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The waitress test

(48 Posts)
DeeJayYouth Sat 11-Jan-14 09:41:59

What is this, exactly?

chateauferret Sat 11-Jan-14 09:44:16

Is this not the idea that a person who acts high-handedly and rudely towards waiters, porters, shop staff etc. is likely to be a twat in numerous other ways too? A red flag.

DeeJayYouth Sat 11-Jan-14 09:44:32

Sorry - pressed post too soon.

I just read the waitress test being mentioned a few times on this board in relation to red flags in new relationships and just wondered what this is?

My best friend is in a fairly new relationship and none of us (her girlfriends) is sure about this guy but just cant put our fingers on the reason why.


Catkinsthecatinthehat Sat 11-Jan-14 09:45:15

It's judging someone by how they treat people they think aren't in a position to answer back and/or are 'beneath' them - waitresses, shop assistants, junior admin staff etc

I think it's a very good way to assess character.

KouignAmann Sat 11-Jan-14 09:47:02

Shiny new man or woman takes you out to dinner and is on his/her best behaviour to impress you. But during the meal he/she is gratuitously rude to the waiter. RED FLAG! How people treat those who serve them is an indicator of their values. Easy really

Catkinsthecatinthehat Sat 11-Jan-14 09:52:32

Although of course someone can be wonderful in public and a monster behind closed doors, so it's not a 100% reliable test, but true character does tend to 'leech out' in waitress situations.

Honestly, does anyone know someone who fails the waitress test who isn't a complete arse in other areas of life?

peking Sat 11-Jan-14 09:53:53

My DP fails the waitress test as he is terrified of talking to them.

What does that say about us? blush

ThursdayLast Sat 11-Jan-14 09:55:23

Peking, that is not a fail!
I'd rather someone didn't talk than be rude!

PPaka Sat 11-Jan-14 09:55:26

This isn't fail safe
My H could be v charming to certain female waitresses
But utterly obnoxious to some M and F

peking Sat 11-Jan-14 09:57:14

He sometimes comes across as rude because he is shy.

I shout at him in front of the serving staff and then they think we are bonkers grin

We're going out to lunch today. I'll leave him to it this time and report back.

ThursdayLast Sat 11-Jan-14 10:00:15

Hahahaha! I look forward to hearing about it!
Seriously though, 'coming across' as rude is not the same as actually being a prick to waiting staff.
Experienced waitresses know the difference! (And we LOVE bonkers wink)

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 11-Jan-14 10:01:45

I thought it was either being rude / dismissive or a bit of a lech

OBehaveMaeve Sat 11-Jan-14 10:04:32

agree with Ppaka

The red flag (early on) for me should have been how he talked about female colleagues who were on his level, or above. Or, if the plumber challenged how he'd calculated a payment. Or, how he treated a man his own age who was delivering groceries for tesco, or a man of a 'similar status' in his own mind who over took him! or, how he reacted to an unattractive older but confident woman. That really used to confuse my poor x. Lol. An unattractive but older woman having confidence?? confused he imploded. syntax error. [sigh] it was all so obvious.

But yes, if you think of it as the waitress test but not limited to how he talks to a pretty young waitress, then it's good to have your eyes wide open.

OBehaveMaeve Sat 11-Jan-14 10:05:51

eg, my x would have been so charming to a young pretty waitress. The test would have been if say she'd returned to the table to tell him his card had been declined or something like that!

LEMoncehadacatcalledSANTA Sat 11-Jan-14 10:11:18

My BIL definately fails the waitress/waiter test - I have been out to dinner with him twice, never again - he called the owner of a cafe a "good boy" because he brought us an additional chair over blush but worse than that was when we had gone to the local indian restuarant and he called the waiter abdul angry Luckily DP and myself have been going there for years and the guy said to me "hes a bit of a wanker isn't he" to which i replied, "oh yes". BIL never used to be like this - but he gets more obnoxious and ignorant with time and DP and myself avoid his company at all costs nowadays.

LEMoncehadacatcalledSANTA Sat 11-Jan-14 10:12:48

My cousin is a waitress and she often has stories about rude customers. The best one i think was the woman who complained loudly that she had rested her breast on her husband's shoulder as she set out the dinner grin

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 11-Jan-14 11:17:40

Dickheads.... let's give them their correct psychological moniker... derive their self-esteem from making others feel bad. They see themselves as deserving of special treatment. Mistakes or bad luck are the fault of others who are 'out to get them'. That's the waitress test to me. Not whether they complain - dammit, my current bf thought I was awesome because I sent back a corked bottle of wine on our first date! -but how they handle it with someone who is not in a position to answer back. Because one day... the person getting the blame will be you!

Lazyjaney Sat 11-Jan-14 14:11:19

Another test - how do they treat animals? Don't have to go gaga, but cruelty is a big flag.

brokenhearted55a Sat 11-Jan-14 14:39:41


I cant stand dogs and cats and pets. Hair everywhere etc.

doesnt mean its a red flag. I would never harm am animal it only means I wouldn't want one in my house.

Either you're into pets or you are not.

MrsSchadenfreude Sat 11-Jan-14 14:45:11

I do a lot of recruitment for our office and we have two additional "tests" for candidates. The first is how they treat the receptionist, and the second is how they treat the person who brings them upstairs for the interview. If they fail at both of these, they don't get the job. The young man who treated me as some half witted old fool as I escorted him to the interview room got a nice surprise when he discovered that I was chairing the panel. grin

MrsCharlesBrandon Sat 11-Jan-14 14:48:05

MIL would fail the waitress test. She's getting worse as she gets older too.

123Jump Sat 11-Jan-14 14:50:27

Not liking animals isn't cruel though, is it?Lazyjaney points out that it doesn't include someone not keen on pets, but does include people who are cruel to pets.
I know a woman that is rude to waiting staff etc. She is an arse, and completely without any social skills.

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 15:43:28

If the man is too nice to the young female waitress it's probably not a good sign either.
As is being too nice to the young male waiter. wink

I think it relates in general to how they treat people who do things for them. Are they polite, generous, civil, understanding, or are they rude, tight, aggressive, dismissive?

The waitress specific situation may not be a great indicator because some people are shy, but we don't often see possible partners dealing with people that work for them.

Alternatives may be to ask them to teach you something that requires patience. Or work on a common project with them leading.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 11-Jan-14 15:51:05

You've just reminded me Lweji... a work colleague once brought her new fiance along to Ladies' Pool Night. We were all having a great time playing, drinking, having a laugh & cheering each other on. She stepped up with the cue and this bloke turned into something between a Drill Sergeant & a Complete Cock...

'Not like that like this!'
'Aim here not there!'
'You'll never hit anything holding it like that!'

How he left without an eight-ball rammed up his arse, I'll never know. And she still went on to marry him the silly cow.

isitnormal Sat 11-Jan-14 15:58:03

My ex P was so unpleasant to a waitress once that the restaurant manager sent her home early, she was so distraught.

He's an ex for a reason.

SanityClause Sat 11-Jan-14 16:07:58

The point is, it's a red flag, i.e. a warning.

It doesn't necessarily mean they are an arse, as in the example of someone who is a bit socially inept, but doesn't mean to be rude.

But its worth noticing, in that first flush of lust, when they are still being lovely to you.

Meerka Sat 11-Jan-14 16:18:11

Also keep an eye on how they handle disagreement with others (that they aren't in love with). Do they get angry, or not?

Also, what exactly do they get angry about? and how do they handle it when they are angry? Very revealing, both those

KouignAmann Sat 11-Jan-14 16:36:37

MrsS That sounds cunning! I assess a lot of students and they don't know that we ask our staff whether they pull their weight with washing up cups and loading the dishwasherdishwasher in the coffee room. It shows whether they are a team player and considerate. The ones who expect to be waited on are a bit entitled!

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 11-Jan-14 16:50:02

When I was bartending as a student, I saw someone fail the waitress test in under 10 seconds.

"Oi! Fucker! Pint of Bass anna white wine!". Her date got up and sidled out, having chosen manners over what I must admit were really impressive...yes, well.

Essex of course.

captainmummy Sat 11-Jan-14 17:19:08

Disgrace - 'her' date? This was from a woman? Impressive, yes. hmm
I suppose it can come from women as well, just not so usual.

arthriticfingers Sat 11-Jan-14 17:29:29

I am not sure the above is an example is failing the waitress test - more of being a dysfunctional person (of whatever geographical origin)
The waitress test is failed by totally charming people who function perfectly well socially - but see and treat 'some' others as inferior and treat them with contempt.

WallyBantersJunkBox Sat 11-Jan-14 18:02:28

My father would have been totally charming and creepingly flirty with waitresses, and a joke cracking all round good guy with waiters and barmen.

It was just in the confines of his wife and children he was a rude belittling violent twat.

A woman I didn't know and I had guest tickets for a band in a posh club (because we knew different members of the band). She asked the waitress for a coffee and it arrived with one of those little carton things of milk. 'I WANT A MILK JUG,' she said. The waitress said they didn't have jugs. 'What are you talking about? Other tables have jugs' (they didn't) 'Go back and find me a jug NOW!' The waitress was really young and I felt so sorry for her. I tried to calm things down and failed miserably because the next thing I knew, the woman had ripped off the top of the little carton and poured it over the waitress's feet. I was mortified.

SomethingkindaOod Sat 11-Jan-14 18:06:39

I worked in bars and one restaurant and saw the waitress test fail many many times, mostly by people who didn't know I was the manager grin
Anybody who clicks their fingers for a waitress is an arse. Anybody who speaks to the staff like they are dirt on their shoes is generally a total pig with no social skills and very few actual friends.

Hmm. I'm not so convinced about the waitress test. Obviously, if someone fails it, that's it, and you should get the hell away from them asap. But my ex passed the test with flying colours. He was always so charming, over polite and friendly with waiters/waitresses/bar staff. But he was horribly emotionally and verbally abusive in private. It was all about showing what a GREAT guy he was in public. So I'm not sure you can rule someone out just on the basis of how they treat restaurant staff.

I actually think my ex treated staff so nicely as he was, in his head, patronising them. Like he was deigning to treat them as human beings, because he didn't actually seem them as such, if that makes sense!

Woe betide anyone who he had to speak to on the phone though. I was constantly astounded by how utterly horribly he would speak to people in call centres when he had a complaint or query they couldn't answer. Sometimes he would literally scream at them, and would tie them up in knots just so he could enjoy complaining about them to their managers.

Sorry, the above should say - I'm not sure you can rule someone IN on the basis of how they treat restaurant staff!

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 18:44:40

The waitress test is failed by totally charming people who function perfectly well socially - but see and treat 'some' others as inferior and treat them with contempt.

The problem here is that the minute they consider you are their inferior, you'll be treated the same. It can be the time you become a SAHM.

TheDoctrineOf2014 Sat 11-Jan-14 18:50:17

It's a red flag, not a definite reason to rule someone in, Auntie.

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 18:51:59

That is another red (at least amber) flag. Being too charming. Maybe not enough to dump, but certainly to keep your eyes open.

DisgraceToTheYChromosome Sat 11-Jan-14 18:56:53


That was the only time I've ever seen a woman behave that rudely sober. It was usually men, and they were worse. The most extreme were a pair of twats who promised to break my legs for not calling them "sir".

Two days later they were in the paper, having been set upon in the Horse and Well* up the road by "mystery assailants".

*Epping borders; nearly as dangerous as Ordsall.

lovemenot Sat 11-Jan-14 19:26:49

My h has failed the waitress test several times. One time, I had ordered desert and it took some time to arrive. So he called the waitress (I would have been perfectly capable of doing that myself but he always wants to sit facing the direction the staff come from - another flag?) and asked where my desert was. And then proceeded to continually stare her out of it until she brought the desert. Poor girl was shaking by then. And then, the gobshite gloated about it!

But it can be a good sign of future behaviour as just as he intimidated her that day, he is now doing the same thing to me.

Maeve789 Sat 11-Jan-14 19:29:40

Fruitbat, oh yes, exactly, my x to the letter there....
And as lweji says, i was devalued the moment i had a baby. ( his hmm )

PurpleSprout Sat 11-Jan-14 19:40:07

I think it's a pretty good test to be fair. We have a family member who is extremely self-important / egotistical. It's not immediately apparent (can be exceedingly charming) but I have never seen him treat service workers with anything less than disdain.

Expects 5 star service in a 3 star establishment and would bellow at a 16 year old girl on a Saturday job to get it. Horrible behaviour.

Different from being assertive though. My parents get mortified when I send back stuff that is wrong / shit, even if I'm nice about it. I find this frankly bizarre. (Actually I'm always nice about it, but did have to get quite assertive with the waitress who was insistent I asked for a carafe of house cabernet when I asked for a specific white wine by name. I was having Dover sole FFS & the woman was shrieking at me about the cost of my mistake and putting it on the bill. Mother practically crawled under the table in embarrassment even though in that case waitress was being rude to me a fucking loon.).

Fraggletits Sat 11-Jan-14 19:41:12

Mine bends over backwards to be nice to waiters/waitresses/shop people, everyone in fact and yet he is a totally abusive twat behind closed doors.

Listening to them talk about people behind their backs is more of a red flag IMO. H doesn't respect anyone.

SunshineOnACrappyDay Sat 11-Jan-14 19:56:35

One XBF was absolutely crap to waitresses. I should have bailed early.

Conversely, my abusive XH was as nice as pie to everyone - except me.

CCTVmum Sat 11-Jan-14 20:16:02

waitress is just a metophor for any female and anyone they see not as important. Seeing if they slip and show their hatred of women. Mind you they usually show it when they have some control over the woman ie vulnerable with their baby like Maeve described!

arthriticfingers Sat 11-Jan-14 20:21:21

Yes, the clue is always is the fact that the contempt is reserved for those that they believe they control and who should do their bidding never to their liking, though.

Lweji Sat 11-Jan-14 23:10:11

It works for friends too.

I have recently gone cold on a recent friendship for talking badly about people behind their backs. The last drop was about a good friend, who is in an abusive relationship. Total lack of empathy and really putting her down.
Big mistake, because the friend she was putting down is a real sweetie, very generous, caring and my son's godmother too. It looked like she was trying to isolate me from other friends and I was already fed up at her childish behaviour.

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