Who can forget the scene from "Fletch," when Mr. Underhill gives the server a hard time for taking his plate too soon.
Mr. Underhill: "Does it look like I'm finished?"
Waiter: "I guess not."
Mr. Underhill: "Now, I'm finished."
Waiter: "Whatever you say, Mr. Underhill."
Mr. Underhill: "I imagine you're expecting a nice gratuity, right? Maybe next time!"
Customers have no idea when they are finished eating. Utensils crossing the plate; plates pushed away and arms folded. Even stacking plates on top of eachother, but yet, I go to clear the table and it's,
"I'M NOT DONE! CAN'T YOU SEE THAT?!?"
We need to hire a Third Base Coach for restaurants, so they can signal the servers as to when the customer is done eating, so we can clear the table safely. There have been many occasions when I was snapped at by a customer, and I thought that I was going to be missing some fingers.
I've seen customers, who are chromosomes away from Honey Boo Boo's family tree, practically licking their plates as indication that they are finished. "Them's was some good eats."
Perhaps it's best to go over some simple guidelines to help these people out.
- PLACE your knife and fork in the middle of your plate at the 12 o'clock or 4 o'clock position.
- PLACE your napkin to the left side of your plate.
- DO NOT criss-cross your fork and knife across your plate. Unless you are practicing learning the alphabet.
- DO NOT leave your crumpled napkin on top of your plate. Unless you've just ended a dramatic-in-your-face-yelling break-up with your boyfriend/ girlfriend, then by all means, do that! And add, "I'M OUTTA HERE!" Then storm off.
And a bit of news, The Bitter Bistro will soon be a live podcast. So any servers, bartenders, or anybody in the industry, please email/message/ or smoke signal me to be a panelist on the show to share your most horrific, or unbelievable customer experiences.
Until next time... Server's don't pay their rent with compliments.
"Bitter. Party of one? Your table is ready."
The Bitter Bistro