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Off the Menu A server's nightmare: Diners who show up at closing time

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Jordan Guinn

Posted: Wednesday, December 22, 2010 12:00 am | Updated: 9:48 am, Wed Dec 22, 2010.

It was 8:58 p.m. on a Sunday night. We closed in two minutes. I had class at American River Community College early the following morning and wanted to go home and sleep. As I cleared off the bistro's tables and watched the seconds tick away, my worst nightmare came true: A couple of customers entered the restaurant seconds before the doors locked.

As they pored over the menu, I politely answered questions and held out a glimmer of hope that they would order something with a quick cooking time like soups or salad. Instead, they opted for a ribeye steak cooked medium-well and the mushroom risotto. After slowly savoring slabs of rubberized beef and time-consuming risotto, the affluent and oblivious couple lingered over their creme brulee dessert and swirled wine in their glasses.

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1 comment:

  • Hannah Kemalyan posted at 11:54 am on Wed, Dec 29, 2010.

    Hannah Kemalyan Posts: 12

    These are fantastic! Haha! I firmly believe that the worlds population could be decisively divided into two categories: Those who have served in the industry and those who have not. Those who have not will never understand such quandaries. While never EXACTLY complicit in a crop dusting, late shift fatigue and frustration have motivated more than a few less-than-shining moments, such as the ol' bag 'em tag 'em, wherein the hostess or busboy brings out the meal packaged for takeout, feigning surprise when the customer indicates wanting to eat IN. This little scene concludes with effusive apologies from the server, offers to plate and heat, comp a couple of drinks, etc etc, and in all the hustle and fussle, the befuddled patron exits,meal and extra sides in hand, never the wiser. That one,as underhanded as it may be be, I'm (sort of) ashamed to admit, has worked more times than The Sandman will ever tell you.



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