The Insane Waiter

Running wild on customers, chefs, owners and managers since 1997. I bring to you, The Insane Waiter. What do bring to your table? A crisp bottle of San Pellegrino ? Perhaps a lovely seared Sashimi Tuna? Start off with a wonderful bottle from Tuscany perhaps? Why I'll be more than happy to bring you your White Zinfandel and Chicken Caesar. No you can't order the mac and cheese off the kids menu and sorry no, we don't serve cheese sticks....

Monday, November 07, 2005

Sorry, Not In My Job Description

So today my boy Rodney comes up to me laughing his ass off.

Here's his story.

Rod had a your basic lunch table, 3 top older ladies, they were finishing up and he offered coffee or dessert.

Needless to say he had a couple takers.

Two hot teas and a cappuchino...

Thing is our expresso machine was by play time.

Rodney,"I'm sorry ma'am our expresso machine is down, can I offer you a coffee?"The lady,"Well I want a cappuchino!"

"I'm sorry ma'am we don't have any..."

The lady submerged deep in the thoughts of her mind."Well isn't there a coffee shop around the corner?"

Unsure Rodney responded,"Yes."The lady motioned toward him,"Well?"

"Aren't you going to go get me one?"Rod was taken aback, he had no response, luckily the lady's friends stepped in before the explosion.

"He isn't going to go get you a cappuchino!"

"Well they're out, he should go get me one, its their fault they don't have any!" She said.

"Well that isn't his job, you can go over and get it."


Same exact thing happened to me a few years back.

White trash four top, as I was asking for drink orders someone ordered a Coke."Is a Pepsi ok, we don't have Coke products sir..."

"Well I want a Coke.""Sorry sir we don't carry it."

A befuddled look was the best he could muster,"Well can't you go to the store and get me some?"

Boy was I pissed.

My response, "No."

"Well its your job to serve me!"

Looking dead in his eyes I said, "I'm not your errand boy, now what do you want to drink..."

Idiots, why do we get the blame, I suppose its the whole shoot the messenger thing.If we serve Coke people get pissed, if we serve Pepsi they get pissed.

Either way it's not my decision.

I don't know how many times someone wants a soda so bad but won't accept the alternative, usually they get a pissed off look and say,"I'll just have water."

Invariably I get a shitty tip when this happens.

Restaurants carry one brand or the other, they have contracts that get very expensive if they carry more than one product.

Too bad they don't have what you want, in this world that happens sometimes,I don't really care that much, if God forbid you have to eat a meal without a Coke, Diet Cherry Dr. Pepper or Caffeine free Slice.

And throwing a hissy fit won't make me care either, and I certainly won't pawn off my tables that might prove profitable just to run to the nearest 7-11 just so you can enjoy your meal that much more.


At 2:39 AM , Blogger waltoncad said...

I would say that your response is perfect, except that you almost certainly wrote off your tip with that comment!! You can get away with stuff like that with 43 year old divorcees every time, but old ladies? Not that they tip very well anyways, stuck in 1948, but damn, I wouldn't mind getting something more!

At 2:45 AM , Blogger Secret said...

eh, response was to the rednecks, the old ladies were my buddies table...

Sometimes you just gotta write a table off. Its the 80/20 rule of business. 20% of your clientle makes you 80% of your money. Work on them and the others can come and go.

At 6:23 AM , Anonymous nate said...

Right on.
I don't think I know any restaurants/bars/clubs that carry both PepsiCo & Coca-Cola products, so what do you these fussy people do elsewhere? They must come across it quite a lot.. makes you wonder, are they like this everywhere, or are they just being awkward because they think they can push you over?

At 11:18 AM , Blogger Marianne said...


For some reason, I really can't stand it when people say that - pet peeve I suppose. I enjoy your blog and your writing's great, but sometimes, spell check is your friend.

At 12:20 PM , Anonymous mike said...

If you want to maintain the pretense of civility, just blame health code regulations: "I'm so sorry sir, but health code regulations won't allow us to serve anything in the restaurant that hasn't been prepared here."

I have no idea whether or not it's true, but they'll never know. And it gives you a way to refuse without refusing.

At 12:57 PM , Blogger Brad #1 said...

I can say that in the 15 years that I've dealt with customers in a restaurant, I've never had this happen to me, but if I have time, I sometimes offer to run next door and get ketchup or honey mustard or ranch, depending on how nice they are to me. It helps to have a good relationship with the place next door for these items, cause the customer really appreciates it, and usually will pad the tip for you.

At 1:04 PM , Blogger Sondra said...

There is one restaurant close to me, in Flint, MI..a little greasy spoon diner (that is also a legend)called Angelo's and they have carried both Coke and Pepsi products since time out of mind. It's the only place I've ever seen it, though. As for me, I'm a Coke drinker. If you don't have Coke, I know you have Pepsi, so I will order Mountain Dew. Simple as that. No big deal. People need to quit pouting over dumb shit.

At 9:10 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We get people that always want Coke products but we carry Pepsi products so they pitch a fitch! I sometimes go as far as telling them that there's an Exxon across the parking lot if they want to walk over and get a Coke! Why do people crawl out from under their rocks to make server's life miserable!

At 10:44 PM , Blogger Sketchy said...

...ever notice that when someone else is bring the soda to them, they'll drink 5 or 6 large glasses with a meal. They certainly wouldn't do that if they had to get their fat arse off the couch and go to the refrigerator to get it themselves! Sometimes it's like "watering" a farm animal.

At 3:00 AM , Anonymous pokervixxen said...

Sometimes I have people that ask if we have Diet 7up or Diet Dr. Pepper, I always ask them, "Can you name a restaurant that does?"

As far as the espresso machine being broken, we always form an alliance before work to say that it is, because our espresso machine is fifty years old and it takes five minutes to make one.

At 9:50 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe she asked that...go get me coffee.

At 10:37 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just an honest question, why do you call him "my Rodney" Are you guys lovers?

At 12:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The bar I frequent has neither Coke nor Pepsi products. It's a company that stocks generic gun soda. Every night, someone will ask for a Jack 'n Coke. Usually, there's never a complaint, until one night an 'undercover' Coca Cola rep came in and asked for a Jack 'n Coke, knowing it wasn't Coke. He threatened to sic the Coca Cola lawyers on the bar for false advertising...

As far as the contracts go, there is BIG money to be made by sticking to one product. The same bar gets paid $5,000 per year to ONLY carry Red Bull as their energy drinks. $10,000 a year to ONLY carry Camel cigarettes. As far as a beer rep trying to buy a tap line, your head would absolutely spin.

At 12:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Coca-Cola are rather keen on protecting their trademark - if they don't hit you with the lawyers, then "Coke" becomes generic. One of the big mast food joints (McD's?) got into a lot of trouble a few years back for not saying "We don't have Coke - is Pepsi OK" or whatever every time a customer ordered a "coke".

I work with a guy who is really picky about Coke - if he orders a Coke, and you silently bring him a Pepsi, he'll notice, and won't be happy.

At 11:47 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can people really tell a difference between Coke and Pepsi? It all tastes awful to me and on ocassions when people have announced that they're treating me or a group to a drink and they show up with a cola, I don't drink it.

I don't work in a restaurant, actually I'm an RN at a level one trauma center, and I've had people ask me to go get them a sandwich or newspaper. Visitors will ask me to feed them too, as if that's some service that's expected. Lucky for me, I don't work for tips and I can present reality without fear of lost income or other repercussions.

At 6:54 PM , Anonymous nandy said...

To anonymous...yes, I can tell the difference bestween bottled Coke and Pepsi (fountain soda can be mixed differently, so I won't try to say I can tell the difference there.)

To my palette, Pepsi is a bit sweeter, and Coke has more carbonation.

At 2:42 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Espresso not expresso

capuccino or yes even cappuccino is correct. NOT with a ch!

At 8:37 PM , Blogger Sondra said...

Coke is better, I love it, and I can usually tell the difference, but I am surely not going to rip my server's head off if he serves Pepsi to me instead. He's just trying to make a buck, man.

Would people quit making comments about spelling errors? I mean, come on. This blog is well written and engaging. The proof is that you're here and have found something to complain about. Was anyone thoroughly confused when he said "expresso" and not "espresso"? One of my most brilliant instructors is a horrible speller. So knock it off and quit being mean.

At 3:54 AM , Blogger "Excuse me, is there... ICE... in this ice water?" said...

Worst request ever:

"My hands are pretty full. Will you be a dear and wipe off my chin for me?"

Yeah, and I'll wipe your ass, too.

The problem is when someone makes a request, such as going to the shop to get them coffee, half the time they're joking, and half the time they aren't, but how the hell are you supposed to know in the age of sarcasm?

At 5:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

sheeple can be such a-holes


At 10:52 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course there is always this old adage:

I would like a sweet tea please
We have unsweetened but there is sugar on the table.
No thank you, I'll have a coke
Is Pepsi alright
Mountain Dew.

Oh the south, how I love thee...

At 8:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Freakin sweet tea. I've had customers do that, ask for sweet tea and after I show them the sugar, oh, well, I'll have a pepsi instead. What's the damn difference?! I will take Coke of Pepsi when I go out, I don't care. If you are that damn picky don't go live in any 3rd world country where you may be lucky to get a drop of generic coke you spoiled bastards!


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