Servers Are Sharing Stories About Their Worst Customers And They're Brutal And Hilarious
Photo: u/tamiraisredditing / Reddit

Servers Are Sharing Stories About Their Worst Customers And They're Brutal And Hilarious

Voting Rules
Vote for the stories that make you want to refuse service.

A 17-top of disgruntled vegans, a family of 10 who want a table just before closing, and a woman who attacks a waiter for attempting to save her date's life are just a few of the stories being shared in the subreddit Tales from Your Server. These stories prove once again that waiters are the most underappreciated and underpaid members of the workforce.  

  • 1
    6,619 VOTES

    'Coolest. Boss. Ever'

    Posted by Redditor u/aaanon5402:

    It was my first day at a pizza restaurant. This place was always SLAMMED... it’s really where I learned how to be a good server, before that I worked at over staffed burger joints or Italian restaurants. Things were moving pretty fast but I was doing surprisingly well. I had about 10 tables and I was used to 3-4 table sections. I will never forget this couple that came in and sat down at table 24. They were an old couple. I’m talking both gray haired and over dressed to be at a pizza restaurant. I will say I did give them excellent service despite my frazzledness of starting a new job. I was feelin it, and felt great about handling all of my tables...until I did mess up. The man at table 24 handed me his card to close out. I’m BUSY. Like, didn’t even have time to pick a wedgie if I had one, busy.

    I go to the computer and swipe his card. Admittedly I forgot to print out the itemized receipt, which I get can be very frustrating. Man at table 24 had every right to be upset. But instead of asking me to grab the itemized receipt, he began to LOUDLY, in a small room, with a deep and firm tone tell me how horrible I am at my job. That no wonder I only got as far in life as working at a pizza shop. He kept going on with these TERRIBLE comments and wouldn’t let me walk away when I tried. So now all of my other tables just saw me get ripped a new a**hole, and I’m in the weeds after wasting time getting yelled at by this guy. The owner of the restaurant must have come in at some point. He saw this man yelling at me, came up to the table and did the most bad a** thing I’ve ever seen.

    Owner: “Excuse me sir, I am the owner of this establishment. I’m not sure what the problem is here and frankly, I don’t care. What I do care about is you belittling my waitress. So I’m going to ask you and your wife to leave and not come back to my restaurant.”

    Man at table 24: “Fine but you’ll be losing our business.”

    Owner: “I really don’t care, and don’t want people like you in my restaurant anyway.”

    It was the coolest sh*t I had ever seen. The owner STOOD THERE AND WAITED for these people to leave. It was f**king bad a**.

    After they left the owner came up to me and said: “F**k those people. You’re doing a great job and I wouldn’t have hired you if you didn’t show potential. If anyone else talks to you like that I want you to tell them to f**k off and get out. I don’t want their money.”

    Coolest. Boss. Ever.

    6,619 votes
  • 2
    3,266 VOTES

    Waitresses Can Wait Anywhere For Anyone

    Posted by Redditor u/tamiraisredditing:

    On my day off I scheduled a lunch date with a guy from school.

    Traffic was brutal so he was running late. I was sitting at my table, looking at the menu (note: this is not the restaurant I work at, it isn’t the same kind of food as the restaurant I work at, it is geographically nowhere near the restaurant I work at.)

    A woman came up and took my menu out of my hands.

    “Why are you just sitting here? We’ve been waiting for service for 45 minutes.”

    No they hadn’t. They came in the same time I did, ten minutes ago, and they had already gotten drinks.

    “Ma’m, I don’t work here.”

    I didn’t recognize her at this point.

    “Don’t lie to me, you’re a waitress, you served me just last week don’t you remember?”

    I vaguely remember her coming into my restaurant now because she complained her meal wasn’t served with hot sauce then sent it back because it was too spicy.

    “I am a waitress at local Mexican restaurant, but I am not a waitress at xxxxx."

    She says, "Same difference. You’re a waitress. Get a pen and paper and take down our orders.”

    “I am a waitress, but not here. I’m just trying to enjoy my lunch like you are. I am not employed here in any capacity.”

    To which she replies, “But you’re a trained waitress and this place is clearly running behind. Don’t you people take an oath or something?”

    A little bit of r/maliciouscompliance kicked in, because I rarely get to stand up to this kind of stupidity in my role as a server, because 99.9% of the time it happens while I’m actually at work.

    So I went over to their table with a pen and paper from my backpack. I wrote down all their orders. I said it would be 45 minutes and to just sit tight. I even brought over ketchup they asked for (just grabbed off another table) then...I left.

    I texted my date to meet me at a place a few blocks over.

    The next day, the lady had called my boss at my actual restaurant, as well as totally unleashed on the manager at the restaurant I was dining at (I felt bad when I realized the tough spot I’d left the people who actually work there in, so went back the next day to apologize and follow up on the aftermath. Thankfully they were chill and we had a great laugh over it.)

    They were like,“We were so confused because she described the server with explicit details but no one remotely like that works here so we thought she’d lost her mind.”

    My boss knew who I was from her description and told them he takes this very seriously and asked what day this occurred. Then when they told him he said “You must be mistaken, because that’s that server’s day off and she wasn’t here.”

    After some irate yelling and screaming at my very friendly manager about how I still need to “represent the restaurant wherever I go” she gave up.

    3,266 votes
  • 3
    4,447 VOTES

    'I'll Call The Police'

    Posted by Redditor u/RoadOdeLoad:

    I’m a cocktail waitress. I’m 7 months pregnant.

    A woman (the Karen) comes in with what I’m assuming was her husband and son and daughter and asks to be seated 4 for lunch. We’re not really a restaurant but we have a really small sandwich and wings menu.

    I give them menus and Karen says “But, wait, do you work here?” “Yep.” “But you’re pregnant, you can’t work here if you’re pregnant.” “I work here, I don’t drink here.” I say, with a laugh, trying to keep the mood light.

    The woman looks me over and says “Have you taken any prenatal courses? Do you really think that’s responsible to have your unborn baby in here?” This is where I made an error. I get defensive about anyone asserting I’m a bad mother, obviously. So I said “Well, you’ve brought your kids in here.” “Yes, and what kind of example do you think you’re setting for them?” I’m still collecting my thoughts at this point when they grunt and wave me away.

    I figure I can kiss my tip goodbye but hopefully that’ll be the end of a discussion.

    I see them flagging down the bartender after a few minutes and figure they’re ready so go over. Karen asks to speak to a manager. Now, they haven’t even gotten drinks yet, so I ask if there’s anything I can help them with and her husband (Mr. Karen) says really sternly “No, just a manager, didn’t you hear my wife?”

    The place is too small for a manager, it’s just servers and bartenders and two owners. The one who’s working is in the back on a phone call and will be pissed if I go and bother her.

    I realize maybe they’re still uncomfortable with my being pregnant so say “Maybe ‘Ella.’ (The other server) can help?” Karen gets up to physically look for the manager. I admit defeat and go back and drag her off her call.

    The owner goes over and with a big smile asks if there’s anything she can help them with. “Your server is pregnant.” Owner says she’s aware and asks if they’d prefer a different server.

    Karen: No no no, she can’t be a drink girl if she’s pregnant. That’s child abuse.

    Owner: I assure you, none of our employees drink on the clock. Especially not our pregnant ones. If you’d prefer I can have Ella serve you...

    Mr. Karen: I don’t want my kids seeing this!

    Owner: Maybe I’m missing something. Seeing what, exactly?

    Mr. Karen (talking really slowly and condescendingly): A. pregnant. woman. around. all. this. alcohol.

    Me: I don’t know what you’re insinuating but I would never drink during pregnancy.

    Karen: Look honey, didn’t you take a health class in junior high? With a drink right under you half the time, alcohol vapor is absorbed into your blood through the air and then that blood goes to the fetus and poisons it.

    Owner and I exchange a look and realize we won’t get anywhere with her.

    Owner: So we can have Ella serve you or I’m afraid there’s not much else we can do.

    Mr. Karen: We’re not leaving until she’s fired!

    Owner: We can’t help you.

    Mr. Karen: I’ll call the police! You’re an accomplice to child abuse!

    Owner: There is no child abuse to speak of sir, please leave.


    The entire time she’s delivering this tearful speech she’s looking around expecting others to, I don’t know, join in with her? Applaud?

    Owner: You’re disturbing my customers and if you don’t leave you’re trespassing and I’ll have to escalate this, which I really don’t want to do.


    This is an Irish pub and the owners are devout Catholics. She wasn’t having any of this.

    Owner: HEY. I don’t need anyone to tell me what Jesus said. If there were abuse here I’d have acted to stop it but there isn’t any. I need you to please leave.

    Mr. Karen: I’m calling the police.

    Owner: Do that.

    We just stop trying to service their table. As we all wait for the cops to arrive Karen keeps trying to give her sermon but there was a game on that people had come to watch and eventually everyone yelled at her until she piped down.

    Enter Awesome Officers. AO1 and AO2.

    AO1: (Town name) Police department. Is there a Mr. Karen in here somewhere?

    Mr. Karen: Right here officers!

    AO1: You said you were witnessing child abuse - are the parties involved still in the bar?

    They point me out. I pretend not to notice because I’m worried they’ll take them outside and I won’t be able to watch any more fireworks.

    AO2: So what exactly was going on?

    Karen: That woman was drinking! She’s pregnant, you can plainly see she’s very pregnant.

    Before I can go over and tell them she’s lying about my drinking, the officers look at each other and look back at the Karen family.

    AO2: That’s not illegal.

    Karen: WHAT?

    Mr. Karen: Look here now—

    AO1: It’s definitely not recommended but it isn’t illegal. Now do you know the woman, is she a friend of yours? Family?

    Karen: She works here. In a bar. And she’s pregnant!

    Mr. Karen: I want to see this place’s liquor license revoked.

    AO2: So, listen, she isn’t doing anything illegal. What I can do is I will talk to her, but we can’t take any action beyond that. Is there anything else you observed that you’d like to report?

    So AO2 comes over to me and takes me to a quiet spot while AO1 is getting their personal information and taking the rest of the statement. Karen is crying again and I assume bemoaning being the last bastion of good Christian morality in this bar.

    AO2 introduces himself and congratulated me on the pregnancy and says I probably overheard why they were called starts to offer me some public resources for new mothers, parenting classes etc. I didn’t want to interrupt him so was waiting for the right moment to interject with my innocence.

    Thats’s when patrons come over thinking I’m in trouble and start defending me. We have plenty of regulars who know me and they would not let this BS stand. They even complained to the officers that the owner had asked the Karen party to leave and they’d continued to make a scene.

    So Awesome Officers go talk to the owner who said she was just about to call them but sirens outside are bad for business and she was hoping the Karens would eventually leave on their own.

    The officers tell the Karen party they need to leave.

    Mr. Karen: This is a public place I have every right to be here if I want!

    AO1: No sir, this is a private business, and the business owners have asked you to leave. It sounds like more than once, but at least once since we’ve been here.


    AO2: I understand you’re upset. Let’s talk about it outside. (He places a hand on Mr. Karen and gives him a firm look.)

    This next part was said as Mr. Karen walks out backwards so he can keep yelling at us, but bumping into things every step of the way.

    Mr. Karen: I’ll be contacting the authorities about your liquor license. I happen to be close personal friends with the mayor! And you two, I want badge numbers. Don’t think we’re done here because we haven’t even started.

    So the officers took them out and as it was told to me by a regular who left around the same time, walked the Karens to their car, which was illegally parked in a handicap space. For which they were ticketed.


    4,447 votes
  • 4
    2,742 VOTES

    Slapping A Server

    Posted by Redditor u/Avianmosquito:

    I work as a bartender at a small restaurant. I was at work last night, and I'm working decently quick on account of it being Saturday. I am presently making a series of  Long Islands when I hear somebody on the other end of the restaurant demand to speak to a manager, and "...Maybe they can get us some ACTUAL service!".

    For the purposes of the restaurant this week, I am the manager. I, regretfully, set down 4/6  Long Islands, leaving two unhappy regulars. I walk over and introduce myself to an older couple in their 60s sitting there angrily eyeing me and a young waittress.  

    "This stupid girl just brought me a flat beer!" I look, the beer in question is not flat. It has less head than is ideal, but it is not flat. Still, I don't argue with him. "Sir, that's not her fault." I try, his wife cuts me off. "Yes, it is. Anybody with eyes can see this beer is flat. If it's flat, she shouldn't have brought it!" Again. Beer? Not flat.

    I try a different tactic. "I am the bartender here, ma'am. If you blame anybody, blame me." Her husband gives me a smarmy, condescending-without-a-word kind of look. "Well, now we're getting somewhere. Why'd you pour me a flat beer?" I finally get to explain. "I'm sorry sir, our tap was damaged earlier this week. I can get you a different beer, but Mac..." He looks offended, and his wife cuts him off to yell at me. "What, you haven't fixed it? What kind of restaurant is this?"

    I try to explain the manager is in her 70s and home sick, but the server makes the mistake of trying to take back the beer the old man didn't want. The Karen slaps her hand, and her husband glares at the young woman. "I didn't say you could take that back! Go play on your phone."

    I glare at these two, realise they haven't gotten any food yet, just a beer they didn't want, and realise how much easier it'll be to do the only appropriate thing. "Ma'am, you can't be striking servers. I am going to have to ask you to leave." She stares at me slack-jawed, like she's shocked she's being kicked out for a literal slap on the wrist. Well, hand, but still.

    "It was just a tap!" She insists, her husband hating at me with his hating eyes. "No. I'm not moving. Get me your manager."

    I try again to tell them the manager is sick, so I am acting manager. He cuts me off.

    "Get her on the phone, then. I'm not leaving until..."

    I cut him off. "...The police arrive? Because if I'm calling anybody, it'll be them. Don't worry, though. It's a misdemeanour."

    He leaves immediately. I return to find a line of inpatient, but understanding customers.  

    2,742 votes
  • 5
    2,862 VOTES

    'We Don't Care About Reservations'

    Posted by Redditor u/cammm_ebc:

    So last night was probably the busiest night we’ve had for last week. I’m a waitress at an upscale steakhouse restaurant.

    The hostesses up front put us at an hour-long wait for walk-ins because of so many booked reservations, which is usual protocol from the GM. Well, this particular couple had me FUMING beyond belief during our peak hour of the night.

    The front lobby is packed with guests waiting for a table while reservations are seated as soon as possible. The hostesses have a system on an iPad to let all managers know which guest is seated where, how long they’ve stayed, etc.

    I’m bussing a table at my section when I overhear one of the hostesses try to speak to a pair at my section a booth over. This couple walked in to the restaurant, saw the amount of people waiting for a table, and decided to seat themselves with NO reservation. They also sat at a dirty table, and here I’m thinkingm “Are these people for real?”

    This is what I got between hostess and the older man sitting down with his wife(?):

    “Excuse me sir? You didn’t come up to the host stand in order for us to found out what reservation you had?”

    “We don’t have reservations. Someone needs to clean this up,” pointing at the messy table.

    “I’m sorry sir, but if you don’t have a reservation the wait is going to be an hour long. Someone has already requested this booth by the fireplace and they need to be seated.”

    “We don’t care about reservations. We’re hungry and we’re going to eat. Get someone to clean our table! I’m not asking a third time!”

    After that failure, the hostess looked at me pretty shaken up. She never dealt with any guests THAT rude and upfront before so it was understandable. With my Latina blood boiling, I went over.

    “This is my section, and after hearing that conversation, you both have no right to be served. There’s a family waiting for this table, and I’m going to ask you to leave. Unless you want me to get a manager to escort you out.”

    The couple squaked at me demanding I get them drinks while I went straight to my GM who saw what had already happened with the hostess. They were escorted out and were told they weren’t welcome back.

    2,862 votes
  • 6
    2,131 VOTES

    Family Of 10 Walks In Before Closing

    Posted by Redditor u/lrangel1:

    I’ve been a waitress for my family’s small Mexican restaurant for about 6 years out of 12 it’s been open and I’ve had my fair share of waitressing horror stories, but this one really stuck with me.

    My uncle (owner) works seven days a week to run and manage his restaurant literally from 5 in the morning until 9 pm sometimes and on Sunday’s we close an hour earlier than weekdays because he likes to go home and relax or spend time with his family.

    So, one particular Sunday we had been slammed all day. We ran out of a lot of items like steak, rice, and fries, which can usually be replaced with an alternative. Either way we made it to the end of the day with no problem.

    Until... a family of ten shows up at the door. I was exhausted from the tough day and when I saw them I wanted to evaporate into thin air.

    But, they made a “valid” argument that we were technically still open and my uncle peeped his head out of the kitchen and told me to just let them in and he’ll turn the stoves on again and see what he can make them.

    Also, let me be clear that I WARNED them before they sat down that we had run out of a lot of items and the husband and some of the older kids agreed they should just go somewhere else but the wife argued that they’re already here, so they sat down.

    Also let me point out that she looked like she was already not in the best of moods, or had the best attitude to begin with.

    They looked at their menus and I brought them their drinks and everything was going fine until it was time to take their orders. It’s like they completely forgot I warned them and they asked for the things we were missing anyway... and I had to deny them one by one all the items they were listing while the wife rolled her eyes at me each time.

    I offered them the alternatives and they would complain saying they preferred steak over chicken and stuff like that and she asked if they were getting a discount because we were out of stuff and usually I would’ve said yes because I have a lot of control over stuff like that, since it’s my family’s place, but this lady was so rude and I was tired and not in the mood to be fake friendly. So I told her we don’t offer discounts for things that can be replaced with alternatives.

    She did not like that.

    They eventually got their food and let me note that it’s almost an hour after closing now and they still haven’t left. Even after they’ve finished eating they sat and talk for another 15 minutes.

    I am tired, annoyed, and I have school the next day.

    They come to the register after they’re finally done chatting and my cousin at the register charges them for their food and then they start pestering her over a discount and how we should’ve gone to the deli or a store to get them what they wanted because “the customer is always right”

    My uncle was nice enough to even let them in after we had already turned everything off to start cleaning.

    Also they left no tip and announced they’ll never come back again and were gonna tell their friends to never come here again either.

    Also guess who came back only a few months later. 

    2,131 votes