Ten Reasons Why Your Server Thinks You’re a Douche

March 15, 2016

in Dining Hell Commentary

Intentionally screwing with the people who have access to your food makes about as much sense as lighting a cigarette while filling up your gas tank. However, there never seems to be a shortage of culinary warriors who insist on running face-first into a wall of pretense every chance they get. Whether motivated by ignorance or mere entitled douchebaggery, some diners just seem to possess an inherent knack for being huge twatsicles whenever they set foot in a restaurant – for no apparent reason other than they can.

Here then are a few examples that will move you to the front of the biggest spunkchunk I’ve encountered today list every damn time.

You don’t consolidate your requests. Here is the iced tea you requested. Thank you so much. And can I get some extra lemon with that? Here is the extra lemon you requested. That’s awesome. My friend here was looking at your wine list and would like a glass of chardonnay. Here is the chardonnay you requested. You’re amazing. This bread is so yummy, we already ran out. Do you think you could bring us some more? Here is the bread you requested. Awesome sauce! Is it too late to change our order? I think we want what that other table is having! Goes into kitchen and stabs self in the neck with a fork. Has anyone seen our waiter? He hasn’t been here in, like, five minutes.

You pretend like you’re 5 years old on your birthday. Birthdays are like assholes… everybody has one. The annual anniversary of the precise day the universe chose to shit you out may be your personal yearly orgasmic explosion, but the rest of us are too busy scraping by to feel overly celebratory that we’re graced with the end product of your parent’s lust. If you’re old enough to drive a car and still expect complimentary dessert while being serenaded off-key during dinner by minimum wage restaurant employees, then growing up needs to be at the top of your to-do list as you get older.

You ask for recommendations and then order what you were going to anyway. There’s nothing more enticing to a server than an adventurous customer with money to burn. Servers stay on chef’s good sides by selling the daily features they create, and the best shifts are often given to those who have a knack for peddling what they’re told. There’s nothing wrong with being the guy who comes in twice a month and always orders the Hawaiian Chicken with rice pilaf, but making your server go through the motions of describing stuff you have no intention of ordering is a little like finding out a call girl is only there for a kiss.

You act surprised when your credit card is declined. There are always those special breed of customers who go out to eat while leaving their money behind. These are the same taintplows who produce ten maxed-out credit cards and act incredulous when the server returns them accompanied by the declined notice from the POS system. They’re also the same assbabies who swear up one side and down the other that there’s money in the checking account that their debit card mysteriously can’t seem to access. Then – having exhausted all the plastic shuffling their wallets will allow – they invariably cough up the cash they were carrying in the first place.

You are the guy who would piss you off where you work. Being an asshole toward restaurant workers takes about as much courage as the hero who lights a cat on fire. The loose-wristed peesqueezer who treats service employees as if they were subservients is – not coincidentally – usually the same coward who gets regularly trampled either at home or his own place of employment and is looking for a little misdirected payback. However, bullying people who aren’t in a position to fight back doesn’t make you a swashbuckler as much as an opportunist trying to pick a fistfight with an armless opponent.

You expect stronger drinks than everyone else for the same price. Fewer words make a server cringe more than and make it a strong one after receiving a drink order. Attempting to bypass recipes and standard units of measurement to save a buck or two doesn’t make you look as suave as it does the cheap jackload you invariably are. Like most other industries, restaurants don’t remain in business by giving shit away, and you asking for more than the normally allotted portion jeopardizes everyone’s job just so you can feel like you were able to get over. If you want a double, pay for a double. If not, then either STFU and drink what you pay for or sneak in a flask and spike your cola when no one’s looking like the rest of the low-rent spoozenibblers who exude entitlement for no apparent reason.

You behave like Captain Creeper. Gentlemen, here’s a tip from your server. You’d have a much greater chance of getting laid by your waitress if you worked alongside her rather than slipping her your phone number scrawled on your credit card receipt next to your ten percent tip. Overly susceptible dudes wrestling with either loneliness or a mid-life crisis are a dime a dozen in the restaurant/bar biz, and mistaking the smile and flirtations of your waitress to be anything more than a sales technique to milk you out of a bigger tip makes you fodder for the staff who compare notes about their craziest and creepiest customers when they’re having drinks at the end of the night. And then winding up in bed together.

You lie. So the last time I was here I had a really bad experience and the manager said she’d take care of my dinner the next time I came in. Really? And who was the manager? I don’t remember her name. The tall one. All of our managers are male. Maybe it wasn’t a manager, then. It must’ve been the hostess. Our hostesses aren’t allowed to authorize complimentary meals without a manager’s authorization. I don’t know who it was, then. All I know is that I was promised a free meal! By who? Can I talk to a manager, please?

You recreate the space-time continuum. The next time you get pissed off and begin throwing a tantrum because “you’ve been sitting there waiting 45 minutes for your food to arrive,” remember this – every order that gets rung in is also logged with the time it was entered. That means we can and will check to see if you’re telling the truth or if your hunger is feeding your frenzy to be a lying piss sponge. For some individuals, restaurants are often black holes where time seems to magically stand still when they’re waiting for shit to arrive – and unfortunately these same people lose track of the very same time two hours later after they’ve finished eating and are sitting there chatting about their Facebook status while a hundred other people are waiting for a table.

You request a non-existent steak temperature. The mythological realm between medium and medium-well can be located precisely in the same stratosphere as either Atlantis or Narnia. You have a better chance of having your picture taken with Bigfoot while riding piggyback on the Loch Ness Monster than getting your porterhouse cooked somewhere between rare and medium-rare – because the temperature doesn’t exist! Ordering anything outside of the five universally accepted steak temperature choices is a sure sign that you either (a) don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about, or (b) don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about.

– Jeri Velgreen

My blog: customer crap

{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Your Boss March 18, 2016 at 5:23 am

this is why people hate restaurant servers. such pretentious people.

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jvelgreen March 28, 2016 at 11:41 pm

No…This is why people who self-gloss with screen names like Your Boss aren't taken seriously.

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Cynita April 19, 2016 at 12:02 pm

Maybe in some fine dining places you'll get the pretentious vibe but most people I've worked with over the years, from the front of the house to the back of the house, are super down to earth folks. It's hard freaking work most of the time so if you come off like an asshole or walk around with an "Emily cloud", a term that the restaurant I work for now uses referencing a past employee that was beyond a Debbie Downer, you just won't last.

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jvelgreen April 19, 2016 at 4:21 pm

Spoken like a true service veteran.

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blog reader March 18, 2016 at 11:09 am

c'mon Jeri stop reposting your blog here. Are you running that low on views?

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Heather March 19, 2016 at 9:44 am

You need to find another line of work. You are obviously not meant for this one. The way you describe birthdays and how humans are born shows a disturbing side that is the antithesis of "people person", which I would think is necessary for success in the restaurant business.

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jvelgreen March 20, 2016 at 1:35 am

Being what you call a "people person" doesn't entail tolerating stupidity and entitlement. Your comments sound like you've never worked a day in a restaurant but are quick to judge those who do.

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Amber May 6, 2016 at 2:51 pm

Seriously the comment on birthday perks is absurd, if your employer opts to offer them, don't whine because custoemr utilize them. Just do your job and stop being a whiney bitch.

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jvelgreen May 6, 2016 at 3:06 pm

My…You are one precious little snowflake, aren't you.

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Ali K June 8, 2016 at 9:43 pm

The problem is that certain people feel entitled to free shit on their birthdays. I'm guessing you might be one of them.
As a server for over 10 years, I am more than happy to bring a birthday dessert, anniversary champagne, even celebratory shots to a cool table who slyly lets it slip that it's a special occasion. It's more than annoying when a bratty 35 year old isn't satisfied with our selection of free desserts and instead wants the $10 option or something ridiculous.
It's your birthday. It's lots of people's. Hell, it might even be your server's since a lot of us prefer to not take a Friday or Saturday shift off to act like a baby and get free cake on our "special day".

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saffie March 24, 2016 at 10:47 am

I completely agree with Heather. You have a flair for descriptive writing. You should devote yourself entirely to your writing, instead of having to cater to self-important hag bags like her.

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jvelgreen March 28, 2016 at 11:56 pm

I appreciate your kind words and simultaneously accept your gracious offer to subsidize my hobby.

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Getoutwhileyoucan July 14, 2016 at 3:09 pm

Heather…you have obviously never held a job in a restaurant or in public service of any kind. To be overly sweet and indulging in the restaurant industry is to be eaten alive by a population of restaurant patrons who are – the vast majority of the time – ill equipped in common etiquette and ill advised as to how to conduct one self in a public dining experience.

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Datsuhn March 21, 2016 at 7:53 pm

I never worked in a restaurant before but I did at a coffee shop and I used to eat lunch at a nearby restaurant. Some of my buddies were waiters and chefs. They work super hard so whenever I do go out and eat at a place I always make sure to be polite and make the waiters time with my go as smoothly as possible because many people can really be dickheads.

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Katie March 22, 2016 at 4:41 pm

I can relate to the stress and aggravation of some customers. It's usually the regulars that are the most rude to us. I do serve some great customers, but there have been plenty of moments where all of the above things have happened.

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Zombie March 25, 2016 at 10:38 am

Some of these are unfair.

Credit Cards have increased their frequency of "fraud alerts" which render a card inoperable until a possible fraud is confirmed. So, yes, you may have a rejected card and the customer does have the money in the bank. The customer may be legitimately surprised when that fraud alrt is placed on the card.

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random canadian March 25, 2016 at 5:25 pm

Epic writing. I think waiters & waitresses are abused often by custies. Only a pure fool would piss off those handling your food IMHO.

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jvelgreen March 28, 2016 at 11:58 pm

Word.

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Server96251 April 4, 2016 at 2:17 am

This is so funny, and so true! I've been serving for almost 4 years now (almost done school, then I can finally escape this job), and it seems like some guests just come in with the intention of ruining your shift. Serving at a fine dining restaurant I found guests to be much better, because at least they don't say things like, "Wow! I'm paying x dollars for this?"

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Cynita April 19, 2016 at 11:45 am

Been a server for over 16 years at fine dining, family style, corporate, and hipster restaurants and I've definitely experienced all of these things. One of my favorites is the guests that hail you to their table like a cab after you have been by to start their service multiple times and they were either on their cell phone or talking to each other and completely ignoring you. You rush over and are greeted with a "we're ready", ok great, what can I get for you? I'll just take a ceaser salad with grilled chicken. Hmm, I'm sorry but we don't have a ceaser salad on the menu. How could you not have a ceaser salad? What DO you have? Sorry, all I have is every f-ing thing listed on the 3 page menu you obviously didn't even open before flagging me down like I had ignored you for the last 20 min. Lame! Rant over. Whew! That felt good!

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Shane McCausland April 26, 2016 at 4:22 pm

Your first example of not consolidating, they had manners and were thanking you for service. Excuse them for being easy going on a special occasion. Sorry your job of literally catering to people can be irritating at times, especially when they are being polite, but get over it is my advice.

Your rant about asking for stronger drinks. You should be up front about it and explain the doubling policy. I dont drink much and I could see myself saying something like "make it strong" because I have a high tolerance, and didnt know that you had to specifically request a double for that, which costs more. Basically dont assume shit, maybe they didnt know about how things are ran dealing with liquor.

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jvelgreen April 27, 2016 at 12:45 pm

Please never sit in my section.

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Zombie April 28, 2016 at 1:18 pm

Gotte remember — the customer is there to serve the staff, and don't forget to tip 25%!

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Amber May 6, 2016 at 2:47 pm

You don’t consolidate your requests – Understandably annoying and frustrating but if they are not being douchey about it then big deal, your job is to provide customer service, some people simply can't make up their minds or something runs out while waiting on their next item, it happens and isn't always the customers fault even.

You pretend like you’re 5 years old on your birthday.– if your employer chooses to provide customers with any perks for their birthday, then customers are entitled to enjoy said perks without shitty servers being pricks about it. Customers don't make the rules, your employer does, the perks are their to encourage customer loyalty and entice customers to come celebrate their birthday.

You ask for recommendations and then order what you were going to anyway.– fair enough, but maybe one time the specials will finally entice them to try something new.

You act surprised when your credit card is declined.– Sometimes things do happen outside of the customer's control causing a card to decline for no apparent reason. companies flag suspicious activity and freeze the card, so things do happen, also bank systems go down.

Everything else is certainly understandable points to make.

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Nunya Business January 6, 2017 at 4:55 pm

Yes, all of my thoughts exactly. I've been a server & yes not consolidating is a pain but it's my job to get what they ask & if they're polite, I can deal. I personally hate the whole birthday thing too & every single one of my family members & friends know if they tell the server in one of those type places that its my birthday I will up & walk out. On the other hand, if that's a policy of their's then suck it up. Does it suck? Yes. I guess there are different ways to see the specials thing. I for one steer clear of them. As I said, I was a server & I know a good many restaurants who use up what's going bad as a "special" As for the credit card thing, yes anything can happen. I made a substantial deposit to my account & 2 days later went to fill up with gas only to have the card denied with insufficient funds. Checked with the bank & the fault was with the gas station's machine.

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BOH for 20 November 29, 2016 at 11:21 am

I worked in many different restaurants over the span of twenty years, and I understand how it can be frustrating. I've got more than several stories that are just mind blowing. And while I'm sure the writer's descriptions may have been exaggerated for point, he's the one that comes across as the douche – and then the comments on here to back him up are even more douch-y.
You work in the service industry. If you don't like serving people – all people, and all of their quirks – get out of the service industry. It's kinda an easy equation. If your employer offers a discount for birthdays, and you don't like it – talk to your employer about it, or work somewhere else. Credit cards get declined all the time. It doesn't mean that people are over spending. When you are at a big table, not everyone decides they need a drink at the same time.
It's called service for a reason.
Get over it.

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