Eat & DrinkWorkers Rights

COVID Has Changed Some Customers For the Worse

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Restaurant customers sure have changed over the last few months. When outdoor dining first became the new normal and restaurants could serve indoors at lower capacity levels, diners slowly ventured back out into the world, eager to eat a meal they didn’t prepare themselves and have it served by someone who would clean up after them. “Thank you so much for reopening,” they purred. “We really appreciate you being here,” they said with tears of gratitude welling up in their eyes. The tips to their servers were bountiful; customers and servers were living in a mutual admiration society as one party fed the pocketbook and the other party fed literal food and they each fed the other’s soul.

Fast-forward a few months: the coronavirus is still on a rampage, unemployment numbers continue to be dismal, and low-grade depression is almost as common as the common cold. The initial warmth that customers had for their servers has worn off and now they are quick to complain about almost anything. After growing angry with the stagnation of their lives it’s a lot easier to take out one’s frustration on a server than it is on an invisible virus that is stealing your social life out from under you.

Case in point is an Arizona man who last week berated his IHOP server in a viral video after she was so “rude” to ask that his son wear a mask. The man was also upset that the appetizers came out of the kitchen at the same time as his entrees.

This video may trigger you but people need to see how awful this man was. Poor waitress got treated in a way no one should be treated!! Unacceptable in so many ways. He then tried to apologize for his behavior quote "I'm usually not like this, I had a bad day." Still doesn't give him an excuse to treat the waitress and Manager at IHOP or any other place. Before lashing out on someone for your own personal life, feelings, ect think about how the other person is going feel. Also this waitress was the only server with 5 tables. Not showing any attitude whatsoever like the guy claimed. Happened August 19, 2020 at night.

Posted by Layla Morelos on Thursday, August 20, 2020

Internet sleuths have determined the man is named Adam Veronica Huerta, owner of Viking Car Wash in Tucson, Arizona. After a video of his outburst went viral and his business’s Facebook page was swamped with one-star reviews, he was quick to do damage control, first in a rambling 22-minute non-apologetic apology video and again later in a 3-minute video that had a smidgeon more of regret.

“I’m not gonna sit here and say I’m perfect, but I am definitely not the person this video is making me out out be,” he said, as if the words “shut the fuck up, bitch. Get the fuck out of my face” can truly mean anything else no mater how out of context it is taken. Isn’t it possible that three months ago Mr. Huerta would have been grateful enough for his mozzarella sticks and Mega Monster Cheeseburger that he might have been a little bit more kind to his server?

Two weeks ago, three women were arrested, accused of assaulting a 17-year-old hostess at Chili’s after they were told their large party couldn’t be seated together due to social distancing. No one knows how these women would have behaved before the lockdown or directly after the ease of restrictions, but all we know for sure is that five months into the era of COVID, they definitely did not appreciate their chance to fill up on baby back ribs.

Customers have changed. They seem to have forgotten that going out to eat is a privilege and it’s even more of a privilege when there’s a pandemic raging across the planet. Masks, longer wait times, fewer menu options, and higher prices are all a direct result of the coronavirus and the server is not responsible for any of those changes. It would be nice if customers could think back to three months ago when just stepping out of their house or apartment was a huge deal and stepping into a restaurant was an even bigger treat. Stop taking out your anger on restaurant staff. They are some of the people in this country who are trying to provide a respite from self-isolation and cooking your own meals. Everyone wants life to be the way that it once was and servers just want to hear an occasional thank-you again.

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Bitchy Waiter

Bitchy Waiter

Darron Cardosa is a writer, actor, singer, and waiter. He lives and and works in New York City and enjoys "The Brady Bunch," "The Facts of Life" and cocktails almost as much as he hates your baby.