We've all done it. Working in a restaurant on Thanksgiving is about as fun as fishing out the bag of giblets from that turkey carcass you bought at the Met Food. What makes it so difficult to be at work on Thanksgiving is that customers have extraordinary expectations for this particular meal. People spend 364 days thinking about what's going to go onto their plate on the fourth Thursday in November. Too often, they are dissatisfied with what they get at a restaurant on Thanksgiving.
If you are going to go out to eat on Thanksgiving, there are some things to keep in mind:
- No, the pumpkin pie does not taste like your great Aunt Fanny's. Your great Aunt Fanny doesn't work here. The pie was made by a man named José.
- Your server is probably not getting holiday pay for being at work on a holiday. He is still getting his $2.13 an hour if he lives in some states. The people who are truly making the bucks for working on Thanksgiving are private cater waiters and NFL players.
- I know you like drumsticks. Everyone likes drumsticks. Your table can't all have drumsticks because each turkey we made unfortunately had only two legs. If you want to eat the turkey that has five legs, you need to eat at the Three Mile Island Nuclear Reactor Diner.
- Our cranberry sauce only looks funny to you because it was made from fresh cranberries and did not slide out of a can.
- Please do not take the newspaper into the restroom with you. You're not at home.
- There is no television that we are going to plug into an extension cord and roll over to your table so you can watch the game.
- Yes, of course you can have seconds. It's just that in a restaurant it's called "ordering something else."
- Your server also thinks your mother-in-law is a bitch.
- When you are finished eating, please do not unbutton your pants and lean back in your chair for a nap. There are other customers waiting for your table.
- Your waiter will be happy to get you some more butter for that fifth roll you are cramming into your face, but please do not be surprised when you see a surcharge for the third, fourth and fifth rolls. An order of rolls consists of two.
- Your server does not want to have anything to do with your camera. He does not want to take the picture nor be in it. Ask someone else to do it.
- Save the familial drama for home. Table 12 does not want to listen to table 11 arguing about what the limit is for the Secret Santa drawing. We all know that nobody wants Grandma to draw their name and nobody cares that your ex-wife still wants to be in the drawing.
- No, you cannot take the centerpiece home.
- When you say grace and give thanks for the bountiful feast you are about to gorge upon, take a moment to also give thanks to everyone who is at work while you are not.
- Please tip 20%. The waiter wants to make sure that giving up his holiday was worth it.
Happy Thanksgiving! (I would be thankful if you shared this.)
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