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....

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Asinine Question of the Day, Pt. 2

The "guest"

"I'd like to have the Shrimp Scampi with vegetables."


"I'm sorry, we don't offer Shrimp Scampi on our menu."

The "guest"

"Well are you sure???"

No I'm not sure, I only work here.

Variations are "guests" asking for half sandwiches and soup, sweet tea, raspberry tea and variations of entrees from chain restaurants they've seen on TV.

When said request is politely denied...

"Well are you sure???"

Is the requisite response.


At 2:06 AM , Blogger Cricket said...

"Well are you sure?" sounds like an improvement over my customers, whose standard response seems to be "But I come here all the time [and I always get that/they always do it for me/you've always had it]!" Some folks can't come in and order without telling you everything you know about your menu is wrong, even though you had to study the damned thing for weeks before you could wait tables or even take phone orders and even though you've been there every flippin' day for years and could recite the menu in detail in your sleep...

At 9:56 AM , Blogger steph said...

I'd say.. "Hmmm... let me check.... " Stand still.. "No!"

Haven't read your posts in awhile.. what did you think of the movie- 'Waiting' ?

At 2:33 PM , Blogger Tai said...

"Gosh, whaddaya mean you know what you serve and what you don't serve!?!"

p.s. Are you sure you don't have any scampi???

At 10:53 AM , Anonymous Eustacia Vye said...

Hate that. My experience...

"Do y'all have Zima?"
"No, ma'am, I'm sorry, we don't."
"Well... Could you check? I'm sure I've gotten it here before..."

Fine. Trottrottrot to bar, zima? no zima, smirnoff ice. Trottrottrot to the table.

"I'm sorry, we don't carry Zima. We do have Smirnoff ice, however."
"Oh, yes, that's what I was thinking of! I'll take one of those!"

And so, trottrottrot back to the bar to fetch her damn drink.

Mind you, this is on a busy night.

Correct response to such an exchange... "We don't have x" "Oh, you don't? Could you recommend anything that's similar?" (if you have your heart set on a dish) or "Oh, okay, I'll need another minute to decide then." I'm not gonna stand a the table and stare while you ponder the menu just because you made up an entree that doesn't exist.

At 1:48 PM , Anonymous Anon #6 said...

So, eustacia, you're pissed because you didn't remember that you don't have Zima?

And then, you aren't professional enough to say, "I'm sorry we don't have that, but I would recommend this other pisswater candy alcohol drink instead."

So, somehow, a customer who is confused is at fault, but the waitron who doesn't know his/her own product, and can't be buggered to be helpful, is somehow smelling like roses?


At 1:32 PM , Anonymous Eustacia Vye said...

I did remember that we didn't have Zima. I told her as much. I don't know where you got the impression that I didn't. When she asked "Are you sure?" I double-checked to make her happy.

At 11:36 PM , Blogger Sondra said...

Right, eustacia, which is what customer service, GOOD customer service is all about. You did exactly what I would have done.

By the way, I watched Waiting a couple of weeks ago and laughed my fucking ass off. I covered my eyes when they did all that gross stuff to that lady's food, though. Ewwww!

At 9:04 AM , Anonymous Anon #6 said...

I dunno, I just a better version would've been something like:

Poor Taste Customer: "Do you have Zima?"

Waitron: "Nay, lassie, we have no such drink in this fine establishment."

PTC: "Really, I thought you did, I'm sure I've gotten it here before."

W: “Forsooth! And I confirm for ye again that we have no such beverage!”

PTC: “”

W: “But, as I can see you have a taste for high-alcohol sugar candy nasty ass drinks, let me recommend this other failed sugar water malt beverage from another fine purveyor, known in these lands as ‘Smirnoff Ice’.”

PTC: “That’s what I meant. And why do you talk like that?”

I mean, what it comes down to, is that as the waitron, you are in charge. You know your product, you know enough about other products to make a substitution suggestion, so take charge! Don't let these sugar candy malt beverage drinkers rule you.

At 10:06 PM , Anonymous Eustacia Vye said...

Anon6: You're right, I should have made the suggestion. This actually occurred after I'd only been serving for a couple months and wasn't really familiar with our alcohol selection. It also didn't help that at this point, I never drank (only wine at holidays) and wasn't completely certain what Zima was (I knew it was a sort of beer-type-drink, but not that it was comparable to Smirnoff Ice), except that I knew we didn't carry it.

And your post made me chuckle.

At 7:39 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

eustacia, you must be an outstanding server! You just kissed anon#6's ass, even though he's a fucking dickwad. Hey anon#6, I bet she spit in your food.

At 11:01 AM , Blogger Sondra said...



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