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Male-ing A Meal Out Of It

| Working | July 4, 2016

(In this story, I and a friend go on a lunch date to a semi-well-known restaurant in central London. It is clearly our first date, and as we’ve only met once before we’re quite awkward and blushing a lot. Throughout the lunch, nearly the whole wait staff have come to check on us and I’m pretty sure they’re talking about us, but we don’t mind because it’s kind of nice. It’s relevant to mention that I’m FTM transgender, but I don’t pass very well.)

Waiter: *taking our plates* “Would you two like dessert?”

Me: *looks at my friend* Sure, I could do dessert. Could I get a sticky toffee pudding, please?”

Waiter: “With two spoons, right?”

Friend: “Uh, no, I don’t like that. I’ll have the chocolate cake.”

Waiter: *raises his eyebrows but says nothing, going to give our orders*

(We eat and chat, and once we’re both finished we ask for the cheque. The waiter immediately hands it to my friend, and I start to protest that we should pay equally because I don’t like other people paying for me. The waiter is still standing there as we’re talking, making disapproving noises.)

Me: “We’ll pay half-and-half, please.”

Waiter: “Uh, no.” *turns to my friend* “You need to pay for her.”

(At this point both of us are a little stunned, but I wave to get his attention.)

Me: “Hi. I’m a guy, and you don’t tell me or him who is paying for the bill. Fix it so we’re paying separately.”

(He leaves with a sour face, and when he comes back he’s still mumbling about how men should pay for dates.)

Waiter: “Here are your separate bills.” *to my friend* “You should be ashamed of yourself, not paying for her meal.”

(We got out of there pretty quickly, and I left a note by the “tip” part saying “If a customer says they’re male, they’re male. Don’t assume you know better.” He looked pretty surprised to see that when he came to collect our money!)

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