You know those people who call you over to the table and just by the way they get your attention, you know they are about to complain about something? It’s always the same way. First they tilt their head up and thrust the chin forward as they raise their arm halfway up and hold out their index finger like a number one. Do that for me, and see if you recognize it. Okay, now the expression: lips pursed, sides of mouth pointing down, nose crinkled and brow furrowed. This is the body language for “Waiter, I have something to complain about.” It also happens to be the body language for “I am releasing a fart that I hope does not turn into a shart” but in a restaurant it usually indicates they are about to whine about something.
This was the case with table 16. The woman called me over and said, “We hate to be those people, but…” and then she carried on with her complaint. Sorry, lady, but just by saying you “hate to be those people” makes you one of those people. They had a whole list of complaints which made me wonder how they get through life at all. The first thing she took issue with was her Caesar salad which, according to her, wasn’t dressed at all. “I’m sorry, that’s weird that they made a Caesar and didn’t put any dressing on it.” I picked it up and saw dressing on it. What she meant to say was it didn’t have enough dressing to suit her taste, but whatever. “I can get you some more dressing, ” I said emphasising the word “more” to alert her that it was in fact dressed. Then it was the husbands turn. “And my fried chicken is way too salty. Like, it’s ridiculously salty. Too salty to eat, just too too salty.” I think what he was trying to tell me was that his chicken was too salty, what do you think? Now I had served this very same batch of fried chicken six or seven times already and not one person thought it was anything but delicious. Looking down at his plate, I saw he had only eaten a piece of the crust. Of course that tasted saltier than if had he taken a bite of actual chicken. The crust had salt in it and it’s meant to be eaten along with the chicken, not just by itself. Everybody knows that. Who the hell bases their decision on the taste of fried chicken without even tasting the chicken part? Before I could offer a suggestion, he went on. “And the quinoa is ice cold.” My first thought was “that’s what you get for ordering nasty ass quinoa” but my second thought was “there is no way in hell it’s ice cold, asshole.” The quinoa never sees the inside of a refrigerator. It’s kept on the stove top and warmed up in a skillet per order. “Ice cold” is certainly an exaggeration that was meant to elicit a response from me which he did not get. He ordered something else other than chicken because he “simply can’t eat that, it’s too salty” and I took it along with the quinoa popsicle and the dry as a bone Caesar salad back to the kitchen.
Of course the chef stuck his (impeccably clean) finger into the quinoa to test the temperature. It was not ice cold as he had reported. He must have been confusing the temperature of the quinoa with that of his frigid uptight wife sitting across from him. The chef reheated the quiona in the skillet, added more dressing to the Caesar and started the tilapia the man wanted instead of the chicken that tasted like it had spent the night on a salt lick.
After they received their food to their satisfaction they seemed happy enough. Or at least as happy as they were going to get. I mean, he was stuck with an ice queen of a bitch for a wife and she was stuck with a dumb fuck of a husband who didn’t know how to eat fried chicken. Sad, this couple. They finished their meal along with a bottle of wine. I assumed they both needed to get a buzz on before they left. It was going to help them with all the imperfections they came across as they walked home: “that tree is leaning at a 75° angle and not at the correct 90°, this sidewalk has too many cracks in it, the wind is blowing, that car did not come to a complete stop at the stop sign…”
Complainers get on my nerves. I’m more than happy to fix something that is wrong, but please don’t make everything out to be such a big fucking deal. It’s one meal. If we live to be 75 years old and have three meals a day, we will have a total of 82,125 before we die. Chill out. (But by “chill out” I don’t mean “ice cold” because that would be an exaggeration.)
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