No Smoothie for You

Customer service can go either way, a great group of customers with questionable servers, or sometimes a service worker with incredibly obtuse customers. Everybody has their moments.

I’m really busy not waiting tables, so could you hurry up and order?

We once went to eat at a new vegan place in Toronto. There weren’t any vegan places back home on PEI back then so we were really excited to try this place. It had a good reputation and had been recommended highly to us.

We were there for brunch and it was a slow one for the restaurant. There were a couple of people at the bar, four of us at one table, and a deuce that sat down shortly after we arrived. The server had dropped menus to us promptly. She wasn’t super friendly but that’s okay.

She came back pretty quickly and asked if we would like a drink. Smoothies were their specialty so we were discussing that. One of our group said to the server that she couldn’t decide between two of the smoothies. The server sighed, looked at our friend, and said, “Well, hurry up and make a decision I have better things I could be doing.” And then she walked back to the bar and started chatting with the other server.


The table that sat down after we did promptly closed their menus and left.

I know serving can be a hard job; some of us really weren’t cut out for it.

We didn’t think we needed to include tech support for the manual appliances…

A friend shared this story with me:

I spent a few summers working remotely from home as front desk staff for a hotel chain. Guests could call us to make reservations, complain, ask for restaurant suggestions, etc. The hotel was set up as suites that had kitchens, equipped with dishes, pots, pans, and all the bits and bobs that you might need to make a meal.

One night, around 10pm the phone rang. After my usual greeting, the guest chimed in with, “I really don’t know how to work this can opener. I have been trying for about 10 minutes and I can’t figure it out.”

It was all I could do not to burst out laughing. Instead I calmly asked him what the can opener looked like.

“It’s white,” was the response. A further helpful description followed, “And from IKEA.”

With a few more questions, I figured out the type of manual can opener he was struggling with. I then started to explain to him that the opener was one that clamps on top of the can, and you turn the handle (like all can openers) to remove the lid. As I was describing how to place it, he suddenly exclaimed, “I think I’ve got it!”

He then thanked me and hung up before I could ask the real question that was running through my mind, which was, “Just how drunk are you?!”

We are hoping you can be a part of this series by submitting firsthand experiences of imperious/generous bosses, difficult/wonderful guests, and your own and others’ faux pas or feats. Please send stories to or private message on social media. Thanks to everyone for their submissions!

About Rod Weatherbie

Rod Weatherbie is a writer working in the hospitality industry. He spent a number of years in Toronto as a member of the financial press before returning to PEI. Rod has published one piece of short fiction, one book of poetry, and has had work published in Red Shift, the Antigonish Review, Mitre, and the Toronto Quarterly. He has also recently co-produced, co-directed, and acted in a stage production of old television shows.

He also likes writing about food. Go figure.

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