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What's your funniest/worst/most embarrassing restaurant experience?


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OK - I see that there are already several kid stories here, but I've just got to add mine. One lovely Sunday afternoon in the summer hubby, me and two kids headed for a ride to the Jersey Shore. Son was about 5- daughter about 3. Daughter seemed a little "off" that morning, but nothing I could quite put my finger on (you moms out there know what I mean). Anyways, after strolling on the boardwalk and having some cotton candy and zeppoles, we settle into a family diner for dinner and are seated at a booth. Said daughter is in a booster seat, but seems to be getting ansy. Before dinner arrives I pick her up and am holding her chest to chest so that she is facing the booth in back of me (you know where I'm going with this, right?). As I feel the rumble in her belly start and I turn to look at her, she is spewing forth the most vile concoction of digested pink cotton candy and zeppoles on the back of the gentlemen that is sitting behind me. I say gentlemen here literally. He was the nicest man I have ever met in my life. He simply took off his shirt and sat for the rest of his meal in his undershirt. Not once did he seem upset or raise his voice. Hubby and I paid for their dinner. I would have paid off the mortgage on his house if I could have. Daughter was fine after spewing, and even blew him kisses.

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OK - I see that there are already several kid stories here, but I've just got to add mine.  One lovely Sunday afternoon in the summer hubby, me and two kids headed for a ride to the Jersey Shore.  Son was about 5- daughter about 3.  Daughter seemed a little "off" that morning, but nothing I could quite put my finger on (you moms out there know what I mean).  Anyways, after strolling on the boardwalk and having some cotton candy and zeppoles, we settle into a family diner for dinner and are seated at a booth.  Said daughter is in a booster seat, but seems to be getting ansy.  Before dinner arrives I pick her up and am holding her chest to chest so that she is facing the booth in back of me (you know where I'm going with this, right?).  As I feel the rumble in her belly start and I turn to look at her, she is spewing forth the most vile concoction of digested pink cotton candy and zeppoles on the back of the gentlemen that is sitting behind me.  I say gentlemen here literally.  He was the nicest man I have ever met in my life.  He simply took off his shirt and sat for the rest of his meal in his undershirt.  Not once did he seem upset or raise his voice.  Hubby and I paid for their dinner.  I would have paid off the mortgage on his house if I could have.  Daughter was fine after spewing, and even blew him kisses.

I have off days like that, and I'm 61. I'll bet the gentleman had some understanding of that.

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Many years ago, I went with a friend to eat dim sum in a place we liked in Seattle. During the conversation, I had said something about being mortified in a grocery store because of a friend's pranks, and he said "why should you be? It was your friend doing it, not you." I asked what he'd do if I did something completely bizarre in public and he said "you can't embarass me." I begged to differ, but he said "Nah, anything you'd do would embarass you more."

Well, that was really the wrong thing to say, and not being the one to pass up that kind of challenge, I took an end joint of a chicken foot, placed it on my spoon, and cocked it back, aimed at no place in particular. My friend looked a bit taken aback but played cool, and said "you won't do it," and proceeded to take a steamed shrimp dumpling and put it in his mouth. I let fly. The chicken knuckle did fly near an overly-hairsprayed beehive of a hairdo but unfortunately I can't report that it lodged there, or even made contact.

Ah, but my friend...he has a very "explosive" sudden laugh, and the newly-inserted shrimp dumpling came back out rather...explosively, like those old pop guns...rickocheting off the corner of the table and about a yard behind us onto the floor, where a waitress was approaching with a cart of offerings. She looked at him, sitting there with a red face looking completly mortified, and sympathetically, said, "oh...you don' like it?"

"Los Angeles is the only city in the world where there are two separate lines at holy communion. One line is for the regular body of Christ. One line is for the fat-free body of Christ. Our Lady of Malibu Beach serves a great free-range body of Christ over angel-hair pasta."

-Lea de Laria

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When I graduated and started my first real job, I was able to sign up and take candidates out for dinner at nice Seattle restaurants -- places that I normally didn't end up with what I was earning.

So we're someplace that served Chinese bbq pork as an app. We ordered some, and I proceeded to liberally coat it in mustard and then sesame seeds. I popped it into my mouth and thought my head was about to explode. I distinctly remember asking the candidate if I was bleeding profusely out of my nose/ears/middle of forehead while frantically signaling for another beer from the wait staff.

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...My friend looked a bit taken aback but played cool, and said "you won't do it," ...

Oh dear... That's not good. As they say, Been There, Done That -- and 'Nuff Said: It involved a ceiling fan and mashed potatoes.

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My most embarrassing restaurant moments have usually involved family members telling waitstaff, loudly, how to do their jobs. God, this is mortifying. The worst was once when my mother, who has never had a service industry job in her life, decided to order a dish that consisted mainly of green peppers, without the peppers.

Needless to say, she was quite disappointed with the resulting plate of rice. Yes, the restaurant should have either subbed another vegetable, or charged less, rather than sending out a $15 plate of rice. But I had a hard time thinking it was anyone's fault but Mom's when she began a lengthy, and loud, lecture to the server by saying, "Now, let me tell you something about being a waitress." :shock:

My brother and I tried very hard to be invisible and disappear into our chairs. :unsure:

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my most embarrassing story still plays out in my mind in full glorious detail even though it happened over 15 years ago. i flew into LA latenight from London and got into the Biltmore Hotel downtown around 2am.

After a few hours of tossing and turning i was so bored that i decided to have the hotels buffet breakfast. I normally totally skip these things but on this jetlagged morning, i was there at a bright and chipper 7am. i figured maybe the coffee would make me feel like a human again.

I sat down with the sunday paper, had a couple of cups of coffee, and started to feel up to having a bite. I noticed at this stage that the entire restaurant had filled up with what seemed like one group of elderly japanese tourists. i guess they must have had an early start to their site seeing day as they were all wearing identical tour group tags.

i then went to the buffet and proceeded to load a cereal plate with a mix of cereals, a whole bunch of sliced fruit, sunflower seeds, coconut shavings. i have never before or since loaded a cereal plate with so many possibilities. I topped it off with a generous soaking of milk, and then weaved between the Japanese tourists back to my table.

You know what happened next of course. i tripped, and managed to score a full and total cereal fruit seeds hit on this elderly gentleman at the table next to mine. the guy was soaked. he had honey smacks stuck in his collar, and even had a corn flake caught in his eyeglasses (i got him from behind). I dont think i got a single drop of that cereal on the floor (or in my plate). it was a full and total hit.

the worst part is that the story isnt even at the worst part. I apologized profusely, despite his lack of english and my clear lack of japanese skills, and then his wife wiped him down with a couple of napkins while i slunk off to my seat. i couldn't pay for their breakfast (package deal) and i couldnt get their room number to send a gift. somehow the sight of a large clumsy foreign looking man was not conducive to a friendly conversation.

I sat down and waited for them to leave so i could make my exit, but he sat back down to eat his breakfast, still dripping, and with that damn honey smack still stuck in his collar. i had to endure thirty minutes of wait where i didnt have breakfast (i wasnt heading for that buffet again, the Japanese tour group would have taken refuge under the table) and i wasnt squeezing past this guys table before he left). The poor man sat through his meal of Japanes pickled fish with cereal and milk (mine) and then headed to his tour wet and sticky, at which point i finally beat a retreat to my room. i dont think ive actually eaten a hotel buffet breakfast since.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The first time I had moo shoo pork (age 16) I thought the pancakes were little wipes for your hands. I suppose they were not very good pancakse to begin with as they were kind of spongy. I've had much better moo shoo pancakes since then. Anyway, I then proceeded to wipe my hands with the pancakes. Boy did my family have a laugh!

:biggrin:

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Ok. This is really embarrassing...

So, the spring before Katrina, I went to New Orleans to visit some friends. I arrived at around 10pm, we went out, as one is wont to do in New Orleans, got shitty drunk, and arrived back at the apartment sometime around the ungodly hour of 4am. I was exhausted from driving all day and drinking all night, and just wanted to crash. When I undressed for bed, I just took of my pants and underware in one fell swoop, somehow managed to get into my pajamas and crashed.

Anyway, the next morning dawns bright and early with a TERRIBLE zydeco band playing right below my window. (Aformentioned friend lived right on Royal in the middle of it all.) Figuring, that if we couldn't beat 'em, we might as well join 'em, we all hauled our hungover selves out of bed and decided to go get brunch. The plan was, we would just wear whatever, then come back to the apartment after food to change and shower.

I rolled out of bed, put on the same jeans I was wearing the night before, threw on a random tshirt, and headed out. After we ate and drank many, many cups of life-giving coffee, we stood up to leave. As we were walking out of the restaurant, if felt this weird... buldge... right around the seat of my pants. I was like, "What the hell," and started shaking my pant leg trying to get it out. The buldge moved down my leg. The buldged moved further down my leg, and arived at my ankles, where, (remember the part about me taking of my underwear and pants in one fell swoop?), last night's forgotten underwear fell out onto the floor of the restaurant.

I stood there, with this mortified expression on my face until my host calmy said, "Amy, you might want to pick those up." I did, and as I straighted up, the busboy looked at me, shrugged, and intoned, "I've seen weirder in this town."

I got out of there as fast I as I possibly could managed and for the rest of the trip avoided the place like the plauge. If it happened to be on my route, I would take the long way around it. Oh god. That taught me a very valuable lesson: ALWAYS take your pants off seperately from you underware: you never know where they might show up!

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

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This happened to me at the bar of a restaurant, so it kind of counts. I was a the bar with a friend having a couple of drinks after work. A group of guys walk in, obviously not the first bar they have been to. Anyway, after the usual awful pick up lines and after explaining we were both happily married, they insisted on ordering us both a glass of champagne anyway. As they were leaving they told us that the drinks were on them. After arguing that they really didn't have to etc etc, they insisted and rowdily left the bar. We were done anyway and got up to leave, as we were walking out the door, a bar tender (not the one that had been serving us) comes running after us with the bill and an angry look. You can imagine how mortified we were. Not only had they not paid the bill but they had not paid for the $16 glasses of champagne either.

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"Daughter was fine after spewing, and even blew him kisses."

Beautiful! Lmao :laugh:

Don't we all wish we could blow kisses at people who caught our yuck?

Thank goodness I have no spewy-spilly type of stories to tell, but here goes:

I like wine. I am not in the economic bracket that affords long studies of wine, or sampling of expensive vintages. But I try my best to learn and to taste what I can when I can afford it.

Okay, so keep in mind I'm a vino newbie.

Two different times at restaurants with my ex, I ordered a cabernet sauvignon. Because I like white wine, and I figured it was just like a sauvignon blanc. Cuz.....well.....sauvignon!

Right.

Boy did I feel like a dork when I got a glass of red and said "but I ordered a white"

Ex was no wine-expert either, but he did like to feel superior.

Wheeee. :wacko:

~Radio7

the tall drink of water...
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not really embarassing....more like taking a preventive measure.....

I had been wanting to visit a relatively new restaurant in Atl since the place opened and finally found a night where both Fuss & I could leave relatively early fr/ work (she fr/ the hospital and I fr/ the restaurant). I called the restaurant late in the after noon to make reservations and spoke w/ the manager whom I knew but not well. We walked in to the restaurant for our reservation and as we were seated I told Fuss, "we have to leave." She looked confused and then started on the, "but you have wanted to come here.....", "we have the night off....", &c. As we were leaving a confused hostess followed us out w/ the usual apologies and questions. I told her that I would call her manager in the morning but it was nothing she had done. Fuss demanded an explanation as we got our car and I told her that just two weeks ago I had fired the waiter who was approaching our table for several reasons--among them was a report that he had done some thing to a customer's food---and I was not about to stay at the restaurant whether he waited on us or not.

I got to my restaurant the next a.m. and was about to call the manager fr/ the other place to explain the situation when my phone rang. We had a lovely dinner at his restaurant about two weeks later w/ no problems at all and no sign of the waiter in question.

HDHD

in loving memory of Mr. Squirt (1998-2004)--

the best cat ever.

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Heh. Any time I dine on soup or a saucy dish, I stand a great risk of getting at least one splatter on the front of my shirt. This might not be quite so embarrassing if the front of my shirt were not so, erm, prominent. :laugh: This propensity increases at Asian restaurants--I'm fairly decent at chopsticks, but they do seem to up the odds of getting drips on my person. Getting out of, and home from, a restaurant when your blouse has started looking like a map of various Indonesian island chains can definitely be an exercise in humility (or something). :blush:

I always feel that the splatters would be less likely to end on my shirt in the first place were the top half of my shirt area not so prominent. It's like having a shelf to catch everything that doesn't make it into my mouth! Great! :wacko:

I've loved everyone's stories here. I think my most embarassing restaurant story is one from when I was very young; I think I had just learned to walk/talk/etc. My mother reports that, as we were dining, I felt the need to wander around to another table and ask if anyone had a quarter for me. Some guy gave me a quarter and then, thinking we were so poor that this tiny kid had to beg, paid for our meals. My mother was completely horrified.

Jennie

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Absolutely hilarious, jeniac42. This somehow reminded me of an incident that happened when I was about 10 years old.

My family was having dim sum one Sunday morning. We were just finishing up when a family friend, who just arrived at the restaurant, came up to say hello. After chatting a bit, the waiter brought the check. The friend grabbed the check and offered to pay. A tug of war over who will pay the check started between my father and the friend.

"It's my treat!"

"No, you don't have to do that!"

"Don't be silly! I'll pay!"

The friend made one last attempt to take the check and turned away as if to pay. Dad, who was almost a foot taller than she practically wrestled her to the ground, grabbed the check out of her hand, and proceeded to go up to the front to pay. Mom was mortified and my brother and I were torn between being completely embarrassed and laughing ourselves silly. I don’t remember what the friend said, but it was probably something along the lines of, “why didn’t you let me pay?”

edited for grammar

Edited by I_call_the_duck (log)

Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

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It's like having a shelf to catch everything that doesn't make it into my mouth! Great! wacko.gif

I have a name for this affliction, as I am similarly cursed: Dolly Parton Shelf

As in,

"Hey, what happened to your shirt?"

"oh, just a case of Dolly Parton Shelf..."

I despaired of ever eating pho on my way to work, until analysis of surrounding diners revealed this tip: use the spoon provided. Now I swirl the noodles in the broth, lift them high out of the bowl; let them drip for a brief second; and use the spoon in my other hand to lightly cup the bottom of the noodles to act as a drip shield. The only trick is to make sure your spoon is very dry.

Now hardly anyone laughs at me anymore.

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Funnily enough, its not my shirt, but my skirt that takes the hit when eating messy foods (snarky comment from an envious 'shelf-free' poster). Thank god for napkins :wink:

Embarrassing moment - knocking over my completely full drink (ice and all), three dates in a row, same guy. I've probably only knocked over a glass 5x total. Sigh.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Ah yes, the dreaded soup-drip. I refer to this problem as "It landed on the mezzanine."

-Sounds awfully rich!

-It is! That's why I serve it with ice cream to cut the sweetness!

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My sisters and I took a pregnant friend out for brunch. My sisters had picked the place and we had a nice if boring meal. I come from a family of smartasses.....sarcasm is our first language and English our second. Anyway, we had jokingly given our server a hard time, and spotting one of those stupid feedback forms on our table had filled it out with fairly stupid answers and suggestions. When the time came to pay the bill, my sisters both had cash and I didn't, so I told them to cover the tip, and the meal was on me. I paid the bill on my debit card and we left the restaurant. As my sister was dropping us off I asked how much they had tipped, and Tammi looked at Tracey and said "I thought you left the tip!" Remember, we left that feedback form full of smartass comments on the table AND apparently stiffed our server. This was just too much for me, so I searched through my purse to see if I still had a copy of the bill.........I did and the server's name was written on the bottom. So the next day I went to the restaurant with a $10 bill in an envelope with the server's name on it. She must have thought we were such asses! :blink:

If only I'd worn looser pants....

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So we're doing a tasting menu at Manresa in Los Gatos, Cali. Its a solid 21-course set, and neither of my parents had done a tasting menu before. I kept trying to convince them to watch their intake before so they could make the whole gauntlet.

So we get up to the 8th course and its taken about 30 seconds for them to down each thusfar. The appetizer succession ends and out comes the first entree: smoked salmon with a pair of side dishes which escape me right now. My mom hates salmon, so she just let it sit there. My dad polished his off and scarfed hers, so three empty plates went back. Next comes veal cheek. "I'm not much for veal," she claims and visually leans away from it. Both my father and I decide to stick to our own plates so we can make the distance. So, the plate goes back untouched. Next comes pork belly. Now I know that shes a fan of shredded pork. Lo and behold, she doesn't even touch her fork.

"I'm already full," she claims. At this point I should probably point out that she was polishing off her second beer. The waiter comes to clear the plates and she orders another.

"I think you're filling up on beer," I suggest. She barely even hesitates. "Beer doesn't fill you up. It makes you hungrier."

:blink::blink:

I like to think that the waiter was in the kitchen laughing before he brought the next dish, and his expression upon doing so reinforced the possibility. She didn't touch another bite until the dessert courses came around.

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So we're doing a tasting menu at Manresa in Los Gatos, Cali. Its a solid 21-course set, and neither of my parents had done a tasting menu before. I kept trying to convince them to watch their intake before so they could make the whole gauntlet.

So we get up to the 8th course and its taken about 30 seconds for them to down each thusfar. The appetizer succession ends and out comes the first entree: smoked salmon with a pair of side dishes which escape me right now. My mom hates salmon, so she just let it sit there. My dad polished his off and scarfed hers, so three empty plates went back. Next comes veal cheek. "I'm not much for veal," she claims and visually leans away from it. Both my father and I decide to stick to our own plates so we can make the distance. So, the plate goes back untouched. Next comes pork belly. Now I know that shes a fan of shredded pork. Lo and behold, she doesn't even touch her fork.

"I'm already full," she claims. At this point I should probably point out that she was polishing off her second beer. The waiter comes to clear the plates and she orders another.

"I think you're filling up on beer," I suggest. She barely even hesitates. "Beer doesn't fill you up. It makes you hungrier."

  :blink:  :blink:

I like to think that the waiter was in the kitchen laughing before he brought the next dish, and his expression upon doing so reinforced the possibility. She didn't touch another bite until the dessert courses came around.

:raz:

Beer definately does not make me hungier, at least that is until 3am when I get an attack of the munchies. Having said that, it still amazes me that when at home in a restaurant, you see many people at tables downing a big pint of guinness along with their steak and chips :blink: Guinness is a meal for me!!

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This is a story from the period of time when my younger brother and I were sharing an apartment as we were attending the University of Florida back in the mid 1980's. There was a lot of potent marijuana readily available there back then (and probably still is), and of course, smoking it would give us tremendous munchies. One thing we would love to splurge on, when we had some extra cash on occasion, was to address our munchies by eating at a local barbecue restaurant located within walking distance of our apartment.

On one particular occasion, the weed must have been especially good because, once seated, my brother suddenly developed a serious case of the giggles. I was having a hard time maintaining my own composure, but some way, somehow one of us was going to have to order because we were HUNGRY!!! My brother began to try to give his order, but when the giggles just couldn't be stopped, he simply put his head down on the table. It was then that I quickly realized the burden of communicating our collective order for delicious barbecue to the waitress had fallen solely on me or else. Summoning all my inner strength, I was able to focus on the menu and deliver our order to the waitress with reasonable clarity. I don't remember what we had, but I do remember whatever it was was sublime!!!

Upon the departure of the waitress, my brother looked up and was still (semi-discretely) laughing hysterically......those were the days!

Edited by CMA (log)
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I remember being out having a meal with my family when all of us kids were young in a restaurant run by a small family that spoke little english. My brother and sister were blowing straw wrappers at one another and one of the landed in the candle our the table. We were amazed that such a small piece of paper made such a big flame. The waitress quietly walked over from another table, put the candle on her tray, and silently with no reaction on her face, took it to the kitchen and returned to the table where she had been taking an order. She never said a word but every time we returned to the restaurant, she would bring my parents menus, take the candle and walk away. :laugh:

Pamela Wilkinson

www.portlandfood.org

Life is a rush into the unknown. You can duck down and hope nothing hits you, or you can stand tall, show it your teeth and say "Dish it up, Baby, and don't skimp on the jalapeños."

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