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Restaurant Red Flags To Look Out For

Reddit user FlintTheDad asked: 'What’s an immediate red flag at a restaurant?'

Group of people dining out at a restaurant
Dan Gold on Unsplash

When we think of the term "red flags," we're quick to think of red flags that might appear in a problematic or abusive relationship.

But red flags can appear in any place in our life, especially the workplace or places that consumers frequent, like big box stores and restaurants.

When it comes to restaurant red flags, these are important to note, as they could have a negative impact on a consumer's health.

Redditor FlintTheDad asked:

"What's an immediate red flag at a restaurant?"

Fair Enough

"When you see the owner breaking apart frozen chicken on the curb outback."

- Mourning-Poo

High Humidity

"High humidity inside."

- Presitigious_Gold_585

"Yes! The small that causes is unmistakable."

- TemperatureTop246

Sticky Furniture

"All of the furniture and menus are weirdly sticky..."

- Silver_Sunshine360

"I know what *some* of that is. Some furniture and cleaning solutions aren't compatible. The cleaning spray reacts with the finish on the table tops, and softens, it, which makes it feel a bit sticky, and dulls it super fast... but it's the sanitizer cleaner they use for *everything*, and they don't want to have to deal with a separate cleaner for certain surfaces."

"I used to sell commercial office furniture, and we'd run into this issue sometimes. The worst was when a company asked us to source some tables they found from a local craftsman (since we were already an approved vendor in their system, they often had us buy and deliver stuff for them). Beautiful, hand-made stuff."

"So we bought them and arranged for the delivery and placement. When we got to the site and saw where they wanted them, I cringed... I knew the tables were finished in shellac, and they were having us put them in their lounge area, where I knew they often had events with drinks."

"Shellac dissolves in alcohol. Spilling a drink on it can ruin the finish. Before we left, I left a note on the tables about being careful and emailed the client some care tips. The NEXT DAY they sent us pictures of the ruined finish, asking, 'What is wrong with our tables?!'"

- NecroJoe

Sounds Fishy

"A seafood restaurant should NOT smell fishy."

- turtyurt

"And conversely, a seafood MARKET that does not smell fishy is indeed fishy."

- FourMeterRabbit

A Specific Smell

"That *smell.*"

"You know the one. floors feel a little slippery/slimy underfoot and it smells like they've been mopping the place with the same dirty mop and bucket water for weeks."

"This isn't something you're likely to see in a nice place but I've encountered it in more fast-casual dining places than I care to remember."

- y2knole

"THAT smell. It always reminds me of yeast rolls. I guess it's bacteria in the mop water that has been setting in that bucket for three days."

- SpeelingChamp

Restroom Cleanliness

"Dirty restrooms."

- carboncanyondesign

"This is a dead giveaway. If they can't keep part of the restaurant that the public DOES see clean, you can imagine how the non-public facing parts look."

- OkaySureBye

"Health inspector here. The key is to look for build-up that looks like it's been there more than a day. Most places don't have bathroom attendants and it's unrealistic to expect public bathrooms to be spotless every minute of the day."

- Vives_solo_una_vez

The Right Audience

"Whenever I have friends come to visit me in Osaka and they're dying to try some authentic ramen. My goto line is:"

"'Look for the most run-down looking, back ally shack you can, the more run-down looking; the better. Guaranteed It'll be the best ramen you'll ever have!'"

"And to anyone who happens to read this, no, Ichiran is NOT the best reman joint. It's nice don't get me wrong but please ask around, research ramen in the area you're visiting, I guarantee you there's SO much better out there!"

- kevo998

"I look for people of that ethnicity eating there. Mexican restaurant with only white people? It might be good. Mexican restaurant with Mexicans wearing high-vis shirts? S**t's going be fire. Bonus points if there’s a grocery store attached."

"The same thing goes for Asian restaurants sans the high-vis shirts."

- PsychoticMessiah

Too Many Variables

"A huge menu."

- dnb_4eva

"A huge VARIED menu."

"Places like Chinese, Mexican, and Indian restaurants generally have large menus, but most items use the same base ingredients."

"It's the places that try to incorporate lots of wildly different dishes that you want to avoid."

- MagnusPI

Unexpected Restaurant Guests

"A raccoon falling through the ceiling tiles. 1:00 AM, drunk as h**l, looking for something to eat, and I found a dive that was still open. I ordered my food, and while waiting for my order, a raccoon fell from the ceiling."

"The waitress ran to the back screaming. The cook came out armed with a cleaver and chased it into the kitchen. The look on his face was like it had happened before. Other people eating there were in shock and got up and left."

"Mystery meat: the new special. Get me the f**k out of there."

- alwaystired707

That Wait Time

"I immediately look to see if there is anyone actually eating. If there are a half dozen tables with no food on them, and people looking anxiously to the kitchen, I'm out."

- scotttr3b

Cleaning Response Time

"Multiple dirty tables that haven’t been cleared. If the restaurant isn’t crowded, staff should have time to clean them. If it is crowded, staff should be trying to turn tables over quickly."

"Dirty tables mean they are either severely understaffed or the staff just doesn’t care. Either way, you will be waiting a long time."

- 787la57la47al

Inappropriate Smells

"Once went into a restaurant that boasted the biggest Cinnamon Rolls in the city/state... Only for there to be a pervasive smell of absolutely raw stagnate sewage throughout the dining room. Needless to say, did not return."

- nekroves

Construction Said It Best

"A green flag for a restaurant is when you see a lot of construction workers going there for lunch. You'll know it's cheap and good, hearty food."

"In my old city, there was this tiny little family-owned Chinese restaurant with delicious and cheap lunch specials. Every construction worker downtown sat at the counter at the front for lunch."

"Meanwhile, the waiters would be in this little back room watching TV and the chef must have been at least 70 years old. The food was genuinely so delicious and filling. Probably not good for your cholesterol but so tasty!"

- okaymoose

Atmosphere Matters

"Not a red flag about the food but if a place has their music up so loud I can’t hear the person I’m with, then I won’t eat there."

- Adro87

"Conversely, if it's TOO quiet; as in, not only is the sound system way too low, but if the customers are also weirdly quiet (barely having conversations, just sort of sitting there) and the atmosphere seems almost stifling."

"A couple of years ago we walked into a gastropub in Scotland just like this - very low music, the room was half full (and this was at peak lunch time), and everyone who was there were just sitting, looking sullen, barely speaking, waiting for their food. Just really... odd... vibes."

"After five minutes of sitting at the bar trying to get the attention of staff (who were all standing around looking at their phones), we left and went to a definitely *not fancy* cafe down the block that was the absolutely opposite: people just seemed happy to be there, staff were attentive, and the vibe was really welcoming."

- Good_Difference_2837

The Ultimate Red Flag

"Gordon Ramsey walking in with a camera crew."

- Tint-kicker

"One of the local restaurants we like was recently closed for a bit due to filming for 'Kitchen Nightmares.'"

"My husband still likes to get their food, but I'm waiting until the episode airs!"

- Lington

No restaurant is going to be perfect 100 percent of the time. They're going to have a slow night or poor response time or get some orders wrong from time to time.

But there are far more problematic behaviors and characteristics to find in a restaurant that are perfectly good reasons to never go back there again, no matter how good they may have been in the past.

The Absolute Weirdest Questions People Have Been Asked In A Job Interview

Reddit user TinyTbird12 asked: 'What is the weirdest question you’ve been asked at a job interview, what happened?'

job interview
Van Tay Media on Unsplash

I once burst out laughing during a job interview.

It was for an internal position so I knew all of the interviewers well, but even if I hadn't I doubt I could have kept a straight face.

What cracked me up?

This interview question:

"If I attended a backyard BBQ with your last boss, what do you think they'd say about you?"

After I stopped laughing,

I told the interviewer—who happened to be my then boss' boss:

"I'm sorry, but that sounds like a question from the Miss America Pageant."

The interview panel got a laugh out of that. And yes, I did answer the question.

So what odd, absurd or just plain strange interview questions have people gotten?

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The holiday season is lovely, but it's full of pressure to travel, plan, host, and of course, get gifts for a lot of people.

But the thing we don't really talk about is how common it is to want something specific and to not have someone in our life who tries to seek out what that thing is.

Unless we get it for ourselves, it's common that we won't get what we actually want.

Redditor GeneralSpectatorTots asked:

"What do you want for Christmas that you know you aren't going to get?"

​Sobriety 

"My brother to be sober and happy."

- whatwhatwhat82

"I’m also trying to get sober. I wish your brother well. Keep being a support to him."

- Keri2816

A New Home

"A house deposit."

- WolfGirl_4

"A house deposit? Just gift you a house!"

- Grenflik

A Financial Advantage

"A winning lottery ticket."

- Krem541

"Every year I ask Santa. Every f**king year."

- kuchikopi626

Grandma's Homecooked Meals

"One last meal from my grandma. She made the best food, and of course, you don't know the last time is going to be the last time until it's too late."

- fakefishy

Family Love

"Love from my parents."

- bub_501

"This mom is sending you a long hug."

- hippocampus237

A Professional Massage

"A gift certificate for a professional massage. I can't bring myself to spend the money on myself. I need to just bite the bullet and do it."

"I have asked for one every year for years. Sometimes it's the only thing I ask for from my parents and my partner (when they ask what I want)."

"I always get wonderful gifts that I love, use, and/or needed but I REALLY WANT A F**KING MASSAGE."

- agbmom

The Best Neighbor

"A card from my twin brother saying, 'Just kidding, I’m not moving to Washington, I actually found a place in your neighborhood!'"

- insertcaffeine

Very Important Things

"Free Healthcare and a good used car for my husband."

- Sufficient_Letter883

The End to Ableism

"Independence and not being infantilized because I’m a 37-year-old disabled woman and no one in my family understands (extended family who all live within 10 mins of me)."

- Keri2816

World Travel

"Guilt-free travel! It's like asking for a never-ending vacation. How I wish I could just hop around the world without worrying about a thing!"

- KayleNewirk

Sounds Like Paradise

"A pretty, and big apartment for me and my cat."

- cats-autumn

"For my cat to let me sleep through the night."

- Cheese_BasedLifeform

Moving Solutions

"A stress-free move, with eight days between closings of two houses four states apart, and four pets to manage in temporary housing. Help me, Santa, I’ve been a good girl."

- Kind-Dust7441

Ready To Be Done!

"For my doctoral capstone paper to finally be approved so I can be done with school! Please, please, Santa, I’m on rewrite 19!"

- TomatilloNo4213

Two Front Teeth

"My two front teeth... My two front teeth."

"But seriously, teeth."

"Mine are all falling out due to an autoimmune disease, and I need implants."

- donkeybrainz13

The Perfect Partner

"A partner to go on adventures with… have singalongs with… and who adores and truly sees me."

- miaoouu

While we may have been expecting some silly responses, or even for someone to finally buy the right brand of a favorite candle or lotion or makeup, these responses were a great reminder of what's really important.

And unfortunately, many of the most important things can't be replaced or fit into a Christmas stocking.

Person holding bouquet of flowers
Carrie Beth Williams/Unsplash

Breaking up is hard to do no matter who initiated it.

But once time has passed and exes have moved on, the healing process can be jarred by a surprise.

A regretfilled person may try and make contact with the one they broke up with and ask for forgiveness, or the person who had their heart broken could also reappear and plead for a fresh new start.

The outcome depends on how much, or how little, the spark of love remains.

Curious to hear more of this scenario from strangers online, Redditor XenaVonKeksdose asked:

"What would you say to your ex if they suddenly showed up at your door?"

For these Redditors, it wouldn't be a happy reunion.

Either, Or

"It ranges from 'come on in and make yourself comfortable' to 'get the f'k out of here' , depending on which one shows up."

– Lone_Buck

"Odds of it being the one who got away: low."

"Odds of it being the one who took 5 years to understand what 'f'k off' meant: pretty high."

– liquid_acid-OG

It's A Nightmare

"Screaming. They've passed."

– BigGrayBeast

"Similar situation here. I did have a dream that my late wife showed up at my door. She said, 'There was a mix up at the coroner, you wouldn’t believe what I’ve been through.”'

"Still in the dream we talked for a bit about nothing. Then I said, 'Wait, what about the life insurance, do we have to pay it back?' And just after that I woke up."

– AnonEMoussie

No Thanks

"Nah"

"Slowly closes the door while maintaining eye contact."

"Also aggressively locks the door."

– SnooCats7666

"raises drawbridge."

– lunalives

Some would show traces of resentment.

Unwelcome

"The f'k do you want? And how did you get this address?"

– s73v3m4nn

"wtf ffs"

– zxr7

Too Little Too Late

"You couldn't put in effort in messaging me, but you have effort now to see me months after we break up‽"

– ShyTerraWolf

"Wait, if you’re here who’s running hell?”

– So__bored

"Who’s guarding HADES."

– Boostio_TV

Hit 'Em Where It Hurts

"I lost weight... You seem to have found it."

– elmo-1959

"now get the f'k off my lawn."

– starkresilient

"Savage."

– 20190229

Others shared less bitter responses.

Coming Clean

"Honestly, I apologize. I know dealing with my prior alcoholism must have been a nightmare. I regret causing you and anyone else pain and hope you are happy. I am a year into sobriety and can understand why it ended. I wish you well."

"Edit: Since this is getting so much traction, I just want to say thanks for all the support. This could honestly be directed at a few of my exes. I am happily married now to someone that also got a taste of my drinking. We stuck it out while I got sober and I have to credit her with being an amazing support system. I also need to shout out r/stopdrinking for providing reinforcement on a daily basis. It is a great community. Naltrexone was also a major part of it. I can't change the past but I think I have a much better hold on the future."

– vivazeta

Someone That I Used To Know

"I've been married for almost 25 years, I don't know if I would even recognize any exes."

– 4a4a

"Yep. That person went from 'ex' to 'someone I once dated' years ago."

– ktwhite42

Expressing Regrets

"I'm sorry for the way I treated you."

– warlordwinters

"Good on you for growing."

– Zealousideal_Ad_7465

Catching Up

"I’d say hello! What are you doing here? It has been a long time."

– ExaminationLucky6082

Wish You Well

"A lot of snarky or comical answers in here, but I'll try to be as sincere as I can."

"My first major ex, first time I got my heart broken: I would sincerely hope that she's doing well. She broke my heart, but it was for the best and it made me into the man I am today. I don't want to think of how much worse I would be if she hadn't given me a reality check wake-up-call. So really just 'Hey, how have you been? I hope the years have been kind to you.'"

"My most recent ex, the first and only time I've had to break someone's heart: I honestly just hope that she can forgive me for having to make taking care of myself and my needs the priority in my life. She's an amazing woman, kindergarten school teacher, unanimously adored by everyone that meets her. But we met via travels, and lived in two different states. Circumstances shifted and seeing each other became much less frequent. Neither of us wanted to quit our jobs and chuck a grenade into our lives and careers. Eventually, for my own mental and emotional health, I had to call it. I truly hope she finds someone amazing, she deserves it. So I would just sincerely hope that she understands, and has moved on."

– obaterista93

I once showed up at an exes door after I broke up with him about a month prior.

I genuinely loved and missed him after making the very difficult decision to end things due to conflicting circumstances that kept us from maintaining a healthy relationship.

But I quickly learned that if you did the breaking up, you should respect the other person's space for a respectable amount of time.

I went to visit him at the apartment where we lived together and a new lover answered the door for him after there was a long period of giggles and lots of feet shuffling from behind the door.

Clearly, he was doing just fine.

Of course, I wasn't welcomed in and was asked what I wanted, to which I had no answer but, "do you have any mail for me?"

Sasquatch
Jon Sailer on Unsplash

People the world over develop their own specific folklore, heavily influenced by the natural world around them and their own culture.

The North American continent was no different.

Reddit user A_KULT_KILLAH wanted to know about the myths and legends of the Indigenous peoples of North America.

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