10 Reasons Why Your Waiter Is Judging You

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10. You ask for drinks without ice.

Unless you have an awful toothache or other predisposition against cold beverages, a waiter will take this as you being cheap, trying to get more bang for your beverage-buck by leaving the ice out. Oh, you want your cocktail without ice, or with "just a tiny bit of ice?" That's cool, the barkeep will be happy to pour the same six-count of vodka he'd normally pour, top it off with tonic and a lime, and watch you enjoy a tepid, weak-tasting drink. Whatever you like, but gross.

Here's some cold hard truth: Your waiter is judging you. And it's not because you scanned our restaurant's list of preachy, precious dishes made with esoteric (but local!) ingredients and then asked what celeriac or chimicurri are. Waiters don't care about that. Answering questions like that is their job. No, it's not about what you know, it's about how you act, and your waiter is surveying you to determine whether you're a badly behaved diner. How do they know? Presenting the 10 most obvious signs. By Hannah Palmer Egan. Follow her! @FindThatHannah

All illustrations by Kevin Cannon, cartoonist

See also:
5 Drink Orders That Let Everyone Know You're an Asshole
The 10 Worst People in NYC Restaurants

Published on September 16, 2013

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6 comments
kergo1spaceship
kergo1spaceship

Who would EVER care in THE WIDE WIDE WORLD OF SPORTS if he or she is being judged by a server?  Who cares? 

mavery1
mavery1

There really are a few reasons a waiter should care about what you do.  

Some assholery predicts a person will be a poor tipper.  Rude people are usually consistently rude.

Some assholery indicates the pace of the meal the diner  wants - rocket fast to tie up the table forever slow.

And some assholery reduces other diner's enjoyment of their meals, which causes problems (see "tips", above).  There are probably other reasons.  

On the well done steak front, people who ask for well done steaks bitch more than any other customers about their steaks.  Not done enough, too done, want it crispy, and so on.  The poor cow died for our sins, for no reason.


jonfromtjs
jonfromtjs

aren't we done with these lists?  your waiter is judging you for how you order, and his auto mechanic is judging him for his stupid car questions, and the automechanics doctor is judging him for his...


we're humans. we're all judging. watching and judging.

Peacock214
Peacock214

I was a server for 11 years, and this list misses the mark. We don't care what you order, whether or not you want ice, or whether or not you're considerate of your dining companion.

ThreeOranges
ThreeOranges

Why would you, as a waiter, care if I'm on my phone or not? You don't know my relationship with whoever I'm eating with. Maybe we're both phone junkies. It has no effect on you, unless you just hate phones.

jonfromtjs
jonfromtjs

oh, except for the well done steak. that one's true. and should be :)


PS Eastern medicine suggests ice in water is bad for you.  latin americans believe it gives you stomach cancer.  you body has to work really hard to turn ice water into your normal body temperature, supposedly heating you up as much as the ice cools you down.  And i've never met a waiter that cares either way.  Usually they just assume the customer is chilly.

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