It's probably a safe bet to not mess with a member of the waitstaff at a restaurant. Even though someone might think they're getting the last laugh by dining and dashing or making fun of a server or constantly complain about their food, they're not. They never do and they never will.
A Reddit thread recently asked people in the food service industry to share the most terrible way they ever got revenge on a customer who made their life a living nightmare. The results, well the results will make just about anyone with a working brain realize that maybe it's best to just leave the waiter alone next time. All post have been edited for clarity.
"I worked the prep line at a major sit down burger restaurant. During a busy Sunday rush, a party came in which included a complete and total piece of trash of a woman. The server was a very small girl, like just over 4 feet, and the queen of the family was treating her like garbage while they all ordered their food. The order got placed, food went out, and the woman complains and griped and took it out on the server. The server was crying at this point, full on sobbing, and returned the food to the back to me and said the lady wanted it to go because we obviously couldn't make it correct in time for them to leave for their afternoon movie or whatever. After saying this, she ran to the back to cry.
'Okay,' I thought, 'I can take care of this.' I remade her food. The condiments came from the crusty corners of the mayo/mustard/ketchup pans. The lettuce and tomato were the freeze-dried pieces from the bottoms of their pans. And the fries. Good god the fries. I reached behind the fry drop next to the grease fryers and scrape crusty, old, dehydrated fries that have been there for hours into her to-go box and seal that up. I even drew a smiley face on top and sent it out.
As she was leaving, I saw her pop the box open and eat a fry. Afterwards, I told the server what I did. She was equal parts furious I did that to her guest, and grateful that I cared enough about her to get revenge. I told her we look out for each other, it was a crazy busy Sunday after all."
"When I first moved to New York City, my first job was waiting tables in Times Square. It was terrible. I had been a waiter for years. Sometimes a person would stiff you. But here, you would get stiffed many times a shift.
One day, I had a table of two. They were the absolute worst. They sent every soda, drink, french fry, you name it back to the bar/kitchen. They would yell for me while I was clearly talking to other tables. After about 90 minutes of being the worst and spending about $65, they didn't tip me anything. They also left a huge mess on the table and a giant puddle of sprite and mango juice on the ground. So as I was on my hands and knees cleaning up, wondering how much more of this I could take (I walked out about three weeks later), I noticed the girlfriend left her really nice scarf on the chair. The rags I needed to clean up the drinks were about four feet away from me, and her scarf was within arms reach. So I used her scarf to dry up all the sticky puddle she had left behind.
She came back about five minutes later, she asked if she left anything. So naturally, I pretended to be dumb and eventually remembered, 'Oh, is this your scarf. I found it...in that puddle under your table. Have a nice day.' I then handed her this dirty, sopping wet scarf and continued on with my life."
"I once loudly embarrassed that person in a roomful of customers.
This guy was a regular, and also a total scumbag. He would snap his fingers and yell across the restaurant to get my attention, snottily mumble orders instead of asking for things like a normal person and completely ignore me if I came to the table and he didn't need anything. The event in question was on a busy weekend. I was the only server (small restaurant that only sat 40ish people) and was running around like a madwoman because most of the tables were filled and there was one 'big' party (eight people) there as well. This party was seated next to this guy's table. I admittedly hadn't checked on his group since bringing them their food, but I hadn't been gone long. I had a tray of plates for the big party in my hand, and as I was moving towards their table, the guy decided to get my attention by swinging his arm out into the aisle, catching me in the legs. I could've fallen, plates would've broken, and very hot food could've gone all over people, namely the little kids who were seated at the end of the table.
I put the tray down and lost it at the guy. I was quiet at first, but the angrier I got the louder I got until I was yelling at him about how his obscenely rude, childish behavior could have seriously burned little kids, injured me, caused damage to the restaurant and potentially gotten us sued, just because he wanted a refill.
To my surprise, people started applauding at the end of my tirade, I didn't get fired that night, and the prick... didn't really quit being mean, but he was certainly quieter. Given his attitude, I'm surprised he didn't complain to the owner about my behavior, but I'm not going to complain."
"I was working at a well known brunch buffet in the United Kingdom. This particular day, I had a busy section as the hotel down the road was hosting a medical convention. My section was mainly for tables of one or two. In comes a portly doctor in his 50s who goes up for a large plate and asks for a large Coke. I get him his drink while he's at the buffet getting his food.
I was polite through his meal, checking back, getting him a refill when requested, but didn't really have time to small talk as I had a few other tables. Throughout his meal, I noticed he was writing something on a small piece of paper. I paid it no real mind and when it came to his bill he paid in cash. I gave him his change, thanked him for his business, and left him to go on with his day.
I wasn't expecting a tip (it's not as prevalent in the UK but it's nice to get one). He leaves and I go to clear and rest his table. I look at the bill sleeve and see the piece of paper he had been writing on. I read it and was in shock to discover what he'd done.
Now I'm a big girl. Always have been, it's a metabolism with a dash of PCOS mixed in. I don't really mind, I like who I am now. But when this happened, I was 17 and had nowhere near the self love and confidence I do now. He had written a list of foods I should and shouldn't eat if I wanted to lose weight. This was without prompting, without us discussing my weight at all.
I was shocked, then angry but nowhere near as upset as my then manager. He was beyond words, he was that angry. He had grown up with my cousins and saw me as a little sister, so he was quite protective of me. He asked me if he was still there, I said the doctor had left. We knew he'd probably be back as the conference went over the weekend. This is when we started to plot revenge.
Two days later, the doctor came back this time with some of his colleagues. They were seated in my friend Jake's section, who knew what he'd done, and is a vindictive man at the best of times. He allowed them to eat and have their meal, pulling him into a false sense of security. When it came to the check he told me to give it to them, I did. I then proceeded to give him back the note he'd left me and said, 'I wanted to give this back to you. I don't require this.'
He was shocked! He thought I would welcome his golden advice! It also piqued some interest in his colleagues. One asked: 'What is it?'
'Unsolicited dietary advice,' I replied, 'Unneeded, unwanted, and unprovoked.'
His colleagues were shocked at his lack of tact and had gone a delicious shade of red, his mouth flopping open like a fish. They paid the bill, and made sure both myself and Jake got a tip. The rude doctor apologized, and I hope he learned a lesson that day."
"I used to wait tables at this place called Winstead's, a 1950's burger joint in Kansas City. The place is huge, and serving sections are massive, and since it's the only cheap eats option for shoppers, it gets really busy really fast. Customers pay the server at the table, and of course, people take advantage of the whole 'pay at the end of your meal' thing.
One day, after my shift had just started, three teenage girls sat themselves in my section at a table close to the front door. I guess I felt a little suspicious at first, seeing teenagers sitting close to an easy exit, but they seemed well mannered and polite, and they were my only table. After they had finished eating, I asked them if they wanted any dessert. At first, they shook their heads, but then one of the girls perked up and said 'I'll take a piece of cheesecake.' I looked at the other two girls and asked them again just in case they might've changed their mind, and they both ordered milkshakes. I walked over to the computer, and as I put the order in, I heard the front door open. I turned around and saw them running out to a car that had pulled up. They sped off before I could catch them, and I was livid. For some reason, when someone runs out on their check, I am more upset if they were nice to me throughout the meal. Makes it seem more malicious. Anyway, when I came back inside, I noticed my coworker standing in front of their table holding one of the girl's cell phone in the air. At this point, all the other tables were aware of the commotion, so I announced 'they left their phone,' and I'm pretty sure a few people clapped. I imagine there was a fist bump. Feeling excited and vindicated, I quickly realized that I should take full advantage of the situation.
First thing was first. I checked to see if there was a lock on the screen. There was, but a guy I worked with had once shown me how he could figure out the swipe pattern on my phone by looking at fingerprint smudges. I thought it was worth a try, so I took it to him. As I walked into the kitchen, the phone rang.
Man's (or teenage boy's) voice: 'That's my sister's phone.'
Me: 'Yeah, well your sister ran out on her bill, and the only way I'm giving the phone back is if she pays me.'
I could hear her protesting in the background.
Me: 'Let me talk to her.'
Me: 'It really sucks that you ran out. I was super nice to you and your friends, and that's a really terrible thing to do.'
She hung up.
So I took the phone into the back, and the guy figured out the passcode. I proceeded to call her mother (telling her about the incident and informing her of the lewd pics she'd been texting people) and sent messages to her friends: 'I ran out on a check and left my phone on the table,' or to various boys she was flirting with: 'I think I luv u. Will u b my boyfriend?' I'm sure the next day school was very confusing for her.
THEN, a guy came in asking for the phone. I told him I wanted her to come get it. He said she wouldn't come in. I told him if she didn't come in, then I would sell her phone to make back the money for her unpaid bill (we had to pay out of our own pocket for this).
She texted me from another number that night, calling me names, trying to convince me to give it back to her, but she still would not agree to pay the check. She just kept avoiding the question.
The next day, I sold her phone for the price of the bill, plus a sizable tip. Revenge combined with the piece of cheesecake she abandoned was sweet."
"There's a first time for everything, I guess. I've had a couple of close calls over the years but I've never had anyone dash on me until now.
We were slowing down on Friday night and a woman came in and sat down in my section. She seemed perfectly normal and I didn't get any of the sketchy vibe. She said she was waiting for her friend to join her but wanted to go ahead and have a drink or two and while she waited. Cool, no problem. Two drinks later, she asked if she could borrow my lighter and go smoke. Again, no sketchy vibe, no problem. I gave it to her and she walked out in our little smoking area outside.
I was joking around with my other table across from her since they were regulars and I hadn't seen them in a while. About 10 minutes passed while we caught up before I realized she wasn't back yet. I went and poked my head outside and saw the area was empty.
Son of a... This woman either climbed over or crawled through the bushes that surround the square of concrete and dashed. I closed the door and walked back over to my section trying my best to not get mad as I cleaned up her stuff. Then I realized that she'd stolen my lighter, too, and that's when I got mad. As the only smoker still working that night, stealing my lighter was a bigger sin than bouncing on a $14 dollar tab.
My other table asked what was up and I told them. Shocked, one of the customers said, 'Dude, that's so messed up! I'm pretty sure she's a bartender at Another Place. How could she do that?'
I'm willing to bet you all can see where this is going now, right? You are correct. My eyes must have lit up like a Christmas tree. After asking the guy if he was sure, I put her ticket in my book and just grinned and told him that if he's right, his next meal is on me. I've never been to her place and actually only had a vague idea of where it even was but Google is your buddy.
Fast forward to Sunday. I shaved, put on a hat, and pretty much looked nothing like what I look like in my work clothes. I went to Another Place with two plans in mind. One, if she recognized me, I was just going to call her out in front of everyone for being a dumpster human and be on my way either with or without my money. Two, if she didn't, I was going to do the exact same thing to her. There was also a plan three where I just enjoy a few drinks if the guy was wrong but I was feeling lucky.
The bar was packed due to football but I found a stool and squeeze in. The guy was right! There she was. The witch that dashed on me. She was weeded by herself and barely looked at me when asking what I wanted, so Plan Two was in full effect.
I figured I'd be nice and keep my tab at about what I had to pay, so after my third drink, I told her I had to go make room for another. She gave me the bartender 'I really don't care' laugh and I slipped her folded receipt from Friday under my glass as I stood up and walked first toward the bathrooms and then out the front door.
Am I wrong for doing this? Probably. Do I really care? Nope. I've had some monumentally awful tables/bar guests over the years and nothing I could have ever done to them could possibly have felt as good as my revenge today.
Only two things could have made it better. I wish I'd have thought to write 'Get bent' or something on the receipt but it never occurred to me until I was almost home, and I wish I could have seen her face when she picked up the check she bounced on. All in all, it was a pretty good Sunday afternoon."
"I worked at a large seafood restaurant that was pretty upscale. I had one regular customer who was a businessman of some kind who came by once or twice a week with co-workers (probably after work).
This guy was a major prick. He would order ridiculous drinks from the bar and not tip the bartender (and frequently insist that our bartender with 12 years experience made his drink incorrectly), abuse waitstaff (myself included), order items not on the menu, and was really arbitrary about tipping (sometimes he'd leave massive tips but frequently absolutely nothing). Maybe he did this to seem like a big-shot to his co-workers (who were usually nice) or maybe his parents just didn't love him enough.
Anyway, every time this dude came in, he ordered snow crab. Anyone not familiar with this delectable treat should know that you eat it with your hands and it's quite messy. So, every time he would take off his watch before he ate. You might see where this is going. One night, he took off his watch, presumably forgot about it, and left. I was hosting that night and his table's server came up to me and told me that the guy had left his watch. Conveniently, he also neglected to leave a tip of any kind. I took this prick's watch, sold it on eBay for over $500, and gave it to the poor server as his deserved tip."
"A little while ago I was working a shift at a very busy, large restaurant at a very popular tourist trap. The kind of place that doubles the price of your entree because we have a pretty view and claims their staff is a big family that exists only to serve. Anyway, a friend of mine gets a table like this and they're honestly beyond the average degree of terrible. Anytime something displeased them, they shouted as if announcing it to the rest of the guests and my friend would turn beet red. They'd got upset at things like:
Customer: 'Her fork is cold, how come I don't get a cold fork?'
Friend: 'Well, Ma'am, traditionally we only provide a chilled fork with salads, but I'd be happy to bring you one.'
Customer: 'Don't be making excuses. Don't give me attitude because you messed up and I'm calling you on it. Just get me the fork.'
Ridiculous things like this. Or throwing a fit because this particular seafood restaurant didn't have tater tots.
'What kind of "classy" place doesn't give the customer what they want?'
There was a problem with everything. They were the kinds of people who started setting in the ground work for a free dessert before they step through the doors. And you could tell that they were good at what they did, they must've been given free desserts at every meal for years. It's the only explanation for frankly impressive level of obese they'd become, considering how cheap they were.
Well, our city had realized they could make loads off tricky parking meters/rules and we'd get a lot of questions from our customers needing explanations. Another important detail to note is that while there were expensive meters and parking lots near the restaurant there was a MASSIVE hill a few blocks up where you'd have to park if the place was busy. Easily a 20 minute walk up this steep hill to the nearest parking spots. And it seems that they people had to park way up there. At one point, near the end of their meal, the guy waved me down and asked,
'What time is it safe to park without filling the meter? It's about six now, it's fine, right?'
Knowing full well that parking was free at 6 pm, I realized this was an opportunity to get in some petty revenge. I looked him dead in the eye and said,
'Oh, gee, I'm not exactly sure, but I'm pretty certain it doesn't end until 8. You know, we're so busy around here, I think they made it later than normal. And if I were you, I'd check just in case, they're very strict about ticketing around here...'
The guy rolled his eyes, wheezed, and lifted himself out of his poor chair.
I saw him like 45 minutes later, red faced and sweating. His buddies ended up having to wait for him before they ordered dessert, but by then I guess they were too tired to try and scam us for a free sundae."
"I was a waiter for four years at a busy diner. Late one day, I took this HUGE to-go order for a company lunch, something like 30+ meals for these people. It was somewhere around $330 total if I remember correctly.
I scaled back the number of tables I was taking from six to three so I could properly label, sort, organize everything for this order. I spent a long time on it, labeling everything correctly, like noting which burger had bacon, which type of pancake was in there, which tacos were flour or corn, etc. At the end, I had SIX giant carryout bags packed with stuff.
When the guy came in, I greeted him and took all the bags out and the first thing he said to me was, 'I'm sorry but I can't tip you.' I wasn't expecting the world of this guy but I had taken a lot of time on it and I was hoping for, say, $20. I had easily missed out on $30 in tips at this point. I told the guy that I have to tip out on my total sales and this order alone would mean I would have somewhere around $7 in payouts to support staff, so I was definitely losing money. He was really flippant with the whole story about how it's a business account and they don't allow it and blah blah blah. I respectfully told him that there's a lot I did for them to make it easier for everyone, so he thanked me and left.
The next week, they called again and put in a same-sized order but my manager knew they wouldn't tip and so he took the order. I did offer to 'help' the order with him, and he had no idea it was me who had done it the week previously. So I straight-up didn't label anything, or the things I did label were my personal restaurant shorthand. Black bean tacos on corn with no green onions or cheese? BBCoNGoNC. Ham and cheese omelet, add mushrooms? 14/OmlM. 12 pancakes got 10 syrup containers, the little ones, and we usually give extra if you're nice. And so on for every stinking piece of food in those six bags. I never heard anything about it but I hope they all got confused and ate cold, soggy food."
"So two nights ago, my co-worker carelessly let a lady use the restroom who wasn't a customer. I was walking past as she came out and she had the biggest grin on her face as she told me, 'You have a problem in the women's room,' and strutted out of the restaurant, proud as a peacock. I went and checked. Long story short, I had to scoop soiled toilet paper out of the toilet before I could clear it. I managed to get it cleaned up while only puking once. After this, this lady's face and her ugly fake fur vest were burned into my memory, even after getting black out wasted to try and forget.
Fast forward to tonight. I was called in last minute because my coworker who let the lady into the bathroom didn't show up for work and got fired so I got to work on my day off. After work, I go to my favorite neighborhood watering hole, across the street from work and who do I see, the Prime Minister of Poo herself, miss ugly vest. I don't think she noticed me because she is already 3 sheets to the wind and focused on her video poker. When I first saw her in my restaurant, I knew I recognized her, and it hit me when I saw her tonight: I had seen her playing video poker regularly in my favorite bar.
So being that I drink at this bar five nights a week, I am very good friends with all the bartenders and servers, and I know all the bouncers pretty well. So I told one of the bartenders and one of the bouncers the story to vent. The bouncer then tells me, 'Well, she won't be let back in here again after tonight, it is only a matter of time until she does that here.'
He even told me that if she asks, his reason for banning her would be, 'You have a problem in your women's room.'"
"One night, a couple days ago, someone called the pizza place where I work and asked if they could get two separate pizza orders. I said sure but I'd need two phone numbers. She said ok. So I asked for the first number, she told me it and gave me her name. For the sake of privacy, I will call her 'Jesse.' I said ok and she proceeded to order a plate of nachos and a 20-inch pizza, our biggest size and usually takes about 35 minutes to cook. I said ok and told her the total. She said ok and we moved on to the next one.
She gave me a new number and name, 'Karen.' She then ordered a small pizza and an order of fries. I said ok and told her the total. She asked if she could pay over the phone with a card. I said that she didn't have to and that she could just pay at the door. She insisted so I asked the manager if it was ok. He said it was, and to just send the order and then close the check with her card. I said alright and serviced the order. I pulled the order up on the computer again and opened the page where the customer paid for their food. I asked her for her card number and she told me it as I typed it into the machine. I asked for all the other bits (Expiration, Security code) and it said the card was declined, and the total was only $2 smaller. This meant there was only about $2 on that card.
I told her this and she got upset. And I mean UPSET. She started yelling through the phone about how I was a thief and how I was scamming her. I asked her to hold and told her I would get my manager. I handed him the phone and I stood there listening. I could hear the screaming from a few feet away. My manager asked her to calm down multiple times but she didn't stop. Then, he straight up hung up on her. I was like 'Wa?' He never hangs up on someone. He is one of those 'the customer is always right' kind of guys. He told us if the same person called to hang up on them. We all agreed. A few minutes later, the phone started ringing. My coworker answered it and we all stood around her as she put it on speaker phone. It was the same voice. She demanded we give her free food and that 'your attitudes are bad for business' (relevant later).
My coworker promptly hung up. We later we found out that that customer worked at a separate restaurant and one of my other coworkers (C2 for short) went there earlier and found A CLOT OF HAIR in her sandwich. And I mean like a full lock of hair. Like, the stuff you'd expect to find in a shower drain. C2 posted it on Facebook and obviously got a full refund. Apparently, the rude customer was the manager there and didn't like the post C2 made. So this whole thing was some sort of petty revenge. I have never had a customer that was that much of a moldy witch. And thankfully she hasn't called back yet."
"The KFC I work at doesn't get a lot of business unfortunately, so my manager understandably can't have a lot of employees on the clock at once, especially on weekdays when its mostly not busy. Of course, this means that when we do get busy, we're short on staff and can't keep up with orders. What we usually do is simply stop taking orders until most of the orders taken have been passed out or until customers start to complain at the speaker.
Well, on one of the occasions this has happened, I had a Hispanic customer go up to the speaker, in his minivan with his family and whatnot, but I had to put him on hold so I could handle my other orders. I have about six other orders and I need to help my manager pack them so she can run and help the front. Anyway, after about three minutes at the speaker (an eternity in fast food, I must admit) he just drives forward, away from the speaker. I assume he's just changed his mind or something. Whatever, right?
He drives up to my window and stops, and he asks if I can take his order at the window. I answered that that's against the 'store's policy,' since our goal is to keep customers at the window less than a minute. And besides I had a customer who did patiently wait for his order to be taken waiting for this guy at the window to move. I wasn't going to make the patient customer wait even more while I take and pack this guys order.
He wanted to convince me to change my mind and make an exception on his behalf but like many customers he forgets I'm just an employee and have no say in what happens in this store. I continually say 'I can't, I'm sorry' in that puppy dog way that makes reasonable customers go away with an 'well, alright then' look on their faces. But in the end, both of his attempts at convincing me and my attempts at keeping our discussion civil fail when he starts cussing at me in Spanish, in his thick Mexican accent, in front of his kids, might I add. Just as he says this he floors it and begins to drive away like the coward that he is. I wasn't too bothered by it thinking I'll never see him again anyways. That's typically my attitude towards customers. 'I'll never think of you again. You're dead to me. Suck on that, ese.' I mention the situation to my manager and we exchange the 'Ah, forget that guy' look.
Not five minutes later, he came in with his daughter (I presume) to the front of the store, ready to order his meal. At this point, things had actually settled down with the lunch rush now gone, so I quickly cleaned up as he was waiting behind another customer and tell my manager who he was and ask if I could please take his order.
Out of spite, hatred, and a thirst for revenge, I took his order with in the most respectful, nice and enthusiastic manner possible, and I mean over the top enthusiastic. I offered him drinks, dessert, plates, forks, sauces, the whole store practically all the while with a huge grin on my face. And to add to that I even took his order in fluent Spanish because [plot twist] I'm Mexican too, with a Caucasian complexion. I said, 'I did notice you called me a son of a harlot, you big idiot, and to reward you for that, I'm going to make you feel right at home.'
He looked embarrassed to say the least.
He never made eye contact.
He never said more than needed saying.
He never came back."