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February 10th, 2006


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03:22 pm - How not to earn a tip:
I just got back from having a late lunch at Red Robin with a couple of coworkers.

The place was fairly busy, and we were seated next to a table with a couple of women and their kids. While we were waiting for our food, the staff came out and wished one of the women a happy 21st birthday.

Sometime within the last six years or so, each family dining establishment drafted its very own birthday chant. Frankly, I think this is a very good idea. First of all, they're less likely to be sued by AOL Time Warner. Mostly, I've never been to a restaurant where the waitstaff had been hired on their ability to carry a tune (though I'd like to check out the Miles Away Café sometime).

Anyway, the waitress came over after the birthday chant was over and was making small talk with the birthday girl.

"So how old is your eldest?" said the waitress.

"He's six."

"So you had him when you were like, fourteen? Fifteen?"

This reminds me of an exchange about the destruction of the planet Earth from The Restaurant at the End of the Universe by Douglas Adams:
"We have a thing on Earth..." began Arthur.

"Had," corrected Zaphod.

"...called tact."
Then again, everything reminds me of something by Douglas Adams. I don't know if the waitress got a tip, but I'm guessing she didn't. Situations like this are great for paying with plastic because you can write a small bit of advice on the tip line. I couldn't tell you how many receipts I've seen that have tips like "don't blow-dry your hair while bathing" or "check up on your customers once in awhile" or (my favorite) "Please apologize to the person who got my bill. This one's cheaper."

In other news, apparently it freaks people out that I eat everything with a knife and fork.
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: John Linnell -- Pennsylvania

(18 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:defaultlisa
Date:February 10th, 2006 09:47 pm (UTC)
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I wonder if that was the same waitress who reportedly "rounded up" my co-worker's lunch to the nearest dollar. She didn't receive a tip.

I have only eaten at Red Robin 2 or 3 times, but I am wondering if these examples of poor service I am hearing from other people are isolated incidents or if they are characteristic of the restaurant.
[User Picture]
From:spidermoon77
Date:February 10th, 2006 09:59 pm (UTC)

It's Isolated

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I eat there rather often, have had super service cept once the waiter (first night) kept getting our drinks mixed up... :) but other than that super :) Even have a running dialog with a couple of the managers due to frequency of visits :D
[User Picture]
From:seanorange
Date:February 10th, 2006 10:31 pm (UTC)
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Maybe it's just your Red Robin?

Come to think of it, I've only ever eaten at one, and it was probably the same one...

~Sean
[User Picture]
From:evil_jim
Date:February 11th, 2006 03:56 am (UTC)
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It might be isolated incidents or just the people at a specific RR. The one I frequent in Monona has always overcompensated when I've had problems (which are few to begin with.) One time in particular I stopped on my way to work. After placing my order & waiting about 15 minutes longer than usual I stopped my server & asked if I could have the bill for my beverage & the fries I ate because I had to leave for work & could wait no longer. He grabbed the manager who grabbed someone in the kitchen who put a rush on my order. Within five minutes I had my food free of chargre (to go) & a handful of coupons totaling enough to cover my next visit.
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 05:01 pm (UTC)
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I've eaten there five to seven times, and have had one other bad experience. We'd phoned in an order from work and somebody went to pick it up. I'd asked that my burger be "really really well done," but it came back so rare that it would have fallen apart if not for the bun. The receipt said "no pink" too, so I'm not sure what happened. Anyway, they made me a new one, gave me a free meal, etc. I tell people about it but they haven't lost my business.

My friends seem to have had inordinately bad experiences at Red Robin. I know other people that love the place and eat there a couple of times a week (to the chagrin, I suppose, of their wallets and arteries). I wouldn't think that they could stay in business if the service was consistently bad. Maybe whomever manages their Madison locations is hiring on looks rather than competence.

Anyway, what on earth were you doing at Red Robin?
[User Picture]
From:seanorange
Date:February 10th, 2006 10:32 pm (UTC)
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What's so unusual about using silverware?

~Sean
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 04:25 pm (UTC)
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I dunno. I guess it's the use of silverware for things like sandwiches. It's actually very messy and a little difficult to do (especially with things like burgers), but it keeps my hands clean.
[User Picture]
From:seanorange
Date:February 11th, 2006 06:15 pm (UTC)
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I wasn't expecting to hear that joke so sp--

Oh damn, my timing's off.

~Sean
From:tmbgfan1234
Date:February 10th, 2006 11:06 pm (UTC)
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Do you have a copy of State Songs, or is Pennsylvania an isolated MP3? I would be your best friend if you could give me a copy (if you have the CD).
[User Picture]
From:xoshua
Date:February 10th, 2006 11:56 pm (UTC)
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i would be freaked out if you didn't use a knife & fork, more likely.
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 05:05 pm (UTC)
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Well thank you for being accepting of my lifestyle.
[User Picture]
From:jinxedkisses
Date:February 11th, 2006 02:09 am (UTC)
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The first time I ever ate at a Red Robins I told the waitress I was having a bad night because I had been stood up. (My friend Paul canceled our dinner via e-mail which I didn't get until the next day) She said she felt really bad for me and gave me my meal for free. I haven't gotten free food since but I've never had a bad time.
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 04:24 pm (UTC)
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I've had one bad experience there. I'd asked for my burger to be "really really well done" ('cuz that's how I always ask for it), and it came back so rare that it would have fallen apart when I picked it up if not for the bun. I thought maybe they'd misheard my order, but the words "no pink" were right on the receipt. Anyway, they made me a new one and I got a gift certificate out of it. I'm not complaining.
[User Picture]
From:nocturne152
Date:February 11th, 2006 02:37 am (UTC)
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Tomato soup would be rather difficult to eat with a knife and fork.
[User Picture]
From:evil_jim
Date:February 11th, 2006 06:54 am (UTC)
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But you could use the knife & fork to balance the bowl up on one edge enough that you could sip soup from the rim.
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 04:18 pm (UTC)
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That's how I do it.
[User Picture]
From:evil_jim
Date:February 11th, 2006 05:26 pm (UTC)
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Or you could just threaten someone with the knife until they give you a straw.
[User Picture]
From:sacredspud
Date:February 11th, 2006 04:18 pm (UTC)
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You have no idea.

Oddly, chicken broth is much easier.
How not to earn a tip: - Garmonbozia for the soul.

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