I would like to make it known; I am in the Fabienne, Label King, and Kennethpollock camp, on this one.
Living in London, I can honestly say that what Mr. Pollock claims about the standard of service in European establishments, on a broad level I agree, but times are changing here too, gone are the days when you can get truly proper service even in the mediocre places. It's not to the extent to this sickly sweet, brain hammering annoying level of service that I experience Stateside, but in a different way. In a way that the Champagne-Socialists (Gauche caviar" "Limousine liberal" or "latte liberal") of this thread are likely to be with me on, they are in a more technical sense, bad servers, they don't clear plates on time, have to be called to take my order, get orders wrong. Luckily we have not got into the culture of first name greetings, lest I articulate TGIF, but that is as good as being in America anyway.
I’d also like to remind you that dining in a restaurant is not a technical experience, it is supposed to be enjoyed (by those who know how; this is why being comfortable does not come into the picture). So, with regard to the marketing argument, false.
You may take objection to the Champagne-Socialist label, which I put towards members on this thread, whom I choose not to mention, however, for this there is ample prudence. A restaurant is traditionally (and don't get on high-horses with me; I'm in my late 20s, although, of course a hard-line Tory supporter) an establishment, into which a group of people go, to enjoy fine food, and one and other's company, for the upper and middle classes, and the role of the wait staff, is to provide discreet, efficient service. I think this has been mentioned, but you are not there to make friends with the wait staff. If that was an individual's aim, perhaps an escort service is better suited to that sort of individual.
I would also like to make a disclaimer, that in 'real-life' I would not involve myself in such an argument, I would distance myself from individuals with such liberal, socialist, or champagne socialist views. However, this is the internet, and I feel that we Conservatives are in the minority, and a voice of reason has to be heard out.
I would, most of all like to make clear that I do not have objection to such service when I am in TGIF, or such and establishment. Also, when I travel to America, it can be novel at times. Perhaps such behavior suits America, and in this I am speaking out of turn, because cultural differences need to be accounted for, after all, America is a liberal land compared to Europe. Such behavior by wait staff does irritate me, but as with everything, I’m willing to put up with it when I am in America, or an American style place here.
I just hope it does not come here in a big way!