That being sad, I really hate being 20 years old, living on my own, and going out to restaurants with friends in the same age bracket. Why? Well, let's see. In the past 3 months, I have not gotten good service at any establishment I have chosen. This weekend alone made me lose all faith in eating out, and while I hate to cook...At least I respect myself as both a server and a customer.
Friday Night: Chilis
We requested a table, but were sat at a table in the bar area. That's fine, as long as the service is the same and the waitress doesn't forget about us. Oh, let me laugh. Aha. Ha. Ha. 10 minutes before the waitress comes to our table to take our drink orders. 10 minutes before drinks come. She takes our order when she brings the drinks. Our order is brought out 30 minutes later. We each tried one of the new skewer entrees. I tried barbecue chicken skewers, my friend tried honey lime shrimp.
Total Time in Restaurant: 40 minutes
I start eating my skewers. They're not great, but not gross. I can deal with it, at least I have corn and french fries. My friend begins to eat her rice, and offers a shrimp skewer to me. I take a shrimp, pop it in my mouth. My mouth explodes in successions of pain that one can not even imagine. Ripples of fire roll over my tongue, my eyes water, and my head explodes all over my friend. I chug my diet coke like it's liquid gold, but my mouth doesn't calm down. My friend, too busy eating, pops a shrimp in her mouth. Same reaction, plus a small shriek and choking sounds. Honey. Lime. Shrimp. Spicy? I don't think so. We have to wait another 15 minutes until the waitress returns to check on us. I'm in major need of a refill, friend is starving.
Total Time in Restaurant: 55 minutes
The waitress explains that yes, the shrimp is spicy. Well, thank you so much for telling us after we've already eaten it. That was helpful. Except, no, it's not spicy. It's honey freaking lime, not habanero pepper chili. The menu didn't mention anything about spicy. So you suck, and you suck. Friend orders the steak skewer and waitress says she'll put it right in, it should be out within minutes. I forget to request refills.
Total Time In Restaurant: 1 hour, 5 minutes
The waitress comes back 10 minutes later to see how we're doing. We both want refills. We want them now. We wait 20 minutes. Friend's new meal comes out. It's slightly blackened (she ordered rare), but acceptable. She eats. My cold plate sits in front of me, I stare at her uncomfortably as she eats. Drinks come 10 minutes after friend's food.
Total Time in Restaurant: 1 hour, 45 minutes
The manager comes over to apologize that the shrimp doesn't say "spicy" on the menu. Excuse me, that was not spicy. It was explosive. And there's a reason it doesn't say spicy on the menu. That's because it's not supposed to be spicy, and you're an idiot. Manager offers no compensation. We get the check 20 minutes later. Friend is charged for steak skewers, which are more expensive than the original shrimp skewers she had first ordered. We leave, pissed and too frustrated to say a damn thing. Which is totally not my style, but we just wanted to get the hell out of there.
Total Time in Restaurant: 2 hours, 10 minutes
I'll make a couple of more posts about my experiences in Hard Rock Cafe Orlando and Cheesecake Factory, but this post is a bit long already. Let me just end on this note:
If you think someone is a bad tipper and treat them poorly, you are creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. I may be young, but I tip well...unless I get crappy service. So, in effect, you are damning yourself when you stereotype and assume.
Because everyone knows that to assume makes an ass out of u and me.