong with the service?" "The waiter's been ignoring us all night," they say. "Did your drinks get here on time and OK?" "Yes the drinks were fine." "Did the food take too long?" "No, no it didn't." "Was it cooked to your specifications?" "Yes. It was very good food." "So what was the problem?" Peggy asks somewhat bewildered. "Well the busboy had to do most of his work," said the fella. "Yes he filled our iced tea and water glasses twice," added his spouse. "Well that is part of the busboy's job." "Maybe so, but we still think the waiter could have paid us a little more attention."
That settles it. They just were not going to tip me after I'd given them decent service and then they were foolish enough to let me find out about it before they left or maybe they thought that Tony wouldn't tell me. Maybe they thought that the promise of a nice waiter sized tip would be tantamount to hush money and he'd keep his filthy secret far, far from the likes of me. Well maybe they thought all that and more but I will tell you right here and now they were wrong because he did tell me and I did know. Something must be done, I thought...
I go over to the table and begin clearing their diner plates. "Did either of you care for coffee or desert?" I ask, and the guy - he's not even looking at me. He's got his arms up across the table and he's holding his wife's hands and they are looking into each other's eyes and he says boldly , "No we needed you around ten minutes ago." That's when I realized that he had not wanted me around to fill his iced tea and water glasses as he claimed but he instead had wanted me around that evening so that he could bounce his witty banter off of me and amuse and impress his wife. At least that is what I surmised given the evidence that I was presented with. I'd seen that type all too often.
He was the big mouth funny guy type who just likes to have a few laughs off the waiter whose younger and more attractive than he is. He couldn't impress her during the meal because I was so busy, but now he had his chance to fix me good right in front of his wife and I knew all about it, and I believe he knew I knew and this made him happy because he knew there was nothing I could do about it. Maybe not, but I was going to try.
"Well OK then I'll just bring you the bill." He hands me a credit card, and I take it to the end of the bar to run it through the credit card machine. It clears. So I take the card and the voucher and I go to the hostess station and get two silver mints, but I don't take them to the table. No not just yet. Instead I head up the back staircase to the fourth floor where I know no one ever comes. I set the credit card book down on the stairs and unwrapped each of the mints. Carefully so that the wrappers are still intact. Then I undo my belt and drop my pants and undershorts. I take each mint one at a time and shove it up my ass. I then push it back out using my rectal muscles and rewrap them. That is of course after I've inspected them for any visible debris. Then I pull up my pants and head down the stairs. I walk over to the table. Set the check and mints before them and say "Thank you very much and have a nice evening." After they leave I go over to the table and find a nickel and two empty mint wrappers. I believe that was the best tip of the evening.
—Tony H., Richmond VA
Tony's website can be visited here.
There was a rather impertinent gentleman who came into my restaurant late one night and before he was even sat started complaining, and screaming discrimination for having to sit in the back (it was late my station was the only one open , and I was in the back). He had an adorable little girl, and what I thought was his wife. After he screamed at the host and my manager he was sat up front, way out of my way and I started to kiss his ass, in an attempt to smooth things over. (I should have known better) After, getting my ass run off for two hours, serving dinner all the way to coffee and dessert, I received $8 on $125 tab. I even carried his leftovers to the car because they had so much stuff for the little girl. The next week I was in the same station and He came in again. This time with what was really his wife!
I casually walked up and spoke to him as if we were old friends. I also asked where his adorable little girl was and before I could get it out he was swearing he had never been here before and I must be mistaken. I told him I remembered him plain as day, but where was his wife and little girl. Needless to say his wife stood up and screamed" I knew you were seeing her again" They left and I was relieved not to never have to serve him again!
A Rant from the Bar
First of all, understand something. Unless you knew them before they began bartending, bartenders are not your friends. Think of us like dancers. We are there for one reason only. To take your money. I will act buddy-buddy with you. Pretend you are the funniest fucking guy on Earth. But I don’t give a shit whether you live or die. You are my income. I will forget about you a nanosecond after you leave my bar. You pay me, and I move on to the next mark. I am not there to make friends. I am there to pay my rent. And if letting you think that I’m your bud will get you to tip me more…. Then I’m your new best friend. Until you stand up. Then you’re nobody again. The sooner you realize this, the better off you’ll be. Unless you’re a woman. In that case, I’m after two things. Your money, and… take a guess. I don’t care if you’re with your boyfriend. When he goes to the bathroom, you might as well have come in alone.
Now to the real point of this rant. The above sentiments come from one thing only. Customers SUCK. ALL customers suck. For what we put up with, none of you tip us enough. None of you stupid fuckers realize exactly what it takes for two bartenders to keep their customers happy. I work in a restaurant; so consequently, I am making drinks for 200 other people at the same time. Yet you dumb-ass fucking drunks will bitch and moan about how much ice is in your drink. Or you can’t taste the liquor. FUCK YOU. Pay me and shut up. I have too many other people to worry about.
Now, there are hotels near my job, so we get a lot of people from the Midwest and overseas into my bar. To all of those idiot living in Europe and Mid-America…. LEARN HOW TO TIP YOU HICKS AND EUROTRASH!!!! Leaving me 30 cents on a round is just going to get you a longer wait for your next round. I loooooooove making people wait. It pisses them off to no end. The only thing that makes my job worthwhile is the petty revenge I get to take out. But I’ll get into my revenges in a sec. Just a last word to the Hicks and Trash…. In an urban part of the US, you tip at least a dollar a round. And that’s even low. But it’s acceptable. Taking notes, hicks? You cheap fucking rubes. I know the cost of living is very low where you’re from, but if you can’t afford to pay for a vacation to the big city… then don’t come. You’re not welcome.
Mmmmm…. Revenge. What do I do when someone pisses me off? Well, the best thing is cutting someone off for no reason. If you even vaguely insult me, I’ll cut you off and kick you out. If you get slobbering drunk, I’ll cut you off and kick you out. And my word is the last word. My manager can’t override me. Either learn how to drink, or learn how to be polite. My word is the last word. Ha-fucking-ha. Another method of revenge is your drink. Piss me off, I’ll water you down. Complain about it, and I’ll cut you off. Ha-ha. Fuck you. And god forbid you order food, and then proceed to piss me off. I won’t even get into what I do there. Suffice it to say that if you’re ordering food… be EXTRA nice to me. I have complete control over your digestive tract. Be nice, or else. The most satisfying bit of revenge, though, is ignoring you. I love that. And again, if you bitch about it, out you go.
And that’s about it. Just remember… your bartender can
make your night great, or I can make your night very short. It’s up to you.
Now, all this being said, if you are one of those very very rare people who
actually tip well, then I’ll be looking out for you. I’ll buy you a couple
of rounds. I’ll pour heavy. I’ll pour light. Whatever. Just never, EVER say
this phrase: “Just do your job”. No no no. You say that phrase, and my job
suddenly includes kicking your ass out. I don’t care if you haven’t had a
drink. I can lie and say that you smelled of liquor when you came in. I could
say you’re already drunk. Once I cut you off, that’s it. Get your things and
get out. HaHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. And always remember kiddies… it takes 47
muscles to frown. It only takes 4 muscles to raise your arm and bitch-slap that
—Uncle Bob, East Rutherford
As most any longtime server has most likely endured, I once worked a
shift while the flu bug was whoopin' my ass like a hillbilly abortion. Oh
man...fever, sniffles, body aches, deep bellowing coughs. It was horrible.
Why was I working when I was so sick? Well, the douche bag manager at the joint was a real battleaxe. She wouldn't let me go home unless I would return with a doctors note. Uninsured vagabond that I was at the time, I was more scared of paying a doctor bill than I was of dropping dead in some schmuck's Tortilla soup.
Yadda yadda yadda.
Too weak to argue with my fearless leader any longer, I went on to endure the shift from hell. I was a pariah. I was a Typhoid Mary. I was a living, breathing, envelope of unidentified white powder.
Don't get me wrong, having been contagious, I realized I had no business
working. But I couldn't lose the job, so I mustered on.
People, workers and customers alike, clearly wanted me at arm's length.
But generally they treated me with a modicum of human decency.
But one guy...ooohhhhhh, one prick....
This dude gives me his credit card and tells me, "I can't get outta this germ-farm fast enough! If I get sick, I'm coming back and taking it out of YOUR ass."
He stuck his finger at me, too.
Yeah, it was pretty rude any way you look at it. Oh boy, I was pretty cranky at the time too, so I knew I was gonna do something to this prick, I just didn't know what yet. So I go in the back, and I do the whole payment process thing and, low and behold the card comes up declined. This seemed to me like a nice clean karmic victory, but like I said, I was feeling cranky. I thought to myself..."Well, maybe if his card can't take it out of his bank account, maybe he can take it out of my ass?" I grinned.
"Hell, that must be what he meant by that. I understand now. He wasn't really threatening me. No one's that big a jerk. He wants me to use his card to access the bank of my ass!"
So I untied my apron, reached behind, swiped Mr. Prick's Amex right between my sweaty, hairy, germ-ridden ass cheeks. It didn't go through the first time, so I tried swiping the other side as well. Unfortunately, it was declined again. With a deep satisfaction, I apologetically informed asshead that I tried swiping it several times, but I that I was afraid his card was declined.
I went home eventually and rode out the rest of the flu. When I was better, I thought that maybe I overreacted and went to far. Maybe I fell a little to far into the dark side.
Captain Calamity, Columbus, OH
I worked for a 24 hour cafe that was adjacent to a college campus for three
years. My job title was busgirl, however it consisted of much much more than
that. I was to collect dirty dishes from table, wash them, make sure the bar was
stocked, and run food. This was the job of only one person every shift. As
a food runner you were to take the food to the table and then go about the three
hundred other tasks you had on your hands at that given moment.
Every Thursday night during the summer there was a festival in the city so we would get absolutely swamped with drunk sorority girls, frat boys and general assholes who thought they could take run of our small cafe. One Thursday night in particular I was overrun with dirty dishes to collect so patrons could have a clean place to sit as well as making sure they had clean plates to eat off of all the while I was still running food. As I was trying to play catch up from the over abundance of customers with no where to sit, I had a girl at a table scream across the cafe for me to "come here immediately". I walked over to her table and asked what she needed. She starts to become irate that the veggie burger she ordered wasn't well done. If you've ever eaten a veggie burger you'd know that there is no well done. It's vegetables and soy concocted into a patty. There's no meat to cook well. I tried to explain to her while holding a handful of dirty plates that there really is no way to cook a pre-cooked veggie burger well. I guess this sorority girl thought she was going to win this one and demanded I take her order to the kitchen that moment and get it right this time. With my free hand I grabbed her plate and began to walk away. At which time I overhear her mutter to her friends " that's right bitch".....
I'd had it. I was sweaty , dirty, and way under appreciated at this point. I strolled into the kitchen with the girls' plate in my my hand explaining to the cook the situation. The cook laughed, took the veggie burger from the plate, threw it on the floor where there was a pile of grease, then proceeded to cough up what would be the most disgusting luggie I had ever witnessed. She then took the patty and put it on the grill for another 5 minutes to get it "well done".
I walk casually to the girls table and place in front of her. Smile and say "the cooks sincerest apologies". She rolled her eyes and said thanks. I sat down and watched her eat every bite. This is a lesson in how not to speak to someone who has control over the food you're going to be digesting.
I was going through a divorce and needed extra cash. I was forty years old and had never waited tables. What an eye-opener. A sympathetic restaurant manager hired me, based on my "maturity.” Within a month I received the restaurant's coveted "mystery shopper award". I enjoyed waiting tables, and management loved me. A few weeks later, a rude awakening:
Five uppity women clearly had it out for me. I had never, ever, been treated with so little respect. What a shock to realize how very unkind people can be. Following the meal, the ring-leader of the pack asked to speak with the manager, claiming the food and particularly the service, was despicable. The manager offered a free dessert to go; it was the only thing that brought a smile to this fat , BITCH’s face.
Okay....she wants a free dessert? Strawberry Cheesecake you say? Fine! I’ll give her fat ass a dessert she'll never forget! I pulled a slice of cheesecake out of the freezer, and carefully placed it in the Styrofoam container. Sitting along the expo line was a bottle of Tabasco sauce. The wheels started turning. For this one moment I pushed my mature side, aside. I completely obliterated the cheesecake and dumped half the bottle of Tabasco over it. Then, to camouflage my attack, I poured strawberry sauce over the Tabasco. I envisioned what would happen when the she-devil got home and took a spoonful… take a bite out of this, BITCH! Dropped the to-go bag off at the table, and all hell broke loose. Uh oh… too much Tabasco. The fumes permeated through the bag. The she-wolf opened the container and screamed, her eyes burning. The manager rushed to the table, believing that someone must be dying. Police were called… all-points bulletin out for my ass.
I escaped through the back door.
Postscript: Six months later I had the nerve to re-enter the establishment (as a diner, of course.) Restaurants are notorious for having a high-turnover, so surely no one would recognize me. My girlfriend and I sat at the farthest-most booth to avoid detection. A young man, whom I had never met, walked up to our booth and placed a bottle of Tabasco sauce on our table, saying, “The kitchen crew asked me to drop this off, and to tell you, “WE ARE NOT WORTHY”!!!!
Cindy - Annapolis, MD
DUI with that?
Oh, man! What a night I've just had! I knew as soon as
I left the restaurant this story is good enough for The Stained Apron! I was a
closer tonight and therefore in charge of general phone calls. Some guy (I'll
refer to him as "Fuckwit" hereafter) called at 8 pm to check what time we
closed. "11:30", I replied, "but we stop taking orders at 11:15." We hung up and
I went about my shift.
After a very tiring and unprofitable shift, Fuckwit waltzes in at 11:19 with 9 others in tow!! He even identified himself as the guy who called at about 8 pm! I overstepped my authority when I said, "Sir, I remember saying to you that we stop serving at 11:15. Its 11:20 and we close in 10 minutes. The kitchen is being cleaned!" Fuckwit then said, "Well, if you don't close for 10 minutes then we can still eat in this place!"
Fine then, Fuckwit! So I led them to their (filthy) table, all 10 of them smirking and snickering. Fuming, I took their whole order (all the while being called sweetheart and baby!!) and took the abuse from the cooks when I broke the happy news to them. Revenge is soooo sweet, though.
I realized about halfway through taking their order that these guys had driven to the restaurant drunk as hell! I hoped and prayed that they would still be at least over the legal limit after eating, because while they chowed on their baby back ribs, I called my best guy friend and told him the situation. He is a 2-year officer on our little town's police force.
As hoped, Fuckwit and Co. staggered out of the place at about 12:15, still pretty trashed. They left me nothing on an $80 tab, so I'm not at all sorry about subsequent events! (In my "baby back ribs" restaurant, we aren't allowed to add gratuity to large parties - it sucks) As they walked to their cars, two police cars **happened** to cruise into the parking lot! They all got the usual "You guys ain't been drinkin', right?" from the officers, to which they all replied in the negative. But none of them would drive away and risk a DUI !!
And so, with me and my fellow closer looking outside and laughing, the officers patrolled up and down the street, while Fuckwit and Co. sat in their cars on this frigid January night for an hour and a half until they were sober enough to risk the road! I enjoyed how they were prevented from leaving, just as they had deliberately done to the servers and cooks!
I was cracking up as Fuckwit finally drove away, and wondered if he would ever realize he "gave" me a 50% tip, as he left both "tip" and "total" spaces blank on the receipt in his drunken state!
AdAstra16b, Anaheim, CA