Bad service: “This is not Baker’s Square!!!”

Every once in a while, I am going to post brief stories about the truly horrible service I’ve experienced or witnessed in local restaurants. Feel free to send in if you have a tale to tell about exceptionally bad service. Meanwhile, here are two stories.

Not so long ago, I took my parents to a fancy downtown restaurant that is known for its home-made lemonade, its chicken entrees and its snide owner. My father complimented the waitress on the lemonade. “That is very, very good,” he said. “Do you give free refills?”

“No!” she said. “You think we serve refills for free here? This is not Baker’s Square!”

My father took this in stride — in fact, he thought it was pretty funny. Just to show that there were no hard feelings, when the waitress came back, he decided to give her some good-natured ribbing. When she asked if he would like some dessert, he said, “Thank you very much, but I think we’ll go out to Baker’s Square instead.”

“They put lard in their pies!” she snarled.

On another occasion, I was standing in line at a high-end coffeehouse in the same city. A man was at the front of the line. He ordered up an orange juice. The man behind the counter came back a few minutes later with a container of murky liquid.

“Is that orange juice fresh-squeezed?” the customer asked.

“Fresh-squeezed compared to what?” the barista replied.

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