Have you ever gone out with friends, chatted up the table and realized that the waiter is taking their sweet time to get to you? You must be thinking, “Man, this server stinks!” Little do you know, that just like bad breath wards out potential suitors, your menu etiquette, or lack thereof may be to blame.
It’s funny, even as an American, I too have to learn certain acceptable behaviors. I remember being at a restaurant with one of my best friends. We sat there, took our time randomly glancing at the menu and kept swapping stories about the horrors of high school. As I kept yapping about a cute guy named Conor May, I saw my friend giving me the stink eye. I quickly quipped, “Oh my gosh, this waiter is taking forever, right?” As I was looking for a signal of approval, she asks, “Are you ready?” I quickly responded, “yeah?!” then she annoyingly says, “then close your menu!” Baffled by her odd request I asked, “why?” Well, with that question I opened the door for a very unwelcome lecture on how for the most part, waiters will not approach a table until all menus are closed. Apparently, this is the universal signal in the food world for “Hey, I’m hungry and I’m sooo ready to order.” Much to my dismay—but proving her point—the waiter rushed to our table and said, “Well, it looks like you’re ready to order!”
See? We can all learn something about this little anecdote, are you hungry and want to be waited on? Then close your menu and stop hating on the poor server! Your friends and tummy will thank you!