01 June 2009

"Monday, Monday, can't trust that day" --The Mamas and the Papas


Pop Quiz!
Because it's Monday and that's the type of horror that comes with Monday. Don't start sweating yet. Even though you didn't study over the weekend, you know this one. And, besides, Susie Derkins will probably let you cheat off her, again, but, at this point, you'll probably have to stop pretending you don't know her when she says "Hi" in the hall.

Here's the scenario:

You come to dine at a restaurant. Before you is a single knife and fork. Your appetizer comes and you employ your knife and fork. When you are finished, the wait-person heads over to collect your appetizer plate.

Do you:

  • put your dirty knife and fork on the plate for clearing? OR
  • retain your knife and fork for use during the next course?
And what is your reaction if you put your shmutzy knife and fork on the plate for clearing and the wait-person takes them off the plate and puts them back on the table in front of you?

What can you reasonably expect?

And now for way beyond reasonable...

20 comments:

Fearless in Toronto said...

I put the knife and fork on the plate. If the server puts the knife and fork back on the table, I won't make a big fuss over it, depending upon the restaurant in question, and whether or not it is is pretending to be a fine dining establishment (and charging those prices).

charlotteharris said...

Proper etiquette dictates that you place the knife and fork on the plate to signal you are finished. The server should bring you new flatware appropriate for the next course. If the server does not do so, then you just know that you're eating in a restaurant that doesn't properly train its staff. It might not be worth reacting to if the food is great and the restaurant is more of a casual atmosphere all around anyway.

Narm said...

I only ordered meals I can eat with my hands.

Or feet.

Figure that one out.

Gilahi said...

So just to be sure I understand this... Narm either orders meals that he can eat with his hands or he orders feet? I don't even know of a restaurant where you can get good feet these days.

AbbotOfUnreason said...

I agree with Toronto. You just can't predict what these people are going to do. It's best to be prepared for anything.

What I hate is when they come between courses and use that little squeegie thing to scrape off the table. I paid for those crumbs! I might want them later.

I like the manager in the video. "Why don't you just eat it!"

AbbotOfUnreason said...

I thought he meant that he consumed the food through his hands instead of his mouth.

You can still get pigs feet up in Lexington Market, I b'lieve.

f.B said...

since neither choice is "throw a tantrum" -- something i find servers are always open to seeing patrons do -- i suppose "placing the utensils for clearing" will have to do.

liferehab said...

I usually keep my silverwear unless the appetizer totally doesn't go with what I ordered. If the server took silverwear off a plate and put it on the table, I wouldn't approve. I probably wouldn't say anything, but I wouldn't go back.

Liebchen said...

Let them clear it. I can't think of a time when the server took my utensils *off* my plate and put them on the table. Maybe I repressed it.

Barbara said...

I always hang onto my utensils -- shmutzy or no -- so I won't be forced to eat like an Ethiopian. I suppose I could take a chance and ask for new utensils if they aren't forthcoming...

Mike said...

I've got a system. I just wipe the utensils on my sleeve so they've got a fresh start for the next course. But definatly not the sleeve I wipe my nose with. That would just be wrong.

Alex said...

if it's a basic dive and I suspect that I might be left without silverware otherwise I'll keep it...

if it's a pricier place, I'll put it on the plate (in many places, they'll take it and give you a new set even if you try to keep it).

If they take it off the plate (which has never happened), I might note it as a sign that the service is a bit less than what the place is pretending to offer, and might weigh it with other factors in deciding whether to come back... but I wouldn't make a fuss. I'd hate to spoil my night and others' over something so petty.

Speaking of making a fuss, I think that waiter handled that customer very well -- I love the part where he tries to point out the orange wall as an example of an angry color...

G said...

If the server put the knife and fork back onto my table (which is not proper in a fine restaurant), I would not say a word for I know that pissed off servers can put nasty things in my food: bug, booger, spit, shit, antifreeze, LSD, and the list goes on. Never fuck with a server!

Cyndy said...

I put the knife and fork on the plate. If they take it off they probably just don't know any better and sometimes I don't really care but other times it makes me cringe. I guess it depends on my mood.

lacochran said...

Fearless in Toronto, G: So you see it as a matter of restaurant quality level? Huh.

charlotteharris: Agreed. That's what *should* happen.

Narm: It does simplify things.

Gilahi: You never hear Seistema talking about where to get a good foot.

AbbotofUnreason: That was my favorite moment, too.

f.B: Drama always makes for a memorable meal.

liferehab, Liebchen, Alex: It's happened to me. And, thanks for weighing in.

Barbara: I suppose...

Mike: So, so wrong.

Cyndy: So true. (As with so many things.)

Hannah said...

If it was just after appetizers, I would retain the cutlery. Call me crazy, but I think the next set of fresh cutlery are only necessary for dessert.
If I was the waiter in the video I would have slapped the customer! "Its too orange!" LOL.

AbbotOfUnreason said...

It suddenly occurs to me that nobody has mentioned the environmental impacts of washing so many utensils.

Kate said...

I guess it depends on where I am (if it's a fancy/expensive place, I will let the server clear my silverware and they WILL bring me replacements), but for the most part I hold onto my silverware. I've had enough servers take either my or my husband's silverware and never bring replacements without one of us asking for them. Lame.

AbbotOfUnreason said...

just got back from a Cuban restaurant. I put the fork on the plate after the appetizer. The waiter, picked up the fork and handed it to me. He actually asked me, "Do you want this?"

lacochran said...

Hannah: Thanks for weighing in.

AbbotofUnreason: You just did.

Kate: Lame, indeed.

AbbotofUnreason: "Do you want this?"! You should have said, "Yes, I'll take it as a souvenir." and pocketed it. Cheeky server!