Tuesday, September 14, 2010

How TO Be A Dick: Restaurant Edition

I was going to begin, as promised below, writing a regular column explaining how not to be a dick. However, when I thought about it carefully, perhaps I had it backward. Maybe, and I have a ton of anecdotal evidence to support this, people want to be dicks. Who am I to tell them they can't? Well, if you ask them, I am a no body and should mind my own f**king business. We all know that is out the question, so I decided to give advice, instead, on how to be a dick. Enjoy.

Ten Easy Steps To Being A Total Dick While Dining Out

1.Please respond to all questions by staff with total non sequiturs. Examples of this include responding to the host/hostess's greeting of “Hi. How are you”, with a number or the word “boof”, and responding to your server's inquiry into your well being with something like “Ice Tea!” or “Bread!”. Bonus points if you can make it through your entire meal without ever responding appropriately to a direct question.

2.Never, ever, for any reason, use a complete sentence when addressing a staff member. This rule builds nicely off of tip #1. Basically, you want to respond to each new question, comment or inquisitive glance with a one word response such as “fine!” or “Steak!”. Advanced diners are capable of not only following this guideline, but of reducing most responses to mere grunts.

3.Once you've mastered the skills listed above, you can graduate to the advanced class of diners by gradually replacing words and grunts with gestures and signs. Signal the host that you've got two people in your party by simply waving something like a peace sign in the air (that's two fingers held aloft for those of you who don't know). Need a new drink? Easy. Just wave your glass in the air like you're having a seizure in your dominant arm until someone notices and fetches your refill. We all know the sign for “check please”, so always be sure to invent some sort of new, unintelligible sign for that so you can progress more easily to step 4.

4.Always, always be annoyed by anything and everything that occurs during the course of your meal. If your well done steak takes more than 3 minutes to prepare, you should immediately begin squirming, sighing, looking at your watch in an exaggerated manner (bonus points if you're not actually wearing a watch) and gesturing wildly for attention. If your food comes out quickly, make a dramatic show out of moving your salad or bread plate out of the way before suspiciously examining your plate for signs of error. Should your server pick up on your annoyance and offer to hold your food for you until you are ready, huffily inform her that you know she will just let your food rot under a heat lamp and that is unacceptable.

5.Eat every single thing you are offered with gusto and joy. Be so enthusiastic about this that whenever a staff member comes near your table to ask how you like everything, your mouth is so full of food that they cannot understand a single word you are saying and must duck to avoid being splattered with your half masticated wild wing zingers. Then, when you've licked your plate clean, proceed to loudly comment to your dining companions that you've tasted better slop in a greyhound bathroom. Since you'll be doing this as soon as your server turns his back, he will turn around and ask again if everything is ok. Tell him it is with an odd smile before finding and cornering the manager on duty and berating them endlessly about how awful the food is. Refuse any form of compensation for this and threaten to never return. Repeat this step with the free desert they bring you.

6.There is never, ever, ever, enough alcohol in your drink! This is easy with froufrou girl candy drinks like strawberry daiquiris because they are specially formulated so you can't really taste the liquor. Don't let this stop you though. Take half a sip, smell your drink dramatically and begin hysterically berating the bartender for trying to rip you off by not putting enough booze in there. Repeat this step over and over until you are sipping straight 151 through a straw. Alternately, order a single malt scotch, down the whole thing rapidly and then proceed to scream that you've been poisoned/given dummy liquor/ it tastes like burning until a manager comes over an offers to comp your drink.

7.Not a drinker? Easy. Simply come up with some bizarre concoction of soft drinks and give it a random name which is only known to you. When you receive a blank stare of confusion from your server, become agitated by their stupidity at not knowing what you are talking about and proceed to explain said drink as slowly and clearly as possible. Visualize explaining the ingredients to the love child of Corky from Life Goes On and Helen Keller. For example: “*sigh* A. Tom. Arnold. Is. One. Third. Coke. One. Third. Lemonade. And. One. Third. Coffee. Creamer. With. Exactly. 7. Ice. Cubes." When the server delivers it, utilize the skills in step 6 to repeatedly send them back and forth from the kitchen.

8.Always treat the staff as though they are nothing but sex objects. It doesn't matter if you're dining at The Four Seasons, Hooters, or IHOP. They are all there for you to flirt with, hit on and fondle. Cute waitress? No problem. Touch her every time she comes to the table, becoming more aggressive each time. Pepper your comments about the food with comments about how much more delicious she would be. Never give this up. If she stops coming to the table and, instead, sends a male coworker, start hitting on him. See a cook you like? Go on and on to your server about how hot he is. Use archaic expressions like “I wouldn't kick him out of bed for eating crackers.” Repeatedly try to get your server to get his number for you. Alternately, hit on your server by showing off how much more wealthy and educated you are. Do this by telling her at every possible moment that she would never have to wait another table again if you could have her. This last one works best if you are wearing a dirty wife beater and have not showered for a month.

9.Tipping is for fools and you know it, but you're going to hold the tip over your server's head for the entire time you are dining. When he greats you, tell him you want a perfect experience but not to worry, you will “take care of him”. If your server forgets something or your food comes out wrong, loudly proclaim “there goes your tip, sweetheart.”. Reference the tip at every single possible moment. Then, when the bill comes, leave nothing. Best. Practical. Joke. Ever.

10. Finally, now that you have made your night out a thrill for all involved, it's time to go home. You're probably pretty full, drunk and worn out by now, but don't forget the final step. Retain your receipt. Why? Because most mid level restaurants have websites where, with a tiny bit of effort, you can send comments to the owner/corporate office and receive free stuff in return. Simply type in the listed URL, log in and begin collecting free food. This is more effective if you have nothing at all positive to say, so simply pretend that your steak took too long, the food was awful, your drink was wrong and the server was cold and you'll be dining on easy street for a very long time to come. Bonus points if you can actually get someone fired or demoted in the process.

Shannon (Who Changes Her Name To HeyYouGirl Every Time She Goes To Work)

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