Kenneth Avery is a Southern humorist with well over a thousand fans. The charm and wit in his writing span a nearly a decade.
Let's Get Something Straight
this piece is not about your back room, dark, smoke filled, sexy music blaring, scantily-clad women dancing on a stage, and being served by a waitress or waiter that you really don't know if your order is right or not. Not that I want to come down on anyone, but it's harpened to me. Possibly you too. It's not a crime to be screwed at a sleazy, low-atmosphere restaurant that looks good on the outside, but you get shocked when you enter. This is about the down home, friendly named "Papa's Jim and Jenny's" or such, but the restaurant owners didn't take the time to completely screen the waitresses.
And you can pretty well guess who gets to pay for this blunder. You and I, that's who. Face it. Someone has to allow a shifty waitress or waiter alter a food order or price and pocket the change, plus a hefty tip that you are almost brow-beat to leave. Sound familiar?
It's now or later for the Dining Nation of the U.S.A. This tag is easy to understand. If you eat-out, you are a diner. I'm a diner. Wouldn't ya' like to be diner too? (Couldn't resist). No. We have do something about diners mostly getting had when it comes to restaurants who get conned themselves, because it's the shifty waitresses/waiter who are as stong and crafty as any member of "Henry Gondorff," and "Johnny Hooker." The Sting. Oh, yes.
It Starts Outside The Restaurant
probably in a secret dark meeting house, maybe a movie theater, and talk in verbal sounds and code to let fellow sharp waiters and waitresses which restaurant to "hit" and those to now fool with. The waitress, now geared-up to get on the inside of this posh restaurant is dressed nice, not gaudy or sleazy, but modest in skirt length and no cleavage showing whatsoever. These chicks have done their homework.
Because their system works, because it has been going strong since the early 1960's, Rebel! ! Rebel! Rebel! No reference to Shelley Fabares "Johnny Angel," in 1962. I have found that tossing in a bit of nostalgic rock music can relax my readers who are reading this piece. Because the fact is that it is time to reveal the many ways you, the diners, can be sly as a fox, and not be taken when you and your loved ones hit the street for some good grub.
- When you take the entire family out to eat, counting heads is wise. Example: counting yourself, the wife, and three kids, not teenagers, you sit down to eat and try to keep a civil tongue about the three toddlers. Waitress all but runs to your table. This is a dead giv-away. She is out to get your loyalty no matter if she gets injured on the job. Food is ordered. You and the wife's beverage is refilled frequently. Another way to win your loyaty. Food is now brought to the table. You and the family chow-down. Check time. The waitress waits for your credit card and uh, oh! The bill is more than you dreamed and you have been a C.P.A. for 22 years. But she explains that before the meals were ordered, the confusion of you and the wife talking and reaching the toddlers to get their attention, must have caused the food orders to be odered and now it's too late. One thing you do not need is an angry manager, cook, and waitress all cocked to make the scene of scenes, but you swallow. Hand the waitress your credit card. She makes-off with $35.00 in tip and $5.00 above price of the entire food. See how easy it is to be took?
- Another business person, she is the female president of a huge corporation. She takes her office staff out ot lunch to celebrate her promotion. Enter a clever MALE waiter. Quite frankly a female waitress to wait on an all-female crowd is just asking for problems. The waiter casually compliments very sincerely about how pretty the women and their dresses look. Great! The seed is planted. Orders are taken. Waiter refills ice tea, coffee, wine, and water glasses very promptly and throws a wink at the assistant office manager. Yep. She is being played like a Big Mouth Bass. Bill Dance would be proud When the food arrives on time, the crowd looks happy. As the waiter walks away, he begins to hear the chatter of the females who are so jealous of the one woman getting a wink and how one woman's dress looks better . . .blah! Blah! Blah! Waiter returns. Then finds the bill is huge. He acts overwhelmed. How did this happen? he gasps. This is the first week on this job, and weeps softly. Game over. Waiter walks away with a $50.00 dip and $120,00 above the original bill. See how easy that was?
- Now an easier one: the old "Food Mix-up Gag." A couple in love are seated in a sly, well-groomed waitress. The two are in her cross-hairs. She is very sweet and understanding and complimentary. All great tools to be used. Food arrives. The couple look into each other's eyes and take bites of their orders, or do they? Waitress gives these two enough time to let he waitress' hook set. She walks up and gasps, what is this, sir? He is slighly-embarrassed. She quietly explains why the bill is so big. She tells the couple that she did not understand the food items and of course the prices also. Now the waitress claims that she is a single-mom working three jobs and that is it. Bingo! Waitress takes most of the male's money for the huge tip and overcharged bill. PS: the guy saved back this money to buy his fiance a nice birthday gift. The lesson: sympathy has no place when you are working a great restaurant con.
- An Oldie, but a Goodie is when the expert-lying, overly-dramatic waitress takes it to this rich-looking businessman. Very short explanation. She takes the order and is nice from the word "go." She brings the food, he smiles, and she starts to walk away. Then she screams to high Heaven, collapses on the floor and says that the businessman made an inappropriate gesture toward her and she is hurt deeply. Businessman, out of fear, gives her $500.00 cash for a tip and another $500.00 for the one cheeseburger and coffee meal order. He walks away quickly and she heads to the ladies' room and counts her money while smiling because another one bites the dust
But Hey, We All Know That
all of these three cons are not true and will network, so I sternly-advise you to not be foolish and try them. Thanks, Kenneth.
P.S. in my 67 years of many times eating-out with my wife and family, yes, I have encountered a few rude Male waiters and Female watiresses, which I apologized and gave a big tip. If eating out is on your schedule this week, be alert, relax, and be sure to look over the bill twice. Even go over the meal order with the waitress listening. Then all you are obligated to know is enjoying you meal, paying the bill and leaving a moderately-sized tip.
Should you retaliate when you, the customer, has been bilked? No. Of course not.
For $15.00, the price of a meal? Is it really worth it?
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© 2021 Kenneth Avery