When I go out and pay others to cook for me and others to wait on me I expect, at a minimum, the kind of table service which reflects good table manners.
It seems of late that people either don’t care about good service or have just accepted it will not happen. Well I would like to say that I do care about good service and have much pride in providing it if I was your server.
So, I expect you are waiting for it….
What pisses me off?
- Not talking to me. At the very least when I enter a premises I would like to be acknowledged. Eye contact and a nod of the head will do. Just please don’t pretend I am not there. I am. I have cash. I will spend it. I will bring friends if you are nice. I pay some of your wages which equals your bills.
- Talking to me, but not asking me if you can help. You have walked to the table. It is a place of table service. You drop a menu in front of me. I know I would like a drink, I love drinks, but you have gone before I can order one. The more drinks I drink, the better equipped you will be to pay your bills.
- Serving our table one plate at a time. The art of sending all meals out together is taught to chefs and wait staff universal. The food is prepared so as it all comes out together. If it cannot be all served together, apologise to the customer and explain. Good table manners prevents me from starting my meal until all food has arrived. If my food has gone cold I will not enjoy it. If I enjoy the meal and the service is awesome. I tip. This will help you pay your bills.
- Removing an empty glass without asking whether I would like another drink. Perhaps I should remind you. I LOVE DRINKS. I might only need more water, regardless, please offer me more. The more drinks I have the more generous I become. This could lead to a bigger tip. You might be able to pay some bigger bills.
- Clearing our plates before everyone at the table has finished. My blood is boiling just thinking about this one.
Do not clear our plates until the last morsel has been devoured. I mean it, the last morsel of food. Don’t guess this. If you are uncertain as to whether the customer is finished, ask them. Those of us who were taught manners will have our knife and fork placed together in the centre of the plate to indicate that we have finished. If you follow this common courtesy I will return to your establishment and bring more friends, spend more money and help you to pay your bills.
- Avoiding bringing the bill. We have eaten. There is nothing left for you to sell us and yet you have disappeared without a trace or are avoiding eye contact again. We require the bill so we can pay you. You guessed it. If we pay our bills you can pay yours.
These six are just the tip of the iceberg. Underneath lies a range of other crappy practices which has turned dining out into eating somewhere. Don’t even get me started on the customers who don’t know which side plate is theirs, whose glass is whose and who pile up their plates in order to help the server. Those topics are for another day when I look at this from the server’s perspective.