Last night I had the “pleasure” of waiting on a table of 8: granddad, grandma, aunts, husband, wife, all relatives. The husband & wife brought in their two screaming children ages 2-5. So they’re loud, their kids are loud, they are rude from the start, and they ignore me whenever I ask basic questions. Annnnnnnd they were encouraging them to yell and letting them run around through the galley where hot plates of food are sent out.
Beyond letting their spawn run wild, they fail to answer me or acknowledge me, or even look at me when I retrieve many of the items they asked for. I bring over some items to keep the kids satisfied, and the wife asks to have her kid’s food comped because she doesn’t like it. All some of my biggest pet peeves as a waitress, but I try to not let it get to me.
Fast forward 30 minutes, The wife bursts into tears and one of the aunts starts yelling across the table “I can’t believe you! You’re OUTTA LINE!” Frozen holding a food tray, I wonder if I should continue serving pasta while the yelling happens. The grandma tugs on my arm and assures me it’s not me, and not to worry about it. It continues.. “FINE, whatever, Susan. You are RIDICULOUS!” “Yeah? Am I? AM I?”
Every other table in the room is starting to fall silent. Next thing I know, a full on Talladega Nights-style family fight with tears and name calling has begun; the wife runs out of the restaurant in tears and the ancient grandpa looks like he is praying for death after his relatives’ lack of manners. “I’m so sorry about my horrible sister in law,” one of them says. “Uhh. It’s okay.” I say, not really sure what is going on anymore. The wife has fled outside crying to the place where we take our smoke breaks, and our other employees are starting to get confused.
But they don’t leave. They stay, for quite awhile, and continue to argue. I wait til they finally flag me down and I go to hand them their check – and yes, they are still arguing. “I already added the gratuity!” I remind them, as I hand the slip to the aunt. “Yeah, okay” they say as they sort of blow me off again.But the story has a happy ending. Hundred dollar check AFTER gratuity. They tipped me about 20 on top of that because they were too busy fighting.