"All That And A FREE Bag of Chips…"

We had a large group (20 people, on two tables of 10) the other night, and their servers did an admirable job of taking care of all their demands.  And they were demanding, rearranging every dish on the menu with more substitutions than a hockey game.

When it came time for entrees to be served (we were all shocked they actually ordered some, and didn’t make a meal out of salads and appetizers) the server at one of the tables made the unfortunate mistake of forgetting to order the Veal Chop for one particularly pretentious woman (we had already nicknamed her “Divalicious”);  and of course it was ordered Medium Well.  You got it: 15 minute fire time, at a minimum, to get her another one.  She has refused to accept my server’s apology and her offer of anything else on the menu.  She is now in full-on Righteous Indignation Mode, and basking in the attention she is getting from her table-mates.  She waves her server away, refusing to even speak to her.  So, my number is called, and I had to go over and try to make things right.

I apologized profusely for her server’s honest mistake, and gave her the bad news about how long her Chop would take.  Miss Thang rolls her eyes, big time, and asks to see the menu.  She orders the Trout.  I thank her for her “patience”, tell her it will be on the house, and we get it out and on the table in under 3 minutes.  I go back after a bit, apologize again, and make sure she is happy with her dish.  She is wolfing it down and nods her approval, without even looking up.   She is nowhere near the last person eating when the table is cleared, and her plate is literally licked clean.

When it comes time for the bill (separate checks, of course) my waitress comes over and says that the woman is now refusing to pay for her one drink (which she nursed for the entire 90 minutes they were at the table after sending back her first choice because it “wasn’t pretty enough”) AND she’s refusing to pay the service charge, saying “The Manager said it was on him…”  So, a free entreé wasn’t enough?  Whatever.  I comp out the rest of her check, and my server is just laughing because this woman is being such a ridiculous caricature.

So, as they are leaving, Chef and I are at the podium chatting; and as the group is heading out the door,  I start doing my “Thank yous and Good Nights” to the rest of the party who, truthfully, weren’t all that much trouble after we got past the ordering phase.  Miss Thang stops by, and I was so irritated with her I didn’t even make eye contact.  She reaches into the dish of Jolly Ranchers we have at the podium, and starts fishing through them, searching for the Sour Cherry ones that were apparently the only ones “pretty” enough for her.  She drops one, two, three, four, five of them into her knockoff Louis Vitton bag.  She finally notices me standing there and looks up.  I look her dead in the eyes and say “Haven’t you had enough free stuff for one night?”  Chef bursts out laughing so hard he almost choked.  I spin on my heels and leave her standing there, in mid jaw-drop.

At what point in their lives do these women suddenly become such self-absorbed pains in the ass?  You know that quite possibly they were once very sweet little girls, with pigtails and all that crap.  So, do they just wake up one morning and say to themselves, “Okay.  Time to start acting like a bitch”?  Or is it a long apprenticeship, watching Mom and aunts and sisters put on the Bitch Coat and wear it?  “Don’t worry baby, some day you’ll get to be a bitch too…”  Reality shows on MTV and E Network serve as their training videos; and then they test out their skills on Dad and probably their teachers.  Building on these minor successes, they soon become the full-fledged real deal; and now no one is safe, from cab drivers to store clerks to the counter guy at BK.  Well, check that shit at the door, girlfriend.  I ain’t playin’…

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10 Responses to "All That And A FREE Bag of Chips…"

  1. wyngrrrl says:

    They are women (PEOPLE) who have NEVER had to do anything for themselves. I am appalled. And so happy that you did that, because the customer is not always right and sometimes they need to be told so. Period.

  2. Corey says:

    Several years ago, I attended “A Day for the Queen”, which is a fashion show/fund raiser sponsored by the Queen of the Valley Hospital Association and stars local cancer survivors as the models. Silverado Country Club hosted the event that year and did their usual spectacular work. One woman , who shall remain nameless, had been invited as we had to sit at a table sponsored by (i. e. paid for) by a local philanthropist. Apparently the free meal (and I am sure she had bummed cocktails too somehow) wasn’t enough. As the event neared conclusion, she began to put various leftover breads and Lord knows what else into her purse, with the expected disclaimer that “these will just go to waste”. The final straw was when we rose to depart a few moments early, she grabbed the obviously VERY expensive floral centerpiece to take home. Finally a few attendees and I had had enough. In loud voices we told her that if she had read her program, she would have known that it clearly stated that the centerpieces had been generously donated by a local florist and auctioning them would be the final act of the night. She slinked back to the table, replaced the arrangement and slunk out. I told my group that the next time she was invited that they could just leave me off the list …

  3. skippymom says:

    I love what you said to her.

    She really deserved something to be said.

  4. elsbeth says:

    to be fair… this could have easily been a man 🙂
    and i seem to recall some doozys from your time in Napa

    • nativenapkin says:

      Not true. Women operate under the long-standing chivalrous agreement that no one is going to punch them in the mouth for saying such stuff or acting in such a way. And if anyone does, they are immediately branded as an abuser. Men have no such shield and
      always run the risk of getting their eye dotted…

  5. Matteo Watkins says:

    I had one of those “ladies” in my restaurant one day not too long after our grand opening. This lady was one of the bitches too…but she was a queen. She looked like she’d been dipped in liquid Vegas. The row started when she started kicking off about a short pour on her wine… you know the drill… fashionable red wine glass.. a bit on the large side… you pour a standard pour, which doesn’t “fill” the glass (no shit Sherlock!?).. I was finally called to the table (chef/owner) and tried to make nice… but she was having none of it… loudly complaining and carrying on… motioning demonstratively with her jewel encrusted old claw hands… I offered to show her the amound she was poured with a measuring cup… to which she just continued ranting and insinuating that I was just a cheat… finally having had enough I just loudly asked her if just bringing her a full bottle and a straw would satisfy her… she was of course “outraged” and made if clear to me that the owner would hear of my insolence, to which I replied, he just did. She said she’d never be back. I thanked her for that and let her know that this would likely make us both happy. When she stormed out the rest of the folks on the patio gave me a round of applause… priceless.

    • bobzaguy says:

      I worked a number of years ago with a Vietnamese family helping them with the process of licensing to sell beer and wine. I helped put together a nice reasonable wine list that worked with the dishes they cooked. I also helped train the staff about wine service and such.
      One night, I got a call from one of the owners telling me about a customer who complained that “a glass of wine means a full glass”. He asked me what I would suggest they do about it.
      I thought for a minute and decided to help the customer out and suggested that they bring the bottle to the customer and let him pour as much wine as he liked into his glass during his dinner. Also to explain that the bottle contains 5 5oz glasses of wine, the basis for the glass price charge of $7. At the end of the dinner they would only charge him for as much of the bottle as he drank. The price of the bottle was mid-level, about $30. He drank half the bottle and they charged him $15.00, which he paid. He left happy, feeling that he was fairly treated, and he learned a little about how the restaurant operated.
      This was years before w-b-t-g pricing became standardized as the cost of the bottle per glass.

  6. waiternotes says:

    Awesome! Talk about satisfying. Men have equal but different foibles, but I’ve also been ruminating lately about this ugly strain in some women. I’m dating again and occasionally run into what I call female entitlement. Just because they possess a V. they seem to believe they deserve the world – regardless how sub-par their looks, manners, and intelligence. It’s an off-shoot of what you’re talking about. Your healthy shot of reality is what was needed, though I don’t expect it’ll change her, it definitely improved your night!

  7. showy says:

    A grown woman sends back a drink because it is not pretty enough. Help me Jesus. Thank you thank you thank you for A. being on the waiter’s side (which you always are) B. writing about it and C. telling her to kick rocks. My friend’s daughter is 2 and already pulling little stunts and she’s beside herself. Where does it come from? Thank god I have a son!!

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