Tales from the waiter: The 5 most annoying restaurant customers

A waiter’s job is never truly done.

There is an old adage that a person’s character can be deduced by observing how they treat the waiter.

Waiters are an integral part of the restaurant industry.

They seat us at tables, they get the menus for us, they take our orders, they serve the food, they clear the tables afterwards. They tend to each and every one of our demands no matter how trivial it is.

However, some people fail to understand that it does not give them the right to treat waiters like their own personal slaves.

Here are the worst customers waiters have to deal with:

• The one with no sense of decency

While it is not mandatory for every customer to mind their Ps and Qs, gestures such as a simple nod of thanks are always appreciated.

Who knew that waiters are humans and not emotionless automatons? By our very nature, humans like to be treated respectfully and as equals. But there are some people who just revel in making other people’s day miserable.

Ask any waiter and they will certainly have a story on how they have been yelled at or insulted for no good reason.

No matter how bad one’s day may be, it does not give the customer the right to vent their anger on the wait staff who are just doing their jobs.

It should also be a constant reminder that it really pays to be nice to the waiter who is often in close contact with the customer’s food.

• The one with excessive custom orders

It’s quite normal in putting in a special request regarding the preparation of one’s food.

It’s alright not to want pickles in the burger; it can be easily omitted by the chef. If the customer wants a healthier alternative of coleslaw instead of fries, that too can be arranged.

However, a problem arises when the special requests begin to pile up to the point the food ordered no longer resembles what it’s supposed to look like.

What exactly is left if a burger is stripped of everything that is not a patty? How much is the restaurant supposed to charge for it? It’s effectively a sandwich by that point!

And of course, it’s not the customer who has to explain their complicated order to the chefs back in the kitchen, but rather, the bewildered waiter.

• The one without parental control

Children can be quite the handful to handle, so it is a challenge when parents decide to bring their kids out for a meal. For the most part, children are actually relatively easy customers, having few questions and even fewer complaints.

The problem comes about when children cannot sit still and decide that the restaurant is a playground to frolic in.

Good parents will wrestle them back into their seats, but it is those that do not that create problems for other diners. In addition to being plain annoying, letting children run about in a busy restaurant is a recipe for disaster.

Imagine the consequences if a child were to run full tilt into a waiter carrying a tray of hot soup or sauce? The physical injuries suffered from the hot liquid will not be pleasant, to say the least.

• The one with chronic indecisiveness

It is actually part of a waiter’s duty to make menu recommendations to customers. Doing so makes the waiter’s life a lot easier as recommending menu items speeds up the ordering process and consequently, helps to get the customer enjoying his meal faster.

However, patience can only last for so long, especially when the restaurant is busy and there are other customers to attend to.

It starts to get a little infuriating when customers still have not made up their minds after 15 minutes of recommendations. The customer may have all the time in the world, but the waiter does not, having many more duties to perform.

• The one with no sense of time

The restaurant is closing and yet, there are still customers comfortably chatting at their table in an empty restaurant.

Somehow, they seem not to notice the army of waiters at the back, all ready to leave for the night but unable to do so without clearing that final table.

The manager might ask the customers to leave, with wildly differing results that range from the customers leaving apologetically or imperiously waving him off.

When the restaurant puts up a closing time on its door, it is not meant for decorative purposes. 24-hour Mamak restaurants exist for a reason.