13 Unexpected Stories From Waiters Who Could Write a Book About Their Customers

11 months ago

Working as a waiter is a great opportunity to observe other people. In a restaurant or café, you can witness situations that can become a never-ending source for stories and jokes. And even though it is not always easy to spend all day on your feet and deal with eccentric customers, every waiter has a lot of things to remember, even if they quit this job long time ago.

  • We had a woman who sent a grilled chicken salad back because it was cold. So, we cooked some new chicken and made sure to send it back while still warm. She sent it back again. The entire salad wasn’t hot enough for her. We microwaved her salad. She ate it. I don’t know, man. © Honestnt / Reddit
  • A man ordered tea. And we just got new teapots that were very heavy. I brought him tea, leaned over to the table to put a cup, and spilled it all right on his pants. And he was on the phone at the time. I
    got really scared, quickly gave him some napkins, and hid behind the bar. I stayed there because I thought he’d kill me. And then about 10 minutes later, he came up to the counter. I thought he’d yell at me, but he just laughed and said, “Miss, you should be more careful.” After that, he even ordered a piece of cake and left me a big tip.
  • Once a very thin, middle-aged woman came in. She couldn’t have weighed more than 100 pounds soaking wet. She asked what our biggest steak was. I told her it was the 24 oz. ribeye. She said, “Okay, I’ll have that.”
    Our steaks came with two sides, so I asked which ones she’d like. She said, “I don’t want sides.” I told her they were included in the price, and she still refused them. I bring out her steak and she begins eating. She’s about a third of the way through when I ask, “How is everything?”
    She says, “Great. Bring me another steak.” I say, “Is there anything wrong with that one?” She says, “No, it’s great. I want a second one.” I go back to the chef and tell him, and he couldn’t believe it. But we served her another steak. She ate all 48 ounces of steak and left me a $40 tip. © shadowgnome396 / Reddit
  • I worked in a noodle bar that wasn’t really ever busy, so it was easy to keep your eye on the customers. One weekday afternoon, 2 girls came in and ordered our Asian Pesto Noodles. Once they were seated and taken a few bites of their meal, I watched as one of them pulled out a strand of hair and placed it in her bowl. I carried on with what I was doing, but I saw it.
    After a few minutes she came to my counter and said she’d found a hair in her food so wanted a refund. I said that I’d seen her place the hair in the food and refused. So, she obviously wanted to see my manager.
    Out she comes Manager J to inspect the hair infested dish. Without any prompting from me, she said, “Well, this hair is blonde and as you can see both me and Franki are brunette, and all our chefs are male with short hair, so it hasn’t come from us.” The girl is getting a bit red at this point.
    Manager then picks out said hair and examines it like she’s a CSI agent, and says, “There’s also paint on this hair, and you have paint on your top.” To which the girls simply stuttered something and left, rather red-faced. J then said she hadn’t seen paint on the hair, but she noticed the paint on the art student’s top and thought she’d use it to her advantage. It worked. © Franki Napolitano / Quora
  • I served a lady a Long Island iced tea, and she got mad that the ice was floating on the top instead of the bottom. Sorry ma’am, I’ll just go ahead change the laws of physics and make you a new one. © frostandtheboughs / Reddit
  • I had a couple that told me to wait before I pre-bussed their table, so the man could lick every plate clean first. They had multiple appetizers and entrées between them, and he licked every single one clean before I was allowed to take it. They weren’t in a private booth or anything. The other guests could see this happening. © cannotaccessorize / Reddit
  • Parsley woman. She would order a glass of milk and a large soup bowl full of parsley, and eat it. No salad dressing or anything, just straight parsley. © balljoint / Reddit
  • I worked in a fancy restaurant for a few months. A family came in who looked like decent people. They sent their older kid to the children’s room, and a toddler stayed with them.
    They ordered quite a lot of food, so I hoped for a good tip. But instead, they decided to change their toddler’s diaper right on the table. The smell was terrible, some guests even left. And after that, they left the dirty diaper right on the table.
  • A guy asked me to bring him onions. Onions! So, I brought them to him. Then he asked me for a plate, knife, ketchup, and paper tissues. The customer is always right, so I just brought those to him and stepped aside watching curiously.
    He cut the onions, poured ketchup over them, then added tissues to that, and then said, “Please take this to my wife at that table and thank her for the 5 years of our marriage.” And then he ran away from the café.
  • I work in a fancy restaurant. We have different customers, but my main rule is to never show that I’m flabbergasted. Once a man came in, studied the menu for a long time, and then said, “I want a steak without the steak.” And the steak’s sides are only mushrooms, sauce, and salad. I was shocked, but didn’t show my surprise, wrote everything down and repeated, “Steak without the steak.”
    We did what he asked for, and I brought him his food. The man was happy. It turned out that he was a raw vegan, and it was the first time that he was served without anyone looking at him like he was crazy. He paid the full price of the dish, even though we offered him a discount, thanked me and left me an enormous tip.
  • I was cooking one afternoon, and a waitress came in with an order of a fried egg sandwich with holds. As I proceeded to make it, I checked the order for the special hold, and it was written in bold caps, “Hold mayonnaise! Customer is deathly allergic!” I realize this is an impossible order.
    So I go out and explain the problem of cooking a meal that was made with oil and egg but was deathly allergic to those things. He said that he always made this claim because he hated mayo on sandwiches, but this was the first time a cook or waitress ever caught it. He sent a 20 buck with a note saying, “Thanks for watching out for me!” © William Chambers / Quora
  • My former school classmate came to our restaurant with her husband and looked at me condescendingly when she saw me behind the bar. They examined the menu for a long time choosing something cheaper. And later she posted 300 selfies, saying that they celebrated their anniversary at our restaurant. So, I just laughed at all this. People are so full of prejudice.
  • A couple had dinner at our restaurant. The man left me a good tip and then went to the toilet. After that, the woman called me and demanded to return the tip to her. I just decided to wait for the man to come back, handed him the money and explained what happened.
    The woman got dark red and judging by her glance, was ready to kill me. The man was confused but didn’t take the money back. When they were leaving, the woman muttered, “Spend this money on plastic surgery.”

By the way, there are waiters who are so cool that they could give a masterclass on excellent service.


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These are good stories. I had only heard the one about the tiny woman eating the 48ozs of steak before and these people were pretty good story tellers. If you can't have a laugh at yourself and what's going on around you sometimes, then dark days will lay ahead, lol. Sometimes you just have to take the good with the bad to keep your sense of humor in tact and remain sane amongst the scattering of bad days that will try to trip you up.


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