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Lets me start by saying ” I am probably going to insult a lot of people!” with this post and I do not apologize for that. I call ‘em as I see ‘em and in the case of restaurants – I seen a lot! So here goes…
Has anyone read about the Applebee’s waitress who posted a credit card receipt on Redditt? I read a few versions of the story on different news media but I liked the one posted on Daily Kos the best. In a nutshell…a pastor comes into an Applebee’s Restaurant (sounds like the beginning of a joke…right?) with at least 8 people and is pissed off that the waitress has the nerve to get an automatic 18% tip (that is generated by the computer when the server types in the amount of people at a table). She leaves a nasty remark on the receipt to show her distaste. The person who took the receipt, copied it and posted it online, is not the waitress that had to serve this group (she should get a purple heart). The waitress in question just did something I and countless other servers would have done if we had access to social media. But back when I was waiting tables there was no social media so we would have had to entertain ourselves by passing around that receipt and making fun of the customer in - house. But enough about me for now… let me get back to the story.
Everything seemed to be going along just fine until the online story, along with the pastors signature — got back to the pastor. Being the servant of God that she is (the pastor is a she) threw a fit that everyone and their mother now knows she is petty and cheap! She wasn’t embarrassed by her nasty remark left on the receipt, but was instead embarrassed that she was ratted out… by a common waitress! She called the restaurant and demanded that everyone be fired… talk about a ‘holier than thou’ attitude! So being a corporate restaurant they had to appease the cheap bitch, and fired the waitress who put the receipt online.
Did anyone else notice the bills total? $34.93???? For at least 8 people! That comes out to less than $5 per person. I would like to know how long this group tied up her tables when she could have had real customers that came to eat an actual meal. It looks to me like alot of coffee and maybe a few desserts.
If you ask me, It’s about time these customers (I use that term loosely) be exposed for the pain-in-the-cheap-asses they are. I wasn’t as fortunate as the staff in Applebee’s to have the automatic 18% gratuity policy. Restaurants are not required to do so. I have waited on countless groups of people, in my 20 years in the restaurant business, who left less than 5% and ran my ass off the entire time they are there. Servers are charged an automatic 11% on every single customer receipt, even if they are stiffed. Most of the time I was tipped at least 15% and a few times over that amount…so it sort of balanced out in the end…but there were a few times it wasn’t worth leaving my house to go to work.
There are certain groups of people who refuse to tip or under-tip and their meal ended up costing me money! The worst group by far are CONSERVATIVE RELIGIOUS groups…fresh from church! I hated working Sunday afternoons because our restaurant would be packed with them. They aren’t only cheap, but they are whiny and obnoxious. They literally believe they are God’s gift! Oh and let me not forget…they cannot order from the menu, they each have to create their own meal…even though the menu states NO SUBSTITUTIONS. Apparently this was only a suggestion at the restaurant I worked at because the manager always sided with the customer and gave them what they wanted.
Most restaurants assign servers at least 6 tables at a time which can hold at least 4 to 6 people each. Most can accommodate large groups by moving tables and chairs around, so its conceivable that all of a sudden a server can have one huge group to contend with… which if its a group of religious people (and they will let you know by asking if you know Jesus, and my response always was “No can you point him out for me?”) chances are good that table will cost that server money.
One of the restaurants I worked at allowed separate checks. I don’t know which is worse; going to each person taking their order and then presenting 20 separate checks to the cook who has vowed to kill me after his shift for clogging up his order wheel…remember this is a restaurant with at least 4 other servers turning in their orders that need to come out in a timely fashion; or watching the person in charge of the group try to collect enough money to even cover the bill. People amaze me when they think no one will notice if they throw in $5 to cover their $12 meal, and religious people are the worst!
If I had a nickel for every “Jesus Loves You” tract I got as a tip instead of money I would own my own restaurant. I clearly remember this one woman coming up to me after the group was leaving and told me how what a wonderful waitress I was as she pressed a crisp bill into my hand. I looked later to see it was a one dollar bill. She made such a scene about it, I was sure it had to be at least a ten!
Another time, I worked at a diner in San Francisco and once again it was Sunday, but it was nighttime and I thought church services would be long over but boy was I wrong. Within five minutes the diner went from nearly empty – to full capacity. This was an entire group that called themselves Born Again Gypsies…I’m not making this up! They were in town for some sort of small convention at a hotel down the road. They were “true believers” who follow the teaching of Christ…except, apparently when it comes to paying their bills. I never saw so much passing around order tickets in order to confuse the staff about who was paying for who and what bill belonged to whom. Forget about even asking if there was a tip… I was surprised no one pulled the old “there’s a hair in my food” routine.
The next group of cheap customers are women…OK – lesbians. Sorry but its true. We would fight over a table with a group of Queens (they are awesome tippers and funny!!!) but gay women…they are cheap, cheap, cheap. The good thing though is, they eat fast and don’t tie up the table for long. I don’t want other groups to feel left out so I will add; wealthy housewives and foreigners and I don’t mean the band.
Now that I have trashed and probably pissed off some people I will tell you my favorite type of customer. They usually come in after the bars close and they are drunk off their asses. I don’t know what it is but drunk men in particular, love to give away money. The down side is there is a strong chance they will throw their meal back up all over the table. There was this one guy who did just that and then passed out, but we were so busy the bus boy cleaned up the mess as best he could and then laid his head in an empty bus pan. Too bad camera phones and YouTube were not around back then!
This pastor should be happy it wasn’t me and my crew of servers; we would have posted that receipt on every social media we could think of and then deny, deny, deny. Too bad the crew at that particular Applebee’s doesn’t know the code of servers everywhere, “it’s us against them!” We would have never ratted each other out. Like the time a male server, named Angus kissed a male customer who decided to give his server named, Dave a hard time, thinking he was gay (this is the same diner in San Francisco where chances are good the entire staff is gay)… so Dave complained to Angus about his customer’s behavior…so Angus went over to the table and planted a juicy kiss – right on the customers lips and announced. “I’m gay!” Which led to a fight like the ones in old western movies…which ended up outside, with the customer on the ground and the staff kicking him…which led to the customer calling the SFPD and complaining he was kissed by a waiter and kicked by the staff in the parking lot. Two hours later the SFPD showed up and the male customer demanded we all be arrested, so we stuck together and denied, denied, denied.
Ever see the movie. “Waiting”??? Hopefully that pastor has and if not she should because if she ever returns to that Applebee’s…
And I just found a website that this pastor might really get upset about, Lousy Tippers.com If I was the one who got fired over her, you can bet I would add her name to that list. She better pray the staff at that Applebee’s doesn’t know about it. You know what they say…Karma’s a Bitch!