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US waiters' worst conduct

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by kennethpollock, Apr 24, 2006.

  1. Nantucket Red

    Nantucket Red Senior member

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    Where did KP make this claim? Aus
    He didn't. I believe what he said was that he's an experienced diner. Regardless of the unfavorable reception he's been given here, I haven't seen any reason to doubt his claim.
     
  2. Aus_MD

    Aus_MD Senior member

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    He didn't. What I believe what he said was that he's an experienced diner. Regardless of the unfavorable reception he's been given here, I haven't seen any reason to doubt his claim.

    Socratic irony.

    Aus
     
  3. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    Now, there is nothing here to get upset or insulting about.

    What did those egalitarians say? Celebrate differences, I suppose.
     
  4. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    Socratic irony.

    Aus

    Maybe it's an issue of Platonic incontinence on some parts.
     
  5. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    He didn't. What I believe what he said was that he's an experienced diner. Regardless of the unfavorable reception he's been given here, I haven't seen any reason to doubt his claim.


    I am sure he is a very experienced diner, and certainly knows his way around fine dining better than I do, and most of the people on this board do. I am also sure that he is a very interesting man, and most prorably he comes off as extremly charming. but he has presented himself as the source of all knoweldge in this field and put himself in the position of facing all comers.

    dispite my ethousiastic attacks on my P, I am torn here. I find him somewhat cute - and I can't help but remember that he is basically of my parents generation, a generation where if you knew what capucino was, you were a wildly cultured and worldy person. I am sure that in Atlanta society of his generation, the handfull of trips that Mr. P made to a few European capitals made his somewhat of a world traveler and expolorer, and he has been resting on this position for 30 or 40 years, which I do find very cute. In an earlier thread, Mr. P boasted of his "X" number of trips across the Atlantic, as though it was a 6 digit number, when, if I remember correctly, it was in the low 2 digits. what has happened to Mr. P is that, when he started out in this "area of expertise" he was in a vastly different reality, and he apperently hasn't been able to adjust.


    that said - I think I am pulling out of this thread after this post, where as I would not want to be a waiter in a resteraunt that Mr. P frequents, I do get the feeling that this is getting too brutal, and after all Mr. P's motivation is simply to provide all of us with what he considers (and many of us would agree) is a better dining experience.
     
  6. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    This practice is a matter of custom in Japan, but the person greeting the customer is never a manager and is always dressed in a uniform of some sort to distinguish them as someone performing a comparatively menial service. Their job is classified as uketsuke, which basically means "reception," though its use is somewhat broader than the equivalent English. These people are very helpful and often streamline processes for you and help you save time.

    Following custom and common practice, the uketsuke and waitstaff at restaurants will always speak using the politest forms of language in all circumstances. This would be equivalent in English to saying "would you care for [such and such]" instead of "do you want [such and such]," but the degree of complexity and sophistication has no English equivalent, and even the difference between "vous" and "tu" in French does not even begin to compare.

    At any rate, in Japan you will never be addressed by anyone provding service in a mode of language that might suggest familiarity. You are under no obligation to reciprocate the polite language, but I almost always do.



    not speaking japanese I had to go with what I had been told about these people. as far as I knew, they could have been placed there to smilingly curse at the Gajin for the entertainment of the crowd[​IMG] but they seemed to streamline things.
     
  7. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    Everybody ready for their French test?

    Translate into French, making sure this text will be understood by all Francophones throughout the world:

    ETIQUETTE LESSONS SERVED OVER SPAGHETTI

    When Jill Novy had the good fortune to be offered a free lunch and manners lesson for her second graders, she didn't hesitate to accept. Kevin Anolick, the father of twins in her class at Kyrene de la Colina Elementary School in Phoenix, Arizona, was the owner of Ruffino Italian Cuisine, and he suggested that a mealtime visit would be the perfect opportunity to review good manners.

    Approximately 50 students from the second-grade classes of Novy and Laura Revenew, and a few parent chaperones, loaded onto a bus one morning for a trip to the restaurant. When they arrived, the wait staff seated each child, and Anolick gave a brief lesson on manners.

    "Kevin explained how gentlemen help ladies with their chairs, that customers put their napkins on their laps, what is an acceptable noise level, how each utensil is used, the correct way to pass a dish, and how to request something from the wait staff," recalled Novy. "After that, small groups of children were taken back into the kitchen to see how the chef works and how a kitchen runs. The kids were even shown how homemade pasta is made.

    Lunch was served with a menu of bread, soup, spaghetti, and Italian ice. The wait staff treated the students with the respect afforded paying customers. At the end of the lunch, Anolick escorted the students to the bus, where he led them in a round of "On Top of Spaghetti." "He is a very fun guy!" Novy remarked.

    "The students loved it!" she said. "Follow-up discussion in the classroom reiterated quite clearly the manners and behaviors that were learned and why. We talked about practicing them at home that night. We carried the learned manners and considerations into the cafeteria. Throughout the year, when class party situations arose, we all had a common background of knowledge from which to draw regarding polite behavior."
     
  8. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    Same here - some friends and I went to a Japanese place and the couple sitting near us stood up and left about 20 pieces of fresh (and very good, I soon found out) sushi there to be tossed in the trash. We were all disgusted at their wastefulness. Why order it in the first place, and don't you at least have a neighborhood cat or something?

    Then they got in their 20MPG Subaru granolamobile and drove off...


    We witnessed almost the same scene at a Japanese restaurant, I assumed they hadn't liked their meal.

    Portions in America are also often daunting, hence the issue with leftovers. Not so in Europe in general.
     
  9. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    we had this discussion a year ago - there were very good reasons why people from different places, in history, have used certain langauges, like french, as their court language. 2006 Atlanta is not such a situation.

    I have several friends who are professors of French at a university, and even though they are not all native speakers (most of them are not), they used to go out every Friday night and spoke only French, mainly for practice, even if I (the one native speaker, until we finally got new blood when two Canadians were hired) was not present. It naturally progressed that they stuck to French if they saw each other in the halls. If you don't practice your foreign languages, you lose them. It feels desperate at times. Now, mind you, I'm not applauding anyone using their knowledge of French to impress others.
     
  10. JBZ

    JBZ Senior member

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    Portions in America are also often daunting, hence the issue with leftovers. Not so in Europe in general.

    I completely agree with this. For some reason, many restaurants feel the need to give you heaps of food (presumably so no one will complain about overpaying for meager portions). In some instances, your dinner is served on a platter, rather than a plate. It's no wonder the U.S. has an obesity problem.

    It does depend on the restaurant. Not all of them have succumbed to this practice (either that, or I'm just getting used to it).
     
  11. whoopee

    whoopee Senior member

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    Are you a nutritionist? Do you have experience with calorimeters? Have you worked in kitchens?

    Health aristocrat.
     
  12. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    I have several friends who are professors of French at a university, and even though they are not all native speakers (most of them are not), they used to go out every Friday night and spoke only French, mainly for practice, even if I (the one native speaker, until we finally got new blood when two Canadians were hired) was not present. It naturally progressed that they stuck to French if they saw each other in the halls. If you don't practice your foreign languages, you lose them. It feels desperate at times. Now, mind you, I'm not applauding anyone using their knowledge of French to impress others.


    to me this is an issue like cowboy boots, it is a border line aesthetics issue. at the time, I understood the tone of the post as "we are so sophisticated, we even bring our own glasses to resteraunts and speak amoungst ourselves in French". I may have misunderstood, but as the previous post also went on for 20 pages or so discussing this, I believe that I did understand.

    if what had been said was "I am proud at having been able to achieve a good level of this language, and some friends and myself meet once a week to practice, in order not to forget it" to me it would be entirly different.

    my wife and I often speak hebrew between ourselves, which is neither of our first language, and not the language of where we live. my wife speaks spanish with several friends who are imigrants, and with one friend who is of porto rican descent, who wishes to practice her spanish, even though they all live in america. we encourage my son to speak spanish with some people in town who are spanish speakers, and I have often addressed resteraunt staff in spanish, here in ny. many indians, in india, speak english between themselves as they find it a good lingua franca. there are plenty of good reasons to speak a language, and a few bad ones.
     
  13. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    I completely agree with this. For some reason, many restaurants feel the need to give you heaps of food (presumably so no one will complain about overpaying for meager portions). In some instances, your dinner is served on a platter, rather than a plate. It's no wonder the U.S. has an obesity problem.

    It does depend on the restaurant. Not all of them have succumbed to this practice (either that, or I'm just getting used to it).


    can;t argue with that.

    I hate that, espectially in italian resteraunts, where you really can't just get a little antipasti, pasta and a small portion of meat.
     
  14. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim Senior member

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    Random tangent:

    When I call a "customer service" number and they answer the phone over in India, they make up some non-Indian sounding name like Darius, Ashe, Sunny, or Charlie. I know that this probably (90% sure) isn't their real name, but I don't know why they do this. Is it to prevent Americans from becoming pissed off at the outsourcing of our jobs? Or just to make us feel more comfortable?
     
  15. JBZ

    JBZ Senior member

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    Are you a nutritionist? Do you have experience with calorimeters? Have you worked in kitchens?

    Health aristocrat.


    Assuming this was directed at me, and given the tone of your response, I apologize if I have somehow offended you.

    No, I am not a nutritionist, nor did I ever claim to be. I have also never worked in a kitchen other than my own. The statement, "no wonder the U.S. has an obesity problem," was more of a throw away than anything else.

    I have had personal experience with being fat, however. I worked very hard to lose the weight, and the number one way I did this was by (surprise!) eating less. This experience has made me particularly sensitive to meal portions, and I have definitely noticed that many restaurants I have eaten at in the U.S. serve large portions. I don't think I have to be a professional nutritionist to come to the conclusion that an 18 ounce steak contains significantly more calories than a 10 ounce steak. This is the only point I was trying to make. I think there are others here who would agree with it.

    Once again, I apologize if I offended you in some way.
     
  16. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    Random tangent:

    When I call a "customer service" number and they answer the phone over in India, they make up some non-Indian sounding name like Darius, Ashe, Sunny, or Charlie. I know that this probably (90% sure) isn't their real name, but I don't know why they do this. Is it to prevent Americans from becoming pissed off at the outsourcing of our jobs? Or just to make us feel more comfortable?


    yes and yes would be my guess. Same thing is happening in France, with employees answering phones out of Tunisia. They pick people with French accents, and instruct them to pretend they are somewhere in Paris. The employees even have to brush up on Paris weather in case the subject comes up.
     
  17. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    JBZ, I'm almost certain Whoopee was joking.
     
  18. whoopee

    whoopee Senior member

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    Yes JBZ I was joking. I really should use emoticons. Sorry to put you through the process of writing that longish post.

    And I agree completely with what you've posted.
     
  19. JBZ

    JBZ Senior member

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    JBZ, I'm almost certain Whoopee was joking.

    Upon second look at his post, I think you're right. I didn't notice the statement "Health Aristocrat" when I first read it.

    At any rate, whoopee, I apologize. This is just another reminder that I shouldn't try to function before drinking any coffee in the morning.
     
  20. JBZ

    JBZ Senior member

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    Yes JBZ I was joking. I really should use emoticons. Sorry to put you through the process of writing that longish post.

    Cool. In my defense, I was up at 4:00 am feeding my 3 month old. That kid eats and eats. For some reason, he gets really offended when I tell him my name before giving him his bottle. [​IMG]
     

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