Eat & Drink

10 Lies Every Server Has Told a Customer

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There’s no harm in telling a little white lie on occasion. Most of the time, we use these simple non-truths as a way to make things easier for ourselves. Like when a friend proudly shows up to a party wearing a brand new pleather jumpsuit in leopard print and asks how you like it. It’s a lot easier to say “that looks great on you” than it is to say “my god, tell me who sold that to you so I can hunt them down and throat punch them.” In the world of waiting tables, the little white lie can be a servers’s best friend. Anyone who has waited tables has 100% told an untruth to a customer to either make their own shift a tiny bit easier or make the customer feel important. Behold, these are the top ten lies a server has told a customer:

“Yes, I adjusted the thermostat. You should feel a difference any minute.”

The truth is no server is going to voluntarily make it warmer in the restaurant. They are running around exerting energy and coming out of a kitchen that feels like a sauna in hell. If you’re eating at a restaurant and feel a bit cold, put on a sweater.

“The cappuccino machine is broken.” (Or the blender or the milkshake machine…)

If it’s close to closing time and the server has already cleaned one of these godforsaken machines, this is one of those lies whose sole purpose is to make the server’s life easier. A cappuccino might increase the check by $5.00. If the customer is going to tip 20% on that, it’s an additional dollar. Not worth it.

“You’re right.”

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Customers like to think they are always right when very often, they are completely wrong. When a server uses this lie, it’s only to make the customer feel better about themselves. It doesn’t mean they’re right.

“Yes, this is regular coffee.”

Sometimes, at the end of a shift, it’s easier to have just one pot of coffee left in the restaurant. And it’s probably going to be decaf. Decaf, much like me in college, goes both ways. It’s important that if the server is going to have a pot of “magic coffee,” that it’s decaf because a person who wants regular can drink decaf, but a person who wants decaf can’t necessarily drink regular.

“We are out of mint.”

No bartender in the world wants to make another fucking mojito.

“I’ll pass your suggestion on to the chef.”

The only opinion the chef cares about is their own. If a customer wants to criticize the way something was prepared, do it like a normal person and download Yelp.

“The kitchen lost your ticket” or “The printer got turned off so your order didn’t go in.”

It’s more likely that the server got distracted and forgot to ring in the food. I mean, a customer’s order is very important, but sometimes the bartender is telling a really great story and a server has to really think about priorities.

“I’m sorry I was MIA. I cut my finger. See? Here’s my bandaid.”

Again, maybe the server forgot about the table or they were busy listening to that great story the bartender was telling.

“I’m doing great tonight.”

The kitchen is backed up, there were two call outs, the bar is three people deep, and the host stand has a wait of 45 minutes. The server is NOT doing great tonight.

“That’s my favorite thing on the menu!”

Most servers have not tasted everything on the menu. They subsist on dead french fries, dinner rolls and Red Bull. I once worked someplace that sold a truffle pizza that cost $125. Of course I’d never tried it, but I told every single customer how absolutely amazing it was. And then they would buy it.

Yes, servers occasionally lie to their customers, but turnaround is fair play. Customers lie to their servers all the time:

“I’m a great tipper.”
“I know the owner.”
“I come here all the time.”
“I’m gonna be your easiest customer all night.”
“I know you close in ten minutes, but I’ll eat really fast.”

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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.

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