Matt D From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 9502 posts, RR: 44 Posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 988 times:
This thought came to me this afternoon while I was dining alone in my local North Woods Inn (a small chain of very fine food here in SoCal. Expect to spend anywhere from $20-$40 per person per meal and drinks) this afternoon. This restaraunt is known for its top notch food and service.
When I walked in, and was asked "how many?", and I replied that it was only myself, I was given a strange look (this happens anytime I east out solo at any place other than In-N-Out).
The hostess seated me at a tiny, postage stamp sized table in the corner facing a wall that had a 19th century painting of a semi-nude woman hanging on it.
It was a good 5 or 10 minutes before my server came along and asked me what I wanted.
After she took my order, it was another 5 or 10 minutes before I got my drink.
Then, when it ran dry and I asked her for a refill, again, it was several minutes before she came back.
Finally, when she brought my food out, she did not set it down in front of me on the table like most food servers do.
She stood next to me, holding the plate in front of me and told me to take it!!!!!!!!
Granted the table was small, but there is no reason why she couldn't have served me like they normally do.
It wasn't until I was almost finished (and out of Coke again) that she made her follow up visit. She was just in time for me to ask for my check-which when she brought it-10 minutes later-I walked up to the cashier and paid the bill myself as opposed to directly to her.
I walked out and no gratuity was left.
For a fine dining establishment such as North Woods, that kind of service-or rather the lack of it-was not deserving of any kind of tip as far as I am concerned.
As I drove home, I wondered why I got such dismal service. I have never gotten bad service from them before. I was polite, and spoke very few words other than what I wanted. I sat patiently at my table, and I figured I was being a good customer.
Then it dawned on me:
That place was pretty busy. It was filled with families and couples.
I was the only person in there eating alone. And the last several times I've eaten there, I've had other people with me.
The place was busy-but not THAT busy. They have a proportionately high staff for the size of the place, which is conducive to the good service they are known for.
I was looking around me, and everyone else was being waited on just like I was hoping to be. No one else appeared to be neglected.
So my question to you is:
Did I get crappy service because A) I'm a single guy in a sea of couples and families and seen as an "oddball" or "hermit" that really doesn't deserve good service? Or B) A couple or family is likely to leave a larger tip, or C) both?
This takes us back to the meaning behind the title of this post.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of being single versus being a part of a couple? Why do you feel the way you do?
Here are the advantages IMO to being single:
You can come and go as you please.
Travel without the burden of taking other people with you
No need to worry about anyone paging you or asking where you are going
You can buy a 2 seat sports car and not worry about a car seat
Not having to support a wife/husband/child are an enormous cost savings
You don't have to make your bed or wash the dishes if you dont want to.....
Disadvantages to being single:
Valentines Day, your birthday, and Christmas tend to be pretty lonely and depressing when you are single
You get bad service in restaraunts
Sometimes certain "needs" go unmet for long periods of time...
And so on.
So what is your take on this?
Why are some people happiest when they are alone, while others (like the Japanese for example) cannot function normally unless there are anywhere from 1 to 1000 other people sharing their personal space?
SEVEN_FIFTY7 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 957 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 924 times:
What happened to that girlfriend of yours?
Anyway, I believe it's true that people who walk into a service establishment tend to get neglected by the employees. I think the larger the number of the party they're serving, the more they feel pressured to make an impression upon everyone in that party. This is to garner more tips. Thus, answer "B."
But in that situation you just described, the waitress probably saw you reading your issue of "The National Review." Gee, I hope you examined your food to make sure she didn't spit in it, Matt. From what I hear, most hard-working wait staff despise certain patrons who are flamboyant with a certain political party affiliation. And if you had an issue of "The National Review" with you at the table, she probably figured out what you were.
SEVEN_FIFTY7 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 957 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 917 times:
Oh, I neglected to mention something about your experience, Matt:
I was always taught that if you choose to NOT leave a tip, you should educate the wait person as to *why* you aren't leaving the tip. This way, he/she won't just brush you off as a lousy cheapskate and then spread horrible rumors about you to their co-workers.
And no, I'm not trying to insinuate that you're tacky or anything.
(Someone else might, but I wouldn't.) Actually, EVERYONE would. But I still wouldn't. Even your parents may think you're tacky, but I wouldn't. No, I wouldn't accuse you of being tacky. You just merely sprinted out on that waitress without tipping and without letting her know why, thus giving her no clue as to how much class you *really* have.
Superfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 40298 posts, RR: 74
Reply 6, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 904 times:
Hey Matt D
The North Woods Inn is a great restaurant!
I used to go there to the one on Rosemead Bl. in San Gabrial when I lived in Pasadena.
If I were you, I wouldn't read in to it to much. Some people just don't know how to leave there emotions at home or how to deal with people.
I think the area you live in has a lot to do with it. I hated living in that area because it is so family oriented. If you are single in your 20s, it's pretty depressing. You have to be married with a family to enjoy that part of the greater La area.
I get great service up here in San Francisco wheather I am by myself or with one of my ladies.
XFSUgimpLB41X From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 4273 posts, RR: 36
Reply 7, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 899 times:
I make sure i always have someone with me...90% of the time a female when i go to a restaurant. I guess its that insecurity thing...I don't go to the movies by myself, i dont go to nice restaurants by myself. I am a rather social person though. I am basically always single though...which sucks. My frequency of having dates has gone up quite a bit though which is nice.
DE727UPS From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 814 posts, RR: 12
Reply 8, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 895 times:
Being single is so....unusual.....in most people's eyes. I'm almost 40 and I'm not even looking for a relationship....I think the older you get the more set in your ways you are....and that makes it even less likely you'll feel the need to share your life with someone.
I agree with all the positive points of being single.
As for the negatives: Loneliness....is only a problem if you let it be, I work with kids in my spare time and a have friends through church stuff. Even with all the things I do, though, I do get bored sometimes....Airliners.net is a great way to kill time. Bad Service in resturants.....I agree with this being a problem....I just don't go back to places that treat me wrong. Certain needs? Haven't you heard about how to solve that problem yet? he he.
FlyBoeing From United States of America, joined May 2000, 866 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 889 times:
Valentine's day is coming up. The girl I had a crush on and was moving slowly towards came to college early and found a person who was just like me in every respect. Grr.... I'm just a friend now.
So I guess I'm single. I'm not angry any more. I'm simply waiting in the wings. I wish her new boyfriend no ill will.
Ya know what helps? Going out to do things for the community. Often very good sorts of people head out to the one that I do, which is called COVER and builds roofs for people who can't afford them. Unfortunately, most people my age are relentlessly self-centered. So I'm stuck in limbo with people who are cool but way too mature for me. The other people who are really cool are often too immature. Where are all of the girls?
Oh, wait, I go to Dartmouth College. Unfortunately there simply aren't enough to go around. And tonight is the Winter Ball and I'm sitting here posting.
Oh, well... today three of us built a wheelchair ramp in 20 degree F weather and discussed why the creation of knowledge is morally superior than the extraction of commodities.
Windsong From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 880 times:
Well, I must admit I don't eat out very much at all, alone. I either have a family member, a GF, or the current BF. Your service does sound poor, and uncalled for.
With this "singles" thing... I am in a relationship, but guess what, I AM SINGLE. The only time I won't be single, is if I was married. BF or no BF, I am single. A *weddding ring* ( and I don't want one, thank you) means I am no longer single. Am I the only one who sees it this way? Nothing will ever persuade me to think anything different.
Am I the only one to see the word "single" in this way? Cos guys ask me am I single, and my answer is yes. Even though I have a BF.
Singleness ( as I have described, rocks!) Nothing like that freedom to come and go, and do as you please. I am my own person, I don't need to be joined at the hip with someone else.
I'm all for dating and socializing, but no-one gets to keep me, forever.
Ikarus From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 3524 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 810 times:
MattD, are you sure the waitress is not the same person you met during that Betty Boop Doll story of yours? (Topic: I felt so Smug)
Anyway: Something similar happened to me when I was dining out with my sister, the service was pretty damn close to open hostility (the restaurant in question being an Angus Steak House in London - one of the slightly pricy chains of restaurants) I suppose they don't like young people or single guests - which is unfair, or, maybe in your case, conservatives, for which I don't blame them.
They DID serve elderly couples and families with much enthusiasm, though, which really pissed me off. (The most annoying thing: We wanted to go to the cinema afterwards, but as they were so painfully slow, we were far too late) Actually, I wouldn't have left a tip, had it not been automatically included in the bill (cheeky bastards!)
Anyway: While I feel treating me this way was completely undeserved, I cannot help but laugh at the idea that it happened to you. Who knows, maybe she (your waitress) is now posting a topic about the story on another internet forum, beaming with pride at her achievement of annoying (and humiliating) a lonely conservative......