The Misery Menu

| Germany | Bad Behavior, Employees

(My mum and I just went for a fun run in a city we have never been to. Afterwards we decide to go out for a few drinks, and settle for a ‘beach bar’ on the river. The drinks and snack food menus are hung up all over the bar counter.)

Mum: “I’d like a [French pizza] and…”

Female Bartender: *cutting her off, sighing, and in a sharp voice* “No food.”

Mum: *hesitating* “But… it’s on the menu?”

Female Bartender: *sighing more heavily while rolling her eyes* “Well, yes. But we are out of [French pizza].”

Mum: “So… you still have everything else available?”

Female Bartender: “I guess…”

(My mum finishes her order and then turns to me so I can say what I’d like. Note that there is, weirdly enough, almost no audible music and everyone is keeping fairly quiet.)

Me: “I’d like a Gin ‘n’ Tonic and a Panini.”

Female Bartender: “Well, I didn’t understand a f****** word. Can you speak up or what?”

(Needless to say, we downed our drinks and left. If you are so miserable, why not work somewhere without contact to people?)


Raising The Bar For Bad Management

, | Berlin, Germany | Bosses & Owners, Ignoring & Inattentive, Popular

(I am a waitress, but I sometimes work at the bar if we are short-staffed. My manager is known to be unpleasant and very inconsistent. In this story, I am working at the bar, but have quickly brought an order to the kitchen that my coworker forgot.)

Manager: *upon noticing me being gone from the bar for a few seconds* “Why are you running around!? You’re supposed to be behind the bar! If I see you away from the bar I’ll get you written up.”

Me: “Oh, sorry, I’ll make sure to stay here.”

(About an hour later I have diligently stayed behind the bar.)

Manager: “Why are you behind the bar!? There are tables that have to be cleared; you shouldn’t just stand behind the bar! I’ll have you written up for this!”

Me: “But…”


A Fine Study In Bad Service

| UK | Bigotry, Bosses & Owners, Food & Drink, Popular

(I’m in a group of 20 students on our way to London. We decide to stop at a pub for a quick break. Half of us go to the bar, while the other half shove some tables together. The group at the bar return without drinks.)

Friend: “The barman said the card machine’s having some problems.”

Me: “That’s fine. I’ve got cash.”

(I go to the bar and speak to a barwoman.)

Me: “Could I have a bottle of [Soda], please?”

Barwoman: “Certainly.”

(She goes to fetch it, but the barman pulls her aside for a quiet word. She comes back.)

Barwoman: “I need to see some ID.”

Me: “I’m only drinking [Soda].”

Barwoman: “I need to see it anyway.”

(Since we’re all over 18 anyway, I show her my driving license.)

Me: “Can I get a drink now?”

Barwoman: “The machine’s down.”

Me: “I’ve got cash.”

Barwoman: “Oh, it’s not just the card machine. It’s the whole till.”

(We wait patiently, after a while, I spot them serving an elderly couple down the end of the bar. We go back up, but the barman looks annoyed.)

Barman: “I keep telling you, the till isn’t working.”

Friend #2: “But you just served them.”

Barman: “Oh, that till’s working. Ot’s this one that isn’t.”

Me: “Well, could you serve us on that till?”

Barman: “No, sorry. That one’s gone down as well now.”

(At this point, we realise that they just didn’t want to serve students. We oblige by taking our money elsewhere.)

Putting The A** Into Asthma

| Bad Behavior, Health & Body

(I have been having asthma attacks on and off for over a year, due to exam stress and some other factors, so I am hyper-vigilant about having my asthma inhaler everywhere. This is before the smoking ban came into clubs and pubs in the UK. I start dancing at a party of my friends. I slowly start to have an asthma attack. I am also completely stone-cold sober. As I drag myself out into the fresh, clean, but cold air that can also be dangerous for asthmatics, I wam scraping along the walls and generally not looking very well. As I stumble through between the bouncers:)

Bouncer: *guffawing* “Had a bit too much to drink, luv?”

(After I let the symptoms pass, after about 20 minutes, using a series of techniques learned over the past year, my 5’4”, 17-year-old self has this to say to two huge bouncers:)

Me: “That was a really dangerous thing to do. I was having an asthma attack that, fortunately for you, I know how to control. But it could have been anyone. My father is a diabetic, and if he went into a hypoglycaemic coma, it would initially look as though he was drunk. I would hate to think that the level of your caring just now would have landed my father in hospital, if not dead. I hope next time you see someone in distress, you consider that they might not necessarily be drunk, and might even go and check on them!”

(At least they had the decency to look shame-faced.)

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