Chaos Reigns in Restaurant On College Grad Day

October 2, 2015

in Diner Stories

I’m a hospitality worker in a college town. This was “One of those Red Letter Days” – university graduation. If you work in said environment, you know the deal. It is a super busy, super popular “All Weekend” brunch joint. It’s a local standard for tourists and students alike. Every year those days come around. Big money. Big headaches. Overbooked reservations, people adding to parties at the last minute, campers and such.

That eight top that shows up twenty minutes late with only three people present. Yeah, that’s happening. Forty-five minutes later they say that the rest of the party is still looking for parking. Now it’s a thirteen top and they start with the, “Why can’t you accommodate us?” spiel.

All of those college girlfriend “Besties” are shrill, shrieking and homing in on each other with “OH MY GODS!!!” and “I’LL MISS YOU SOOOO MUCH!!!” They are just all OVER the place. There is also lots of bro hugging in cap and gown. COULD EVERYBODY PLEASE JUST SIT DOWN!!!!

Table 23 is merging into Table 45. That’s not possible! One’s on the patio, the other is in the parlor! It’s physically impossible, but it is still happening. I’m not sure how it occurred, but it did. We had to call the police. It’s a nightmare.

Me, like all the other severs, are out of our minds. There are so many things going wrong just as they always do in these situations. “If you don’t need to be in the wait station, THEN GET THE HELL OUT! I’M TALKING TO YOU ROBERT! Stop leaning against the ice machine and texting. YOU ARE IN MY FRIGGIN WAY!!!” You suck as a server by the way.

Cold, hard stares from many, oh so many, people from the hostess stand. An odd cluster of people in the main dining room. Getting a bad vibe off it. Not my station. Don’t care. In and out. Here and there. My station is falling apart around me and… Are those cops in the dining room? Those are two cops… in… the… dinning room. And they’re around that cluster of people. WTF?

All of the resi’s and seating times are screwed up. Somehow, someway, this family made it to a table that wasn’t theirs. Being told that we could not accommodate them at that table, at that time, this family was straight up, “Nope. We’ve waited long enough. We’re sitting down here. This is our table. We need to be served.”

My poor manager did all he could to reason with them. He told them that under these circumstances he could not serve them, at all. Could they please either wait until we had a table available or vacate the premises. Nope. We aren’t going anywhere until after you serve us. In closing, if it gets to the point where we are calling the police, give it up. YOU ARE NOT GETTING SERVICE! Go away. Did you just really cause a situation where there is law enforcement involved on the day of your son or daughter’s day of graduation?

Finally, and strangely, race became an issue. The family was Asian. Chinese I think. They accused my manager and our establishment of being racist. My manager is Asian.

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