I had a table tonight that seemed nice enough when they first came in. It was a woman, her brother, their mother, and (I assume) the woman’s young daughter. Like I said, they were nice enough. They ordered their drinks and the woman ordered a salad. I took their drinks to them, put their order in, made the salad, and ran it to them. They were polite and thanked me. They even made an April Fools joke, so I thought, “They might be pretty nice.” I had no idea what was coming next.
When their food came up, I ran it to them. Now usually, if there’s a problem with the food, the table will flag you down right away. No, she waited until I had run their meals to them to complain about the salad.
“There was a hair in my salad.”
I looked at the salad. I saw no hair whatsoever, so I asked point-blank, “Where is it?”
“Oh, I just plucked it out and threw it on the floor.”
I knew she was fucking lying. If I found a suspicious object in my food, I’d leave it there so I could prove to the server that it was in fact there. In an attempt to figure out whose it could have been (but deep down knowing that it most likely wasn’t there in the first place), I asked, “What color was it?” Mind you, I was smiling and being very polite. I was just trying to get the bottom of this. She pointed toward my head and said, “Dark brown.”
Faux pas number one. My hair isn’t dark brown. It’s LIGHT brown, and you can definitely tell a difference. I apologized and told her I wouldn’t charge her for the salad.
A couple of minutes later, I go back to check on them and they say everything’s very good. I apologize once again for the supposed hair in the salad and they say it’s OK, things happen.
I go back a while later to check on them again. Mind you, the older woman had already taken a couple of bites of her meal when I checked the first time. All of the sudden, on this second check, the chicken was undercooked. No, it actually wasn’t. She had ordered dark meat, and dark meat will not be completely white because it’s NOT WHITE MEAT. Nevertheless, I apologized and I offered to take it back. She said, “NO, I’m DONE.” I then said, “Well, may I at least take it back so I can show it to the manager?” Once again, I was being as polite and as friendly as I could be. She sort of scoffed and said, “Well, OK.” I took it back and the manager, A, said to call the owners because he’d hate to have me do something (like giving an unauthorized discount or comp the meal) that could get us in trouble. I called them and explained things and they told me to go ahead and comp it, so I did. I told them that and they thanked me. I apologized once again for the chicken. At this point, she mentioned that the mashed potatoes were cold – something she didn’t mention for the whole two minutes I stood at the table discussing the chicken with her.
They were just about finished and had some leftovers boxed up, so I took them their bill. Even with the comped chicken and salad, it was still about $45.00. My tip? $4.00.
My thought is that they were just another one of those tables who order a lot of food and at some point during the meal, realize it’s going to cost them more than they can really afford, so they make up some stupid complaints to get things for free. Granted, the lady didn’t eat much of the chicken meal, but still, it’s DARK meat, it will NOT be WHITE even when fully COOKED. Go to KFC and see if you get any different – you won’t. And the four dollar tip, even after I was polite and apologetic about everything was just a slap in the face. I took good care of them and I guess they fail to realize that a problem with the food is not necessarily the server’s fault.
Ah well. That’s not the worst table I’ve ever had, and I guess I should be grateful that I even got a tip at all.