Social Question

ibstubro's avatar

Do you have a 'restaurant rule' that's outside of current conventions, but you strongly feel should be SOP?

Asked by ibstubro (18765points) February 24th, 2015

Standard Operating Procedure

My rule is there should be two napkins. One for my silverware to rest on and one in my lap.

I do not want my silverware resting on the bare table.
Yuck.
The table rag likely wiped anything from the floor to baby vomit before it wiped my table.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

68 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Two napkins sounds like a great idea! If one is cloth, I’d like the second one to be paper.

I don’t want to keep dirty flatware inbetween courses. I don’t mind using my same fork if the entree is brought out before the salad or appetizer plate is removed, but I don’t want to have to lean my used fork on a napkin or God knows what else. I hate that. If you remove my plate, take the flatware with it and bring me a new fork. I can’t even believe I am listing this as outside if common convention, but it is lacking in so many moderate restaurants.

I’d really like a way to clean my hands after I order my food. Like in Japan. The dirtiest, germyist things in a restaurant are the menus and sides of chairs. Gross. Simple wetnaps at not so fancy places would be great.

funkdaddy's avatar

I wish it was standard to just bring a check after the entrees arrive and just leave it on the edge of the table. No explanation needed. There’s too many situations where people need to leave sooner than the whole “to go boxes, dessert, coffee, anything else?” process that comes with eating out.

I completely understand why waitstaff hold out, because people are offended and feel like you’re trying to push them out when you drop a check. But it’s so easy to just pick it back up and bring a new one if something needs to be added. When I waited tables, I always dropped the check right after food for lunch service if someone was obviously coming from work, because people are on a clock, and it was a big hit. During dinner or for those who weren’t headed back to work, it was taken as me saying I was done with them, or that they needed to leave. So you end up trying to guess at someone’s situation. It works “ok”, but I know there’s few things more frustrating than waiting too long on your check.

As someone with a kid I can basically hear the clock running out on her good behavior it would be handy. As someone with a big group of people who all need to leave at different times it would be handy. As someone who’s just in a hurry it would be handy.

Really the only downside is that people who want to stay around take it as offensive so we’re left with a guessing game with no real standard.

Unbroken's avatar

I like the wet naps and the two napkin idea as well as the flatware. I used to always put my utensils on my plate and then later be short or have to request more.

The check issue is too.

I usually tell the wait staff when they bring the food that I’m in a hurry and as soon as they get a chance could they drop off the check and a box. But that is after many times of trying to wave them down or me eyeing the the clock.

Also I think with the boxes of food there should be a bag with napkins and utensils. I travel so sometimes I’m stuck trying to find some in a gas station or airport. Frustrating. Also I love eating my ethnic food with chopsticks. And while I have sets at home I don’t normally travel with them and somehow I feel robbed when I have to finish a plate of pad thai or something with a fork. I try to remember to ask but the opportunity is rare enough I often forget.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@funkdaddy what about the added work of constantly updating the bill? I can understand doing this as soon as dessert/coffee has been served or even after the mains are served if the people indicated they won’t want a dessert but surely it would add work for the wait staff otherwise? I don’t really understand the benefit of doing this. It doesn’t take so long to prepare the bill does it? Most places have a computerised system over here.

I think it would depend whether on the type of establishment too. I’ve never worked in a restaurant so perhaps it isn’t an additional task busy waitstaff have to remember.

Unbroken's avatar

Oh also I think every restaurant should have one gluten and dairy free or (top ten allergen free) item on the menu. That way almost every person can go with a group to any restaurant and at least have the option of eating.

funkdaddy's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit – You’re ringing any new orders into the same system that updates the bill and that ultimately prints the checks, so it’s one extra button to print a new check. I just got in the habit of doing it every time so I’d have them.

If I just needed to swap out the “old” check presenter for the updated bill each time I dropped something new off, we’d be all set. I’m already going to the computer, I’m already going back to the table with whatever they ordered, the only addition is swapping the check.

It can still be a judgement call. The romantic dinner for two is a lot more likely to order dessert than the family of four in at 6:30, but as it stands now there’s the chance of being considered rude for dropping a check too early, even silently. So people are left scanning the room for their waiter, the only person that can tender their release without incident ;)

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

It would be an administrative nightmare, but I’d love it if menus came with dietary information. The fat/carb/protein/calorie content and specifics of what the meal contains. It would help people to make more conscious decisions in relation to their diets. If it isn’t on the menu, at least have it on their website so people can check out what they want to eat before they get there if they have specific dietary needs.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Thanks for the explanation @funkdaddy. I’m thinking back to my recent meals in restaurants and the wait staff seemed so busy. They were efficient and helpful but busy.

JLeslie's avatar

Chain restaurants in America have to have nutritional information available. I think the requirements are for restaurants with 20 or more locations.

As far as the bill, when it comes to lunch time rush I think it’s fine to bring the check out right away if it’s a sandwich type place, or even the moderate chains. Higher end I would wait until the check is asked for as dictated by restaurant etiquette. Same with dinner time, the check should be asked for unless it’s a place like a Denny’s or Perkins, or if the patron said they are in a hurry. When I tell a waiter I am in a hurry I want all my food as fast as possible and the check as soon as possible. They can run my credit card while I’m still eating.

Some restaurants now have iPads to order and to pay. You can use it at your whim. The only thing I don’t like is they are probably full if germs like menus. Maybe worse.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Buffets are unsanitary and should be banned. People reaching for food at a buffet drop skin, hair, and just general dirt into the food.

ANd then there’s the problem with buffet food not being at a safe temperature and being dangerous to eat.

Ban buffets.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@JLeslie, I don’t think of chain establishments as restaurants. Macdonalds, Hungry Jacks and similar provide nutritional information here too. Not sure about places like Sizzler and the like. I don’t eat in those places. Quality restaurants don’t have nutritional information on their menus, but I wish they did or at least put it on their websites. Even if the information was only indicative since they are usually à la carte.

ucme's avatar

Erm…no, no I don’t.

canidmajor's avatar

I don’t, either.

It is a very very rare circumstance when one is forced to go to a restaurant. I recognize that there may not be other options if/when one travels, and some others, but the vast majority of restaurant visits are about convenience or recreation, and should be governed by the good sense of the patron. If you feel that the restaurant is unclean, or has too much unhealthy food, don’t go.

By “convenience” I mean any time you don’t feel you have the time to cook, the kids are hungry, someone came in from out-of-town and you didn’t have time to clean your house for a guest, etc. I have had all of those circumstances, and I still count them as convenience, as there are alternatives.

Darth_Algar's avatar

I always ask for extra napkins when I order my food, so that’s not really a big issue. As for something I feel should be standard – kid-free zones.

ucme's avatar

Extra napkins, not really big tissues.

keobooks's avatar

@Darth_Algar—As a parent, I wish there were kid free zones too. I hate when I pay good money for a babysitter and a nice restaurant and then there are rowdy kids there. I paid money to get AWAY from the kids. Kids take away from the experience.

Also, even though my daughter is well behaved for a 4 year old, she’s still 4. Even at her best, she probably annoys other patrons. We try not to take her out but we’ve had to. If there was a kid free zone, then the kids would be corralled up together and the parents wouldn’t have to feel so self conscious because everyone else has kids in the area too,.

JLeslie's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit You are naming mostly fast food. What about Cheesecake Factory, J. Alexanders, PF Changs, Brio, the list goes on. I’m not sure if they all have their nutrition available, I know there was a grace period for chains to get up to speed. NYC has required calorie count for a long time now for chains, but the federal government passed a law fairly recently for the country that is more comprehensive than just calories.

Haleth's avatar

@Unbroken “I usually tell the wait staff when they bring the food that I’m in a hurry and as soon as they get a chance could they drop off the check and a box. But that is after many times of trying to wave them down or me eyeing the the clock.”

That is genius! When waiting tables, you learn to read people pretty quickly. But there are always customers who get huffy and resentful because you didn’t bring the check soon enough or late enough. I wish people would just say something about their timeframe at the beginning of the meal.

A lot of more considerate touches (like bringing silverware with every course, wet naps, or hot towels) aren’t standard at chain/family restaurants because they’re making money on volume. Basically they need to serve as many meals as quickly as possible to be profitable. They literally are trying to push you out of there. Having lots of nice complimentary add-ons, and creating more work for the waitstaff, doesn’t do anything for their bottom line and it slows them down. But nicer, independent restaurants pull out all the stops to make sure you come back.

I’ve stopped eating at chain restaurants. They use the cheapest ingredients possible and load it up with fat and salt so it will taste better. I always feel gross and bloated after eating a meal like that. There’s nothing they serve that I couldn’t make at home. And chains have a busy, stressed-out environment, with harassed waiters and screaming kids. Instead, I’m saving up my money for a special meal once every couple months. I’d rather give my money to a passionate local restauranteur than some corporate chain. That’s probably not feasible for, like, families with kids, but it’s worthwhile to me.

The one exception is Nando’s Peri Peri, I love that place and everything about it. Their flame-grilled chicken is actually grilled over flames, and their menu is full of fresh vegetables. You order at the counter and they bring you the food, so you can have a relaxing meal and also leave whenever. And their wine menu is really sensible! It’s all bargain-priced wines from Portugal and South Africa, two places where the cheapest wines are really good. It’s cheap, I can’t make it at home, and it’s a world apart from places like TGI Fridays.

Anyway, the big corporate chain restaurants are doing one thing right. Some of them have a little touchscreen menu screen that sits on the table. You can order from it and use it to pay with a credit card at the end of the meal. That streamlines the process so much, it’s awesome, and every place should have one.

Silence04's avatar

Honestly, higher standards for food.

Ever since I moved away from Chicago, I’ve had a hard time finding restaurants that I can enjoy on a regular basis.

It’s like the majority of line cooks/chefs outside of big competitive cities just lack passion. Sure there are a handful of great restaurants in every town, but in smaller cities that great restaurant experience usually comes with a much higher price tag and a fancy attire requirement (who asked for that crap?!).

I just want good food put in front of me. Food that was carefully thought about, prepared, and presented. Not something that was prepackaged by a food distributor and an entry level cook slaps together on a plate.

wildpotato's avatar

No more tipping; either fair wages for staff or a fixed percentage charged for service instead.

JLeslie's avatar

I was just in Chili’s and the table was set with two forks and a knife wrapped in a napkin and a few extra napkins in the center of the table.

That took care of the napkin situation and the clean fork situation.

elbanditoroso's avatar

@JLeslie – and in my area, the Chilis all have those self-pay devices on the table as well.

JLeslie's avatar

I paid at the table.

If they had the thingies to clean my hands I’d be all set at Chilis.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@JLeslie, we don’t have those chains but with the exception of when I might get a coffee while we’re out shopping, I rarely (if ever) go to chain establishments. If I’m going out to eat, I’d rather go to an independent restaurant or cafe. Even if it’s just for lunch, there are usually nice cafes that serve food and good coffee or tea. For dinner, I’d always go to a fine dining restaurant rather than a chain.

JLeslie's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit I like local also, but when traveling on the highways I prefer a chain I know is reliable and consistent. Some of our chains are quite good.

Unbroken's avatar

Good point @Haleth I won’t argue with you there.

longgone's avatar

I’d love buzzers at the table. I would also like to get a waiter’s pad left at the table with the menu. That way, I could just write down what I want. The process of ordering seems so ill-efficient. That may be my misanthropic side talking, I guess. ~

JLeslie's avatar

@longgone If written down they have to deal with interpreting messy handwriting. Not everyone writes as clearly as you.

Some restaurants you can order on the iPad in the table. Some chains here and also at tables in some airports.

longgone's avatar

@JLeslie You’re right. An iPad as an alternative would a great idea, then!

ibstubro's avatar

I’m glad, at least, that my two-napkin idea was popular. I’ve started a local revolution among people I know personally. It’s really disgusting to think that the first thing you do is unwrap your napkin, put it in your lap, and place your silverware on the bare table surface.

I recently noted at a local restaurant that the bus person had a plastic tub (like an ice cream tub) with a rag in it at the bus station. Of course they’re very diligent about wiping the chairs as well as the table tops.

Shudder.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro Couldn’t you simply put your knife and fork on your plate instead? Surely you don’t put the napkin in your lap while waiting for the meal to arrive.

ibstubro's avatar

What very odd notions you have, @dappled_leaves.

So, if I start my meal with a cup of soup, I should upend my soup spoon, 2 forks, a knife and possibly a teaspoon into my soup cup? Wouldn’t that be messy, not to mention unhandy to eat?

I don’t put silverware to my dish unless I dirty it. If I have a side salad, fettuccine Alfredo and cup of ice cream for dessert, why would I want my knife in my way while I eat, and what would be the purpose of my ice cream spoon laying in the Alfredo sauce?

It is a mental to chuckle at! Everyone grabbing their handful of silverware off of each dish as the courses change. Or maybe we could just lay them on our napkin…in our lap.
LOL

funkdaddy's avatar

In our homes most people set that same silverware into a drawer that is rarely cleaned and after any amount of time consider it pristine when it comes out.

Yet you’re worried about a table top that’s wiped down with sanitizer dozens of time a day.

Odd notions indeed.

ibstubro's avatar

Sanitizer? @funkdaddy

“I recently noted at a local restaurant that the bus person had a plastic tub (like an ice cream tub) with a rag in it at the bus station. Of course they’re very diligent about wiping the chairs as well as the table tops.”

Unsure how you can equate my closed kitchen drawer with a public restaurant’s table top and seats?

funkdaddy's avatar

That ice cream tub is probably a sanitizer bucket… it’s required by health departments and you’re severely knocked without it, so they most likely had one and it’s exactly like you describe. There’s rules as to where it can live, so “at the bus station” sounds perfect.

It has a solution in it, like bleach, but not, that sanitizes tables and other surfaces.

Throw “sanitizer bucket” in google and there’s a whole array of fine sanitizer specific buckets for you to choose from.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro Hmm, the restaurants you frequent seem to be heaping piles of flatware atop your napkin! I don’t recall seeing more than a fork and/or a knife on a napkin, perhaps a spoon – if there are any on the napkin at all. Frequently, the table is set with all or most of the flatware already on the tablecloth.

ibstubro's avatar

This is it, @funkdaddy. ½ full of murky liquid.

So, @dappled_leaves, if your napkin is set with a fork, knife and spoon, and you order a salad, you immediately place the utensils in the salad when it arrives?

dappled_leaves's avatar

Oh, @ibstubro – I never order the salad.

ibstubro's avatar

So, @dappled_leaves, if your napkin is set with a fork, knife and spoon, you immediately place the utensils on the entree when it arrives?

dappled_leaves's avatar

I lift the utensils to get to the napkin, put the napkin in my lap and put the utensils to use. But also, I am not terribly serious about the procedure.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@ibstubro, I have to say I’ve never been worried about my cutlery being placed on the table. In most restaurants there is a tablecloth or at least a disposable paper covering. It used to be popular here to put a white paper covering over the table in some places. Can’t remember seeing that for a while. Even if there wasn’t a tablecloth, I wouldn’t be worried about the germs. I figure I must pick up germs every time I touch pretty much anything.

Unbroken's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit Exactly, why bother washing your hands at all. Or for that matter the cutlery. ;)

I’m with @ibstubro on this matter. Often we don’t have place mats or any type of table linens at all. And while I may not clean out the flatware drawer that regularly it does get washed. When something get spilled in it. Or crumbs. Or when on a cleaning or rearranging spree I periodically experience. Besides my germs I am inoculated to. Someone else’s not so much.

canidmajor's avatar

Why do you guys go back to a restaurant that you think is so contaminated that it will make you sick? (And why worry so much if you don’t think you might get sick?) Believe me, what you can’t see in the kitchen is much worse than a table top. The last time I got sick from eating in a restaurant was about 1982, from some bad cheese on nachos in a ratty little place that looked questionable before we went in. (We were in our 20s and invincible. I wouldn’t go in there now.)
It must really diminish your enjoyment to worry so much about these things every time.

And, before the absolutists have at me, I am a certain level of mindful, but if I were to worry about some of these things, I would take steps myself to deal with them. A quick swipe with a disinfecting wipe if I think the table hasn’t been cleaned properly. A quick dab of hand sanitizer after touching the tableside iPad.

I have been severely immuno-compromised in my life (chemo and radiation) and aside from taking some very basic precautions, I just don’t worry that much, and I tend to not get sick, even after eating in diners and coffee shops that rely on turning over the tables quickly, and thus don’t necessarily sterilize everything.

jca's avatar

One of the people in my organization does restaurant inspections. I asked him once about bugs in restaurants, does he see a lot of them? He said bugs are not the problem. The problem is sick employees cooking your food. Because they don’t want to call out sick, they come in with all kinds of illnesses.

I tend not to get sick often, either, and I think it’s to my benefit that I’m not overly worried about germs. We’re exposed to germs all over, and as long as we wash our hands and use basic common sense (like keeping germy fingers away from our eyes and mouths), then we’ll probably live to see another day.

ibstubro's avatar

I was raised at a time when your silverware never touched the table, @Earthbound_Misfit. It was seen as unsanitary. Even the greasy-spoon diners had disposable paper place mats. We ate out on Sunday’s at full service restaurants because my mother was determined that her kids know table manners and etiquette. We were required to eat with the proper fork and to dip our soup from the back of the bowl (which was never to be tilted or lifted). At home we used cloth place mats that were regularly laundered. Co-incidentally, my S/O will not eat at the table here at home today without a place mat.

Where did getting sick come in, @canidmajor? To me it’s etiquette as much as anything. I don’t “worry” over it. I generally eat with the same bunch and it’s become common practice for someone in the group to request extra napkins when we’re seated.
Once upon a time the ‘paper napkin’ joints all had a dispenser on the table, but no more. Once upon a time you were given a separate salad fork, but no more. If I have to save my fork between salad and entree, I want a damned napkin to rest it on.

I have worked in a lot of restaurants, and I’ll almost guarantee you that if you let me in a restaurant that’s been in business more than a year, I can find something that will turn the uninitiated’s stomach, @jca. I watched a live cockroach crawl across the sushi at the most popular buffet in town at 4 in the afternoon, and it was so common-place that the server just ‘thumbed’ the roach and went on.

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro I’m pretty sure it’s proper etiquette to tip a bowl away from you to get the last bits.

ibstubro's avatar

Correct you are, @JLeslie:
3. To get to the last drops of soup, it’s fine to tip your soup bowl or plate away from you.
Probably easier to just tell a kid to leave it set. Period. :)

Darth_Algar's avatar

Manners are one thing (people who smack their lips are a peeve of mine, and personally I think it should be justifiable homicide to kill those people), but fussing over the angle of the bowl…goddamn….

anniereborn's avatar

How I eat soup….with a soup spoon. How I get the last drops, I drink the bowl like a cup.

ibstubro's avatar

Well, it turned out my mother was right.
My Aunt took my cousin and I to President Carter’s inauguration (at the ages of 16 and 15) in part because she knew we would never be an embarrassment to her.

I drink from the bottom of the bowl at home, much like @anniereborn.
I tilt or even lift the bowl at a casual restaurant.
If called upon, I can hold my own at a 4 star restaurant.

There’s comfort in knowledge.
I’m perfectly comfortable with this.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro But the utensils are on the tablecloth!

Unbroken's avatar

http://www.virginiahopkinstestkits.com/hand_sanitizers.html

I was raised with placemats and table linens at home and even at the local pizza joint.

ibstubro's avatar

Yes, @dappled_leaves, and I’m sure that at $100+ per head, the table cloth is changed after every seating.
I would be perfectly happy with a freshly laundered table cloth.
I know of no such establishment in my area that does that any more.

You came late to the discussion intent on being argumentative, @dappled_leaves:
”@ibstubro Couldn’t you simply put your knife and fork on your plate instead? Surely you don’t put the napkin in your lap while waiting for the meal to arrive.”

How stupid is that? If you share an appetizer, everyone at the table is going to heap their silverware on the ap plate in order to access a napkin? Perhaps you’ve never been to a restaurant that brought bread or chips before the first course?

I don’t know what is so difficult to understand that I was raised so that your silverware was never in contact with the table.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@ibstubro Actually, I was just having fun with the question. Thanks for calling me stupid.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@ibstubro, I think the problem is that your discomfort with placing your cutlery on a table unless there’s a placemat or tablecloth covering the table surface seems a tad irrational. I can understand it’s how you grew up and what you are accustomed to, but it doesn’t seem like a logical requirement. The only reason I can see for your discomfort is a fear of germs, but the tablecloth or placemat might not have been changed between diners (or even many diners). People cut corners to save time and costs. The cutlery might have been handled by someone who didn’t wash their hands after going to the bathroom or who has a cold or has been fingering the cold sore on their face. If you touch your chair, you’re picking up germs. The table top is one surface amongst many that could carry germs.

We get that it’s how you grew up and what you prefer, but for some of us, it doesn’t make a lot of sense.

ibstubro's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit, honestly, I think the problem is people making negative contributions. What was the question?
“Do you have a ‘restaurant rule’ that’s outside of current conventions, but you strongly feel should be SOP?”
NOT:
“How do you feel about your tableware touching the table in a restaurant?”

I guess I don’t understand how picking apart another member’s opinion is viewed as constructive (or “fun” as @dappled_leaves would have it) on a social question?

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@ibstubro, without speaking for @dappled_leaves because this is just my take on the interchange, I’m pretty sure she did not intend you to feel picked on and I’d put money on the fact that she wouldn’t have intended to cause you hurt for fun. Nonetheless, I can see that you are feeling attacked and I’m sorry for that. I know that’s not my intention with my posts.

Going to the question, you asked for people to present ‘rules’ they’d like to see implemented. Our posts are surely only suggestions and as such they’re open to some debate. My suggestion was the inclusion of dietary information on fine dining menus or at least on the establishment’s website. That drew input from @JLeslie which led to more discussion between us about whether that’s necessary or not. It’s the nature of Fluther to debate and discuss, as irritating as that can be at times.

If restaurant rules were to be imposed (and I realise this is a hypothetical situation), other patrons would be affected and the discussion here shows how difficult it would be for any establishment to impose additional conditions on dining conventions. What works for one, will not work for others. You have preferences that I feel are unnecessary. I have preferences other people feel are superfluous.

This is a good question @ibstubro. The evidence for that is that it has generated discussion and debate if not agreement.

ibstubro's avatar

”@ibstubro Actually, I was just having fun with the question.”
@dappled_leaves

Share the “fun”? @Earthbound_Misfit?

Where is the “fun” in @dappled_leaves‘s posts?

Question?

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@ibstubro, I acknowledge that you feel your answers have been picked apart and certainly I can see people disagreed with your opinion and idea. However, from my perspective, I can’t see anyone being disrespectful. I’m not going to explain why I think the fun comment was made, I’ll leave that to the person who made it if they want to explain. However, if you sincerely feel you’ve been treated unfairly or too harshly, you should flag those comments.

ibstubro's avatar

Fun’s, fun

More likely, like 98% of new and former members, @Earthbound_Misfit, I’ll get tired of fucking with it and just find something constructive to do.

I don’t understand the motivation for deconstructing a Social question on Fluther. Either you have a contribution, or you do not. Why are there so many subtractors? Why is there such a compulsion to negate the ideas an opinions of others? Why aren’t these people asking questions of their own, if they’re so keen to psychosis in napkins?

Do you realize how ludicrous your request for dietary information is, in a chef inspired restaurant?

canidmajor's avatar

First of all, @ibstubro, you asked a yes-or-no question, and didn’t specify that you really didn’t want the “nos” to comment beyond the one word. Secondly, you repeatedly intimated that you found these various things to be disgusting. If not concern about possible contamination (and, not illogically, the possibility of getting ill), then why in the world such concern?
Maybe ask the question in General if you don’t want us to shift the focus slightly based on your own words.

We all stayed within the topic, until you got upset with how we discussed it.

ibstubro's avatar

I don’t see where there was problem until @dappled_leaves decided to have “fun”, @canidmajor.

And I don’t personally give a rat’s rump because it’s a Social question and I make if a habit it encourage all to participate, but where did you infer that anyone was being “forced” to go to a restaurant? And who said restaurants are so contaminated as to make us sick?

“It must really diminish your enjoyment to worry so much about these things every time.”
“A quick swipe with a disinfecting wipe if I think the table hasn’t been cleaned properly.”

LOL
I prefer to just ask, “Could we get some extra napkins, please?”

canidmajor's avatar

“I do not want my silverware resting on the bare table.
Yuck.
The table rag likely wiped anything from the floor to baby vomit before it wiped my table.”

“I recently noted at a local restaurant that the bus person had a plastic tub (like an ice cream tub) with a rag in it at the bus station. Of course they’re very diligent about wiping the chairs as well as the table tops.

Shudder.”

These statements indicate a level of disgust. And my previous post was not directed only at you, @ibstubro, but at a general level of “wishing that they did it differently” that I saw.
I’m sorry that you are distressed by how the conversation developed, here, I thought it was an interesting question.

Unfollowing so that my part in this bizarre little tangent won’t continue. Too far off.

Aethelwine's avatar

I’ll take an extra napkin, please.

jca's avatar

I was in a restaurant before and something happened that was somewhat annoying. I was with a friend in an upscale pizza and pasta joint (they have all kinds of entrees from steak to pasta to regular pizza, and they have wine and live jazz on weekends). We got a basket of bread on the table, and we both had caprese salad (mozz, tomato and basil) and I had a slice. The waiter/host took the bread off the table, took it in the back and then appeared with it and gave it to new patrons. I never had that happen. Usually if they give you bread, they leave it there until the end. It was actually really good bread and my friend said she was going to take it and give to to her mother’s chickens. She didn’t say anything when the guy removed it from the table, but I was somewhat taken aback as I was still eating and what if we wanted to eat some more bread?

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

^ I would have asked for another basket of bread. What an odd practice.

Brian1946's avatar

I would have done the same thing as @Earthbound_Misfit.

However, I would have been tempted to write, “The basket of bread that you took from us without asking, is your tip” on the check.

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