My friends and I meet once a week to hang out in our local diner. We all work pretty different schedules, so it seems that Tuesday at 8 is the only time/day we can get everyone together. Because of this late time spot we have chosen to go to this spot because it is 24 hours, so we don't feel like we are getting in the way of anyone doing closing duties.
We have been going to this diner at least once a week for the past year and a half. We all order drinks, most of us order food, and we all tip. We know how the diner game works, and we try to play by all of the rules.
We keep to ourselves and except for one small incident about a year ago at one in the morning, we don't bother other customers (and that small incident involved a very drunk man getting offended at something he THOUGHT we said). The staff knows us.
Well this last Tuesday we decide to do our usual. Three other friends and I ended up getting there a little bit early, so we decide to get our table (this has never been a problem before, being sat early). We walk in and are immediatly sat, which was nice.
Once we're sat our server comes by and asks for drink orders: we ended up ordering two colas, a coffee and a water. She brings back the sodas and the coffee and asks us if we'll be ordering food. We explain that we're waiting for other people, and could we please get the water? She apologizes for forgetting the water, and goes off to get it.
Right after that our other three friends show up, and we're sitting waiting for the waitress to come back and we see her seating another table and getting their drink order. Once she brings them their drinks she looks at our table and gets an "ohshit" look, turns tail, then comes back with a small water (usually when someone actually orders a water they bring a large one, but that's not really a big deal.).
When she brings the water she notices that we suddenly grew three new people, so she asks them for drink orders and if they wanted food. The order two more coffees and a soda, and one of my friends gets a cinnamon bun. Both me and one of my other friends from the origional seating group want to get food, but she doesn't even look at us and was actually walking away backwards as she was taking the cinnamon bun order. My friend and I who wanted to order decide we'll just order when she brings the bun out.
She brings the bun and coffees out at the same time, forgetting the soda, so she skips out pretty fast, brings back the soda and again leaves as quick as she comes. The first time (when she came with the bun) I tried to get her attention with an "Excuse me, I wanted to order," but by the time I got to "I wante..." she had dissapeared. When she came with the soda my other friend (J, for all intents and purposes) that wanted to get something to eat tried to get her attention, but again nothing.
So we figured we would wait until she came to bring us refills. We had nowhere to be anytime fast, and we have a reputation of sticking around for a while (so whenever they seat us they put us in back, so we're out of the way. We don't mind, we actually like it that way).
So we wait.
And she never comes back. It's like she was whisked away by some magical diner-god. We waited about 20 minutes, we were all out of drinks, and were getting angry, so J set out to find our waitress. He comes back and lets us know that she's on the phone, just standing there, not taking an order or anything (if she had been taking a to-go order it would have been understandable for being on the phone), but he said it sounded like she was on the phone with a significant other or something, but said she would be over in a minute.
Five minutes later she comes back and we explain that we needed refills and a couple of us wanted food. And she tells us:
"Actually, I'm off in a few minutes and I have other tables to take care of, but once I'm off I'll send someone your way, ok?"
J:"But we just waited like 45 minutes to get you here"
Waitress: "It's been really busy in here tonight, you can't see because you're in the back, but it's really busy."
And with that she walked away.
And if it had been busy, we would have understood. But it wasn't. And her excuse of us not being able to see because we were in the back was total crap, because from where I was seated I could see the front door/waiting area/checkout area, and once we were sat maybe four tables had come in, and the diner was NOT busy when we were sat. Plus there were two other waitresses there.
But once we got a new waitress things were fine. She is actually one of our favorites and remembers us and knows what we like (like my friend who orders burgers but without any veggies, and me who orders pepsi with cherries in it). When we went to leave we all payed with cards, but left our tip in cash and I talked to the manager about why we were so adamant that our tip be given to the correct waitress. I explained our experience and she wasn't really that apologetic, which was very annoying. She isn't the usual Tuesday manager, so next week when we go I'll be talking to the other manager.
(Holy text, Batman, that got long!)
teal dears: Waitress ignores us, forgets us, and blames it on a busy diner that wasn't even busy.