Under New Mismanagement

| NJ, USA | Working | November 26, 2013

(A local diner has been in business for almost 30 years, but has had a succession of owners and name changes every five or so years. It’s a running joke that it alternates; one owner/group is fabulous, the next one is awful, etc. I have friends in from out of town and, as it’s in a ‘good period,’ take them over. We have been sitting nearly twenty minutes waiting for the waitress to take more than our drink order.)

Me: “Does the steak-burger in the specials come with soup AND a salad, or only one of them?”

Waitress: “Yes.”

Me: “Which one?”

Waitress: “What do you mean?”

Me: “I wanted to know A or B and you said ‘yes.'”

Waitress: “Right. It comes with whatever.”

Me: “I’ll just have the chicken noodle soup with it. Thanks.”

(This procedure repeats for both of my friends. Two of us order soup, and one orders a Caesar salad. When it arrives, another fifteen minutes later, not only do we each have a soup we didn’t order, but the Caesar salad is a pile of iceberg lettuce with no dressing and just a couple of croutons.)

Me: “Can we speak to the manager, please!?”

(ANOTHER ten minutes later, the manager finally arrives. I’ve never seen him before.)

Manager: “Is there a problem here?”

Me: “Yeah. We’ve been here for almost forty-five minutes now. We’ve only gotten our sodas, soup, and salad. Not only were we given the three-bean soup, which NEITHER of us ordered, but that isn’t a Caesar salad.

Manager: “Well, that’s how we make a Caesar, and that is the only soup we have left.”

Friend #1: “What? Dude it’s not even 9:30 yet and you’re ‘out of soup’?”

Manager: “Yep.”

Friend #2: “And, you know, Caesar salad is supposed to be made with Romaine lettuce, with Caesar dressing? It’s in the name!”

Manager: “Like I said, that’s how we do it.”

Me: “Yeah. Do you know if the owners ever come in, or if there’s a way I can contact them?”

Manager: *smiling proudly* “Actually, as of last week I’m the new owner here!”

(I slap my hands on the table and yell out.)

Me: “I SHOULDA KNOWN!”

(All three of us got up to leave. The owner then tried to insist that we pay not only for the soups and salad we didn’t eat, but for the main courses that were ‘almost ready’… AND ALSO WEREN’T THE RIGHT THINGS!)

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