People are at their worst when they're hungry. Maybe that's why restaurant workers seem to run into so many rude customers? They deal with so much they should get an award. But, sometimes enough is enough. Some people are so rude, servers just can't deal with it. No matter how justified, going off on a customer usually ends up getting them fired.
Check out some Reddit stories about restaurant workers that told off their rude customers. Content has been edited for clarity.
A Lot To Go Through For Free Pizza
“When I was in high school, I worked at a pizza place. It wasn’t like Dominos or anything, it was a sit-down place with rides for kids. It was essentially a mini amusement park. It was a nightmare.
I had worked for like eight hours, needed a smoke, and was just having a bad day when this guy walked in and ordered a pizza. We made the pizza and sent it to him and he complained that it wasn’t what he ordered. I KNEW what he had ordered, and he was saying he had ordered something completely different. I knew he was just messing with us to get free stuff.
So my manager got involved and essentially patted this guy on the back and coo-ed him like a big baby. He said we’d make him what he totally really did order. So this jerk started making loud and snide comments, saying how stupid we all are and how we all should have respect for people who don’t ‘need to work at a pizza place.’ I shrugged it off, whatever, humanity fail for the day.
I took the pizza over to his table, which was covered in plates and napkins and other garbage he had already somehow accrued in ten minutes. There wasn’t a clear spot to set the pizza down on, and he wasn’t making any attempt to clear a spot. So I asked, ‘Where can I put this?’
This guy’s response was, ‘God, you’re so stupid, man…’ He didn’t get to finish his sentence because I threw the pizza onto him and literally went off the handle and yelled a short rant at this man’s horrified face as he tried to wipe an extra large pan pizza off of his chest and lap.
My boss asked me to not return and I happily complied. I never found out how much free stuff that guy probably got.”
Do You Even Know Where You Are?
“I was working at Boston Market that night, in the back kitchen.
A woman came up to the counter at 9:50 and we close at 10 pm. We had gotten slammed that day, so the only entrees we had left were bbq shredded chicken and meatloaf. My coworker explained to her that we were out of chicken, turkey, and ham. She then proceeded to order a quarter white meat chicken. He reminded her that we are out of chicken. So she asked for a quarter dark meat. Finally, he suggested meatloaf or a side dish meal.
She flipped out. ‘You guys are called Boston Chicken and you don’t have any chicken??’
He replied, ‘Actually they changed it to Boston Market in 1995, but if you want we can change it again to Boston Meatloaf!’
He did get fired, although it wasn’t explicitly because of this incident.”
They Got What They Asked For
“This happened to my mother’s previous coworker. She worked at a burger joint restaurant and on a busy night, this one table ordered mashed potatoes. The server told them that mashed potatoes aren’t on the menu but they have baked potatoes. They kept on insisting that they want mashed potatoes but eventually they seemed to agree that a baked potato was fine. So when the order came out so does the baked potato that they ordered. He put it down on the table and the customers went, ‘We wanted mashed potatoes!’
The server had had enough at this point and went, ‘Mashed?! You want them mashed?!?’ He raised his fist and smashed it down on the baked potato, giving the customer exactly what they asked for, mashed potatoes. The management, however, did not find this dedication to the customer very professional and let him go.”
“Back in October of last year, I had a job at Mr. Pickles where I had to wave at cars in a heavy sweaty Pickle costume. This kid from my school, who I already didn’t like, walked passed me with some girl. I waved at both of them being nice and because it was my job. He proceeded to flip me off to look like a tough guy in front of this girl. Still waving and looking at him, I said, ‘You look stupid today.’ He confronted me and started threatening me. I just responded with something like, ‘I can hurt you.’
He then swung at me and the punch did not affect me in any way due to the costume being very thick. I just started laughing for a second, then tackled him. I am a pretty scrawny kid but the weight of the costume helped. I started hitting him since I have complete control of my arms in the costume. The manager, who was my best friend’s step-dad at the time, ran outside and broke us up. I beat him up pretty badly and I didn’t have a scratch, all in a pickle costume. I got fired, which I sort of wanted anyway. I hated that job. Saw him at school the next day, everyone knows he got beat up by the pickle and he doesn’t have a clue that it was me.”
Something Doesn’t Add Up
“I used to work at a pizza place in a small town when I was a teenager. One night I took a phone order from some idiot woman. It went like this:
Me: ‘Thank you for calling [pizza place] may I take your order?’
Customer: ‘Yes, I’d like a large pizza. Half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives.’
Me: ‘Ok, did you want the toppings combined or separated?’
Customer: ‘No, I want half pepperoni, half sausage, and half black olives.’
Me: ‘Ok, so you want 1/3 pepperoni, 1/3 sausage, and 1/3 black olives?’
Customer: ‘No! I want HALF PEPPERONI, HALF SAUSAGE, and HALF BLACK OLIVES!’
Me: ‘I understand the toppings that you want, but I’m not understanding how you want us to put the toppings on your pizza. Do you want them separated by thirds? Combined together? Or do you mean put half the amount that we usually put on?’
Customer: ‘What’s so hard to understand?! I WANT…HALF…PEPPERONI…HALF…SAUSAGE…AND HALF…BLACK OLIVES!!’
Me: ‘Lady, there’s only two halves to a pizza!’
Customer: ‘I WANT TO SPEAK TO YOUR MANAGER!!!’
I got fired on the spot. It was easier for the manager to just hire another person than it was to lose a customer in a small town.
Oh, and the lady wanted the toppings divided into thirds. She told the manager the same thing and he just went with her math. The idiot also got it for free.”
No One Has Time For This
“I was working at Burger King many years ago. I was working the drive-thru register, which was close enough to the front registers that I could hear conversations. One of my co-workers was taking an order from a lady who kept asking how much her total was, and then canceling food on it and changing her mind. I guess she was trying to keep under a certain dollar amount?
Well at the Burger King I worked at, any canceled food on an order needed a manager’s password, thanks to one jerk who stole money by putting in someone’s order, telling them the total, and then canceling out the order and pocketing the money. So the manager had come by 3 or 4 times at that point. This was during dinner time, mind you, so there was a line of customers out the door waiting to order.
Finally, my co-worker pulled out a pad of paper and a calculator. He started writing this woman’s order down and totaling it out by hand. The woman asked him why he was doing that, and he told her, ‘When you make up your mind about what you want, then I’ll put it in the register.’
This ticked off the lady, so she grabbed the notebook and tried to hit my co-worker with it. He snatched it back from her and told her, ‘Get the heck out.’ My manager was only going to write him up for it since the manager agreed that the lady absolutely deserved it. But, my manager had to follow company policy so since he already had two write-ups on file, she had to fire him.”
(T) Does Being Busy Mean Nothing?
“I got admonished but not fired, although I didn’t care at the time, it was just a side gig in high school.
I was 15 and working as a hostess and working the to-go counter at a popular sports bar chain. A big college football game was on and we were slammed. Our restaurant didn’t have bussers, servers where just suppose to clean the tables themselves. I had a huge list of people waiting to get a table while I was busy answering phones, getting to-go orders ready and helping servers bus tables so I could get people sat. I was obviously busting my butt and not standing around the hostess stand acting useless.
A couple in their 50s and their late teens/young adult daughter came in wearing their sports team jerseys asking how long the wait was. It’s a football game people, no one is going to get up until the game is over but whatever. I told them it could be a while and this was how many people were in front of them. Well, they watched me like a hawk. They noticed every time I sat someone. When they came back up again and asked, ‘So where are we now?’ I miscounted and told them the wrong number. I was off by like one. The 50-year-old jerk started screaming at me about how awful I was and said something about me being the worst hostess ever. I wasn’t rude to him even though he was a grown man belittling a 15-year-old girl. I explained I made a mistake and that I would get him seated as soon as possible.
He wasn’t having it and said he was leaving. I waved him out the door and said bye and don’t let the door hit you on the way out. His Stepford Housewife looked at me appalled like I just crapped on her mansion floor. The daughter was also nasty to me, but again, her GROWN DAD CURSED OUT A 15-YEAR-OLD GIRL.
That jerk called the store and complained. I got a write up because it was ‘policy.’ I am now a successful engineer and have the utmost respect for anyone in the service/retail industries. I still can’t imagine ever treating someone like that and I think that’s a true testament to someone being a horrible person.”
“My mother was working at an upscale bar/lounge in Arlington, Virginia. She was just out of college. It was a fancy place filled with DC businessmen. It was common for large groups of men to come in and get absolutely wasted.
One night, a guy decided, after a few drinks, that it would be hilarious to untie the wrap skirt that was part of her uniform. Bad idea. My mother was furious and dumped an entire tray of drinks on his head.
She was promptly fired, but still thinks it was worth it.”
Revenge On An Ex? Worth It
“I work at a restaurant that makes burritos. A customer came in and the manager said she would take care of him. As it turned out, she had dated the guy and they had issues or whatever and had a messy breakup. This was the first time they’ve seen each other since. The dude just showed up at her job. So he started talking to her as she took him through the line. He was saying things like, ‘I still consider you a friend even after all this time,’ and other mushy stuff. She was obviously not interested. She didn’t say a word until she got to the end of the line.
She rolled the burrito and took a giant bite out of it before wrapping it in foil.
He kind of stared at her for a minute, dumbfounded. And then he asked, ‘Did you just take a bite out of my burrito?’
She said, ‘I mean, you said we were friends, right? So what’s the problem?’
He ended up emailing the GM to complain and she got fired.”
Tip Mix Up
“Someone I know was waiting tables and one night had a large table of 10(ish) people. They took up most of her section and lingered at the table for quite a while after their meal. They paid their bill and just drew a line through the tip section. She inspected the table and saw that they didn’t leave cash either.
She followed them into the parking lot and berated the man who paid the bill. She went on a whole tirade about, ‘I only get paid blah blah blah, and I need those tips to survive, and you took up my whole section all night, etc, etc, etc.’
He calmly said, ‘Let’s go back inside and talk about this,’ so they did. He walked with her back to the table, and he lifted up his plate. Two $100 bills (total $200) were left under it. He said, ‘I put this under the plate so no other diners would grab it before you could find it, but I guess you’re not getting it now,’ and he put it back in his pocket.
A manager saw the altercation and asked the man privately what the problem was. He explained and the server was fired on the spot.”
Just Another Day On The Job With Allen
“I worked at a Subway with his guy, will call him Allen.
Allen was a bit ‘out there.’ He was alright for the most part but always seemed a bit ‘off.’
One day a customer came in, a lady I nor he had ever seen before. Anyway, she ordered a meatball sub and Allen started to make it. As he started making the sub, he started talking about how he liked to eat squirrels and proceeded to describe in detail how to skin and field dress the squirrel, every gory detail, all while continuing to make her meatball sub.
As soon as he started, I kept trying to get him to go into the back and make bread. ‘Allen, go make some bread. ALLEN! Go make some bread now!’
The woman was horrified and kept saying how that was not appropriate talk while making her sandwich. Finally, she had enough and then said she wanted to talk to the manager, who at the time was not there. I finally get Allen to go into the back as I apologized to the woman and told her I would make her sandwich and it was on the house. Before I could finish making her sandwich, he came back out and gives her the number to the Regional HQ and said, and I quote, ‘Here you go and by the way when you talk to them could you do me a favor? Tell them I told them to GO EFF YOURSELF!’
I replied: ‘ALLEN FOR THE LOVE OF GOD GO MAKE SOME BREAD BECAUSE I AM PRETTY SURE IT’S GOING TO BE THE LAST TIME YOU DO IT HERE!’
Predictably, it was his last day.”
Standing Up To Management Backfired
“I was blacklisted from Sonic drive in for standing up for myself.
The store in Oak Hill was shut down and everyone was fired because the manager was busted selling pot out of the trunk of his car. I was one of the ‘dream team’ of handpicked Sonic employees selected from around the city to bring the store back up to speed.
Our new manager had the initials ‘JT’ and he was very proud of the fact that he comes from 5-star fine dining restaurant management and this was his first fast food experience. He was strict and that is ok, we were expected to be perfect, but he had a temper. One day he came in squealing his tires and as soon as he hit the front door, he was screaming and cussing. I was trying to take orders while releasing the talk button as he was cussing at employees, like reverse censoring. When I finished taking the order, I turned around to see what the issue was. I noticed the other car hop run to the back crying.
He turned to me and said, ‘…and YOU, you little idiot.’ This guy was 5’4″ and I’m 6′ and in rollerskates.
I rolled over to him and stopped a bare inch away and in a strong, clear voice I said, ‘Excuse me, SIR! I am a human being and when you speak to me, it will be with decency and respect, do you understand?!’
He replied, ‘Give me your apron.’ So, I walked out and went directly to the home office and talked to one of the executives, the son of the owner, and related how I loved my job, I had worked for nine different Sonics, won multiple awards, over the last decade and had been invited to VIP movie premiere, featured in the news with his father, the owner. I could no longer work with JT for creating a hostile work environment and asked to be reassigned back to MY store where I had been working. I was told he would call.
So he called. Turns out, JT had sold his restaurant as part of a messy divorce and invested several million dollars into the Austin Sonic association of franchise owners, becoming a full partner and part owner of almost every sonic in the city. He had me blacklisted. I can no longer work for Sonic. I tried again to get a job several years later, but I was told they couldn’t hire me still.”
It’s Not Always The Customer Who Drives You Crazy
“I flipped out on a coworker, not a customer.
I was working at a drive-in burger place. I’d been working in the grill area for almost a year and we just got this brand new ‘kitchen manager’ guy. He was a TOTAL jerk. He was always acting like he was God’s gift to fast food and complaining that the cops broke his door down and took his weed. Anyway one day, a week after I had reported my assault (it was done by another co-worker who was soon fired, I just mention that to show that I know I wasn’t mentally stable at the time) to my GM. The kitchen manager, in the middle of the lunch rush, trapped me against the wall and was loudly yelling because the burger I had just flipped had some myoglobin leaking. The idiot thought it was blood.
I pushed him away to get back to my job, but he wasn’t wearing the right shoes. He ended up slipping and ending up on the other side of the kitchen. The current manager in charge was visiting from another store because our manager had to run an errand. She had it out for me ever since she used to work with me. She told me to get out, so I did. I was told the next morning I was fired for breaking company policy.”
She Didn’t Have A Chance
“I’ve only been fired once and it was completely stupid. I was working at the newly opened Papa Murphy’s Take-n-Bake pizza in my town. There was this complete jerk working there. As you may know, you can call ahead and order a pizza to be ready for pick-up. On the day in question, I answered the phone in the midst of an argument with the aforementioned jerk. She used some choice language while I was taking the order, and the customer heard it. The next day, the customer called back to complain, and the only people working were the coworker and an assistant manager who was not a big fan of me. The coworker rearranged the story so that I was the one who swore, and I got canned without even being given the opportunity to defend myself.