The Mutant Kind…

, , , , | Right | February 14, 2019

(I work in a deli.)

Customer: “What kind of ham is turkey?”

Apparently, Appearances Are Everything

, , , , , , | Working | February 13, 2019

(I only eat strictly kosher food; this means that the only establishments I can eat at are kosher-certified. There are only a handful in the city and none are near my work. I am out for dinner with my coworkers at a non-kosher restaurant. Typically when this happens I bring my own meal in a bag and eat with them. I’ve been doing this for six years at many different restaurants, from small Somali joints to huge steakhouse franchises, and have never had an issue until now. There are eight of us at a burger/wings joint and I’m halfway through a deli sandwich when a manager comes up to me.)

Manager: “I’m really sorry, but we don’t allow any outside food here. We are a restaurant.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t eat any of your food due to dietary restrictions.”

Manager: “We can try to accommodate your restrictions, but you are absolutely not allowed to have outside food. We usually have security stop people at the door.”

Me: “Are you a kosher-certified establishment?” *knowing they aren’t*

Manager: “I think we have some kosher food in the kitchen. I’ll go look.”

(I know this is impossible but he leaves before I can say anything. Throughout this my friends have been trying to argue with him asking why this is a big deal, as we’re here with a big group, and he has refused to move. I wait with my half-finished sandwich in my lap like a rebuked boy in school while my friends continue to eat. He comes back fifteen minutes later with another manager in tow.)

Manager #2: “Well, we don’t have kosher food in our kitchen, but you’re not allowed to eat outside food.”

(I’m ready to crawl under the table from embarrassment; I just wanted to sit with my friends and this has turned into a whole ordeal.)

Me: “What do you want me to do, exactly?”

Manager #2: “Well, we really don’t want anyone looking at you and thinking they can bring their own food. Can you eat your food off our plates?”

Me: “No, I’m sorry. The plates aren’t kosher.”

(They pause for thinking, while my friends continue to try to convince them to let it slide.)

Manager #2: “If we put a lining on top of the plate, could you eat it, then?”

Me: *not willing to argue any further* “Yes, I could.”

(I’d actually much rather prefer not to do this, as making it look like you’re eating non-kosher food is a no-no. But I just want this experience to end at this point. Another five minutes pass and they bring me a plate with a French fry liner on top of it. I put my sandwich and container of farfel — a Mediterranean dish — on it. Five minutes later the manager comes back AGAIN.)

Manager #2: “I’m sorry, but could you just empty your container out onto the plate? We really don’t want anyone thinking you’re eating outside food.”

(It was incredibly obvious to everyone at the table that this establishment served nothing like the food I was eating. Farfel is a bit messy, and all I had on me was a plastic fork since I’d assumed I’d be eating out of the container. I bit the bullet and dumped it out, and for the rest of the meal I held my container in my lap like it was contraband. The funny thing is that my company, which has 400 people, had come to this establishment in the past for a company event. We pretty much agreed that we would talk to the admin team to make sure that never happened again.)

This Is Spring Rolling Down Hill

, , , , , , | Related | February 9, 2019

(My father, over the years, has taken the eating habits of a pig. I mean the like of always having some food fall on his shirt, making it a race by pushing one bite down by taking the next, open mouth, loud noises so you can actually hear him chew, slurp, smack, and all from one end to the other of the house, and so on. It’s useless to ask him to stop; he says he doesn’t hear anything or just doesn’t know how and that it’s no big deal. It drives me crazy and makes me sick. This one time took the cake. We are having Vietnamese spring rolls for dinner in a build-your-own way; all the ingredients are on the table and you just take what you want. Some items are sticky and have a spoon to serve yourself with, while others you can use your hand as long as you take what you touch. As usual, my father decides the rules don’t apply to him, so he goes in without using the spoon. He can’t just wipe the sticky sauce on a napkin or go wash in the sink. Instead, he proceeds to stick each finger in his mouth, one at a time, all the way to the base, and suck it clean, with the usual noises. Then, with his hand all wet with saliva, he moves to reach into the next dish like nothing happened. Totally grossed out, I stop him.)

Me: “Dad! No!”

Dad: “What?”

Me: “No, you just covered your fingers in saliva; don’t put it back in our common food. Go wash it first.”

Dad: “Hmpf. If you insist.”

(He does wash, but he decides to be as loud as he can since he did not like me calling him out. Since he eats super fast, he’s done first. The problem is, he has to throw his napkin and some bits that fell on him from the meal in the trash can, which is behind him. So, here we are, and he — unnecessarily — bends all the way in half, placing his butt right at the table level, almost leaning on the table, and… yes, he farts. A big, long, stinky one. On the table. Again, grossed out, I call him out on it.)

Me: “Dad! Come on! Farting at the table is bad enough, but farting on the table is disgusting and totally excessive.”

Dad: “Oh, I did? I didn’t notice.”

(He never even attempted to say sorry.)

Gluten Out Of Ten For Ignorance, Part 5

, , , , , | Right | February 8, 2019

(I work in a popular chain restaurant known for its 100% clean food policy; basically, we don’t use artificial ingredients in our products. We even have a list of ingredients that aren’t allowed to be offered hanging up by our cash registers so customers can see. It’s that slow period just after the lunch rush, and a middle-aged woman walks up to my register.)

Customer: “Do you have gluten-free bread?”

Me: “No, I’m sorry, ma’am, but we do have a few other gluten-free options. Do you have an allergy to gluten, or do you avoid it by personal preference?”

Customer: *turning red and puffing her chest* “I wouldn’t call it a personal preference to avoid putting toxic chemicals into my body! I shouldn’t’ve expected you to have gluten-free bread; all you people put poison in your food to make money!”

Me: “We actually don’t use any artificial ingredients; we even have a list of banned ingredients right here.”

Customer: “Then your bread is gluten-free?”

Me: “Gluten is a naturally occurring substance that exists in wheat. Our breads do not contain artificial ingredients, but they do contain gluten, because gluten is a natural part of certain types of grain.”

Customer: “No! You have to add the gluten; it’s a poisonous toxin and you people are killing everyone to make a buck! And don’t you tell me you ‘don’t use artificial ingredients’! You have to or else you’d be losing money!”

Me: “I’m sorry if you don’t believe me, but our restaurant took a pledge to never use artificial ingredients in its food. The only thing we serve with artificial ingredients is our fountain soda, which is not made by us. Gluten is not an artificial ingredient. Would you like me to tell you which menu items are gluten-free?”

Customer: *still in a huff* “Fine.”

Me: *listing off the menu items, as well as modifications that can be made* “I even have a book here with a list of ingredients if you would like to double-check for yourself, and I will alert my manager that you are ordering so our team will prepare your meal with extra care.”

Customer: “So… none of your sandwiches are gluten-free?”

Me: “Well, we can put the meat and cheese and everything in a dish or on a bed of lettuce. [Meats we serve] are gluten-free.”

Customer: “But I want bread. And it has to be gluten-free. Gluten will kill you, you know!”

Me: “We don’t serve gluten-free bread.”

Customer: “Why the h*** not? Can’t you just make the dough but not add the gluten?! I can’t believe you people add toxic chemicals to your food and lie about it!”

Me: *exasperated* “Pardon me. I’m going to get my manager.”

(She didn’t order anything, and when she left, she was screaming at all our customers that we put poison in our bread. My manager got her picture off the security cameras and forwarded it to the security office of the mall we are located in. I hope she never comes back!)

Related:
Gluten Out Of Ten For Ignorance, Part 4
Gluten Out Of Ten For Ignorance, Part 3
Gluten Out Of Ten For Ignorance, Part 2

You Say Tomato, I Say Vanilla

, , , , | Right | February 6, 2019

Patron: “Is this tomato? I’m allergic.”

Me: “No.”

Patron: “How can you be so sure?!”

Me: “We don’t serve tomato with ice cream.”

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