Wednesday, September 21, 2016


(I've run a little of this before, but most of it is new.)

I was in my car, alone, on a long road trip.  I was getting really hungry but nothing looked great so I stopped at a restaurant that looked just so-so.  I asked myself, “How bad can it be?”  I found out!!

When Sizzler Restaurants first opened, they didn’t have waiters.  You picked up your own food & brought it to your table.  I used to go there fairly often for dinner with the kids if my husband was working late.  Normally, they had no problem in getting our orders correct.  This particular night was another story.  I have 3 children & 2 of their orders were wrong.  I didn’t find out the second was wrong until I returned to the table with the first corrected order, so back I went.  I came back to discover that mine was wrong, too!  I didn’t have either the energy or the patience to make a third trip, so I asked my 8 year old son, who by then had finished his meal, to do it for me.  I waited, in my red pants-suited splendor, for him to return.  When he did, he told me the cook asked him, “Is your mother wearing red?”

Years ago at an IHOP I got into a shouting match/argument with a waitress.  Now I can't remember why, but I do remember that I didn't leave her a tip!!

On one of our early trips to Hawaii, probably around 1968, we went to dinner at Michel’s at the Colony Surf Hotel.  Our friends had told us it was wonderful.  It was quite upscale--& expensive.  It was one of the very few places in Hawaii where men were required to wear a tie.  We got there a few minutes before our reservation time & waited--& waited.  When we were finally seated, we waited to get a menu.  Then we waited to place our orders.  When the food came, the orders were wrong.  There were chiefs all around, but no Indians.  We couldn’t get anyone’s attention.  The maître d’ was making a brief stop at every table.  When he got to ours, he smiled & asked, “How is everything?”  I replied honestly, “Terrible!”  He smiled again, said, “Thank you” & went on to the next table.  Bud & I sat there with our mouths hanging open.  I googled it—it’s still in operation.  I can only assume they've replaced the maître d’, the chef & the waitstaff.

We were at a very upscale restaurant & when we checked in the receptionist asked us if we were celebrating anything.  Bud's reply:  "Only that we can afford to eat here!!"

When we had the beach condo in Port Hueneme, a small group of us used to go out to breakfast on Saturdays.  We were at a diner in Ventura & I ordered chicken (country) fried steak.  I asked that there be no gravy on the plate, just in a small bowl on the side.  (I don't like too much gravy on it.)  When it arrived, it was absolutely smothered in gravy.  I sent it back & when I got it again, the cook had apparently washed off the gravy!!  I didn't eat it but I was afraid to send it back again.

My friend, Barbara, can’t handle food that’s too spicy.  We went out for breakfast to a place where we had eaten before.  Barbara wanted sausage--they offered both link & patty--& she remembered that one was spicier than the other, but she couldn’t remember which.  She asked the waitress the difference between the two sausages.  She was told that the link was long, like a cigar, & the patty was sort of like a hamburger.  Scary—this woman is allowed to drive, vote & reproduce!!  Even scarier—she probably went home & told her family that she’d had some customers who were so stupid that they didn’t know the difference between link & patty sausage.

I had been on a diet for a long time & decided it was time to give myself a treat.  I loved H. Salt fish & chips so I loaded the kids in the car & drove to the local franchise.  The kids got their orders & I was told it would be a few minutes wait for mine.  After ten to fifteen minutes I was called to the counter to pick up my order; two pieces of fish & some french fries.  One of the pieces was stone cold & the other was hot.  I went back to the counter & told the girl what was wrong.  She said she couldn't exchange it because I had taken a bite.  I asked her how I could have known it was cold without taking a bite since I don't normally stick my finger in my food to test for temperature. We argued & I asked to speak to the manager.  I was told he was out & would be back in about twenty minutes.  I waited.  By then, I was too angry to want any fish so I asked him for a refund.  He told the clerk to give me one.  She threw the money at me & asked if I was happy now.  I told her no; that I also wanted the tax.  She threw that at me, too!!  I wrote their parent corporation (Kentucky Fried Chicken) & complained.  They apologized & gave me coupons for lots of KFC.

My suggestion for getting good service at a restaurant; ask for a table by the waiter----fishducky