I used to wait tables, and let me tell you... I saw some weird things on the job. Mostly entertaining things, actually, but ocassionally awkward things. Like bad first dates. I once had the unfortunate experience of seeing the most awkward first date between two people who seemed unable to start a conversation. Every time one of them would try, the other would look down or look away. One trembled noticeably. I think they were both nervous and anxious people. They tipped well, for what it's worth, and I do hope they figured something out.
After Redditor Flavor_Town asked the online community, "Waiters and Waitresses of Reddit, what's the most awkward first date you had to witness firsthand?" people shared their stories.
"This one time..."
I worked at a bar where like 50% of our business was from Tinder dates.
This one time, two guys came in separately and sat at different tables by themselves, along the same wall. They were both facing the door and clearly waiting for dates.
Eventually, a woman comes in, walks up to the closest guy, sits down and they start chatting. They start ordering drinks. After ~5 minutes, the other guy, who is still waiting by himself, gets up and walks over to the couple. He says 'hi' to the girl and is like 'um aren't you so-and-so? ...I'm so-and-so we were supposed to be meeting?' She was clearly flustered, lots of awkward laughter, and she gets up and goes with the other guy to the other table.
A couple of minutes later the other woman shows up and sits with the first guy and he tells her all about it.
Okay, that was really cute.
But it gets worse from here.
"Painful to watch."
Once, as a high school teenager, while waiting tables at a now-defunct Mexican restaurant chain (think Applebee's, but tacos), a first date came in. They seemed unable to converse. It was super awkward. Painful to watch. Well, at one point the woman asked for a refill of her tea. I dutifully went and got the pitcher and came back to fill her glass. While pouring, i literally dropped the entire pitcher, a full gallon, of sweet, sticky tea directly onto her. It went down her shirt. Her skirt. It was everywhere. She was completely and utterly soaked. My newly blossoming career as a server flashed before my incredibly stoned eyes. I apologized profusely. I brought her out like 4000 napkins. Her date was dumbfounded and probably thinking "didn't think this could get worse, but here we are".
Well, she cleaned up the best she could. And they ate their meals. And, magically, they began talking. They started looking at each other as a new couple looks at each other. They laughed. They enjoyed their s*** food. She dried out.
They left the restaurant an hour later, with her arm in his. They gave me the biggest tip I had ever gotten. I got $20 on a $20 bill, in 1996.
Somehow, my idiotic, high blunder, turned the worst first date ever into the best first date ever.
I like to imagine them now as happily married, parents of 7 lovely children, who love telling the story of the moron who poured an entire gallon of tea on her, 25 years ago.
Let's hope they married...
...because I cringed reading that!
"Whole time they're sitting at the end of the bar..."
Worked at a pub connected to a brewery in college. Dude comes in with a stunning woman, I mean she's absolutely gorgeous. Whole time they're sitting at the end of the bar, and you can hear the guy talking about how he has a room for them next door at the hotel in downtown. So they decide to go to the brewery next door, gonna pull a little dine and dash. They got over there and didn't realize we are on the same system, so he orders a couple of beers, and the bartender on the brewery side asks if he wants to add it to his tab. He looks over confused and says "what tab? I've never been here." She prints off the restaurant bill plus his brewery tab, it's like $80 or so. He just blankly stares at the poor bartender, flies off the handle. The girl he was with ended up paying for it. They walked across the street and to the hotel, he has already invited her up, she stalls until her Uber gets there and then just dipped out. Kinda funny, kinda awkward, but that's what you get for dine and dash.
"I head over to take their order..."
I used to work at a Mexican restaurant and one year when I was working on Valentine's I was subject to one of the weirdest first dates ever.
A couple walks in, she is dressed to the nines, like she's ready to hit up a club. He is dressed more casually, in jeans and a button-down. Our hostess seats them and when I go to greet them the man announces that this is their very first date! The lady looks less than impressed and gives a small smile, more like a grimace. They order drinks and as I'm watching their table you can tell that the date is not going well. The guy is talking animatedly and the girl is glancing around like she'd rather be anywhere else.
I head over to take their order and it's clear that I've interrupted something. The guy looks a little embarrassed and sad and the girl looks pissed off. He orders his meal and she flippantly orders something (seafood enchiladas) without really looking at the menu. She tosses her menu in my direction and sucks down the rest of her drink. Okaaaaay then.
I deliver their food and go back behind the counter to continue rolling silverware and watching my tables. They dig in and the man seems to be enjoying his food, his date looks disgusted and is flicking bits of her dinner around the table/floor. I walk over to check in and see if she maybe wants to order something else. I get to the table to ask how everything is and she gets up, SCREAMS that her food is DISGUSTING, and goes OFF about how s**** this date was. She started yelling at him about how he should have ordered for her, how dare he take her to such a low-class place, she was so done with this, blah blah blah. She shoves her plate away, gets up, and storms out of the restaurant. The dude is mortified. I tell him I'll be right back with the bill and would he like his food boxed up? This guy shakes his head, pulls her plate towards him, and says nope, he's fine to continue eating the meals he's paid for.
He stayed for the duration of his meal. I never did find out what happened to the lady. We talked about that incident for WEEKS after!
"A couple was shown to their table..."
A couple was shown to their table, and the guy was on the phone the entire time. I normally wait until guests are off their phones to give my spiel, the specials, and such and take a drink order, but he didn't show any sign of getting off the phone. I take the order, which the guy just holds his hand over the phone, talks over his date. When I come back, she attempts to order an app, our house specialty, and he tries to say the portions are large enough without. She orders the zucchini anyway. I get the dinner order, and bring out the app. At this point, I hadn't been to the table when he hadn't been on the phone. While I was putting together the salad, the woman comes out to the lobby and asks to get her meal packed up. She ended up paying her half of the bill and ducking out. She told me this was their first date and she was set up by a soon-to-be-former friend. Said she was going to be calling her friend as she walked out. When I brought the guy's meal to him, he asked where her dinner was and I told him what happened. He really thought she was in the bathroom...
"Then she leaves..."
Not a first date, but very awkward: a guy comes in with an escort and drops a good amount of money on booze at the bar. Then she leaves a few hours later, and he informs us that his wife is on her way to meet him for dinner and tips us an extra $200 to keep our mouths shut. Keeping it classy!
"A teenage couple..."
A teenage couple sharing an ice cream and holding hands very awkwardly. After they finished the ice cream they kept talking about their - very adventurous - sexual fantasies. They were around 14 years old. Super awkward to have to interrupt them to ask if they want anything else.
They grow up so fast, don't they?
Bet they were loud in the way teenagers always are, too.
"I used to work at a sushi restaurant..."
I used to work at a sushi restaurant in Anchorage, and there was a girl who would come about once every few weeks with a different guy. Every single time, she ordered a heodubbap, which is like a rice-salad-sashimi bowl, and it was GIANT. I've only ever seen a handful of people ever finish the entire thing in one sitting. She would finish the whole thing (with CHOPSTICKS) and always ask for a spoon towards the end. It was always fun watching the guys look stunned when she finished.
One day she came with this dude that ordered what she did, and when they both finished the bowl, they ordered another and split it.
Wish they had ended up together but she came back with a different guy a couple weeks later.
"One time a person..."
I worked as a barista at a coffee shop with a dishwashing sink that brought you face to face with whoever was sitting at the coffee bar across from you. For some reason, so many people chose this spot for their first dates, so I would have to wash dishes and pretend I wasn't literally on the date with them.
One time a person I knew was on their first date with someone and chose that cursed seat across for the dishwashing sink. Because we knew each other, we chatted a little bit and then as if a partition raised between us, they began their date... but I still had dishes to do..... So uncomfortable.
"After the appetizers..."
I had these two people that were there on a first date. After the appetizers, this poor man got the s**** and was going back and forth to the bathroom all night. There were only a few other people in the restaurant at the time so it was noticeable and they were chuckling every time he got up. I honestly felt so bad for the guy.
I'll close this out...
...with another story.
Some years ago I waited on a man who kept barking at the staff when his date didn't show up as planned. It was awkward to see him getting more visibly upset as time went on. I later ran into his date... who'd been sitting at the bar eating onion rings and tossing back a beer the whole time and had decided when she walked in that she didn't find the man attractive but didn't have the heart to say anything about it.
Have your own stories to share? Feel free to sound off in the comments below.
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There are few things more annoying than when you are seeking advice and someone responds with a boring platitude that helps no one. Believe it or not, if you choose to provide advice, it needs to be specific to the situation and shouldn't be dressed up in trite phrasing. Does saying, "Keep your head up" actually contribute anything if that's all you have to say when someone comes to you in search of a listening ear?
But this goes deeper than just advice, to be fair. Some of us are sick of greedy corporations that stress the importance of being a "family" while refusing to pay proper wages. Still more of us are tired of people using certain language when other language can suffice.
After Redditor BensReddits asked the online community, "What is a phrase you absolutely hate hearing?" people shared their stories.
"At any sort of conference..."
At any sort of conference/gathering/presentation:
"How're you all doing today?!? C'mon, I know you can answer louder than that! HOW ARE YOU ALL DOING TODAY?!"
Instant resentment every time.
I second that resentment.
I attended a conference once where the main speaker did this several times in the span of thirty minutes as he announced different initiatives.
Such a headache.
"At my work..."
At my work upper management has started using the word "activate" a lot. As in, "We are working on plans to activate underutilized spaces." And, "Let's activate a few other teams on this." It just sounds silly to me and like they are trying too hard to avoid using simple, perfectly adequate language.
I'll take your "activate" and give you...
What is wrong with the word "use"?
"I was born in Australia..."
"Your English is so good!"
Thank you, I was born in Australia and English is literally my first language. My standard response these days is, "Oh thank you, yours too!"
This one is especially annoying...
...if you're not alabaster white.
This is a big one:
"Where are you from? No I mean where are you from."
Also annoying if you're not alabaster white.
"Someone saying to a teenager..."
Someone saying to a teenager, "These are the best years of your life!" I am in my mid-40s now and most people my age remember high school as horrible and awkward. The more appropriate thing to say is, "Hang in there kid! I promise life gets better. Just get through adolescence the best you can."
High school sucked.
My life vastly improved in my 20s. Let's not convince teenagers that they have nothing to look forward to after high school's over and done with.
"That's nothing... " when I tell them something only for them to turn it onto a competition and say something worse that happened to them.
The chronic one-upper.
"But she's your mother!"
Yeah, well she should've acted like one.
"I've heard it from people..."
"When you have your own children you'll understand."
I've heard it from people who don't understand that I want nothing more than my own family but being pregnant will kill me, and when I bring up adoption as a valid way of having children they'll buckle down on that phrase as to say adopted kids are not the same. It's disheartening to hear as a formal foster child and has reinforced my beliefs that no one really saw me as enough. Why would you say that to someone? All kids are the same and those without kids shouldn't be dismissed.
"I lost my daughter..."
"God has a plan" or "It happened for a reason."
I lost my daughter when I was 36 weeks in because of a sudden placental abruption followed by a uterine rupture, lost 2.2 litres of blood. I can't carry again without risking the child or myself. And I had to listen to a variety of phrases that made me want to hit those people. Those two were the worst. Followed by "You can try again" or "Did you get the child baptized?" (got this one only once though).
"Who on earth..."
"When are you going to have kids?"
Who on earth are you to not only insist I should stop and redirect my whole life for kids, but then put me on the spot and make up a timetable to change my whole life? Not everyone wants kids.
Now that you've learned a thing or two...
...you could say that all of the responses here are an exceptional opportunity to improve your social skills.
Have some of your own stories to share? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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Dating is difficult––and truth be told, I don't know how anyone can do it right now, what with a pandemic going on and all. Just the thought stresses me out. Dating is especially hard for people who defy expectations in a heteronormative society. Take bisexuals, for example.
Bisexuals have been open about their struggles maintaining relationships with both men and women, even having to lie about their sexuality if they want to date certain people.
"I feel like if I end up in a straight relationship, I'll look like I was just experimenting all these years, but if I end up in a gay relationship people will say I was never actually bisexual," one man told the BBC in 2019. "Then if I don't have a monogamous relationship people will say I'm just greedy."
Indeed, the pressure to be either gay or straight can be a lot to navigate. After Redditor Trevor-on-Reddit asked the online community, "Bisexual people who have dated both genders, what are some notable differences you've learned about dating both men and women?" bisexuals spoke candidly about their experiences. Take note: You might learn something new.
We all know someone who really cannot figure out even the most basic thing without copious amounts of help. But when you meet someone who is completely and totally past all help, how do you even begin to try to help them get along?
Most of the time, they will just be flustered, or they won't listen. And you have to just stand Idly by and watch them fail.
What is your "This person has no idea how the real world works" moment?
Here were some of those stories.
The Boot, Not The Camp
When I was in boot camp, some kid put his letter addressed to 'mom' with no address attatched.
I was gonna say that its not that stupid for a very young kid to do that, but then I realized you said boot camp and not summer camp.
Don't Steal Dangerous Chemicals
A student working part time at my laboratory at a University came into my office and asked "so what all can I eat in the refrigerator, I didn't know I was supposed to bring my own lunch". I looked at him, stunned and replied "nothing, that food is what people brought for their own lunch, but you can use my grub hub to order". He DID NOT UNDERSTAND. It took 4 tries to get him to realize he can't just eat someone else's lunch.
Same student: I walked into the lab room and told him I made a full pot of coffee in the office and he could help himself. Him: "a pot of coffee? What's that?" He never used a coffee maker other than a Kuerig before and didn't even know it was a thing.
He was fired a month later for stealing chloroform.
No Ma'am, Like, REAL Bears
At a national park, the park ranger says "stay on the trails, there are bears in the area."
One lady says "isn't that dangerous? Why aren't they in their cages?"
"Ma'am, we're not a zoo."
These people are lucky to make it out of bed every day.
Sleeping On The Job
I lived with some Japanese exchange students during the final summer of college. They were really nice girls, but one of them (Mari) (~19 years old) obviously had no idea how anything worked. She spoke the best English and I was tutoring some of the other girls, while they helped me with my Japanese.
But Mari would constantly call me to come to get her because she thought we had free buses (all the buses). After all, we were students. That wasn't the issue. I could deal with that. It was a whole new culture. She was learning.
But what happened that made me realize Mari could not be left on her own was when she ended up in Eloy, Arizona. Which was ~400 miles and five hours from where we were. She had been talking to some guy on campus, he said he was visiting family in Arizona, and she said "I want to go."
He just took her with him, and she went without even telling us. She had just assumed the guy would take her back, but he said he couldn't because he was staying in Arizona. So I had to arrange a ticket, get her on the bus via the phone, and then pick her up two hours away because she missed her second bus by napping.
How...? What...? Huh...?
Had a friend who was in some uncredited scam online college for her master's degree in medical billing or something. She was on a loan program that was sending her about $5k every 3 months directly to her via check in the mail.
This was her only source of income. She kept calling it a grant that didn't need to be paid back. She was flat broke as a joke for 2 months but then the check would come in and she would be living the good life for a few weeks before being poor again.
We tried to do an intervention and show her the insane interest rate that would be back dated as soon as her "school" was done but she didn't want anyone to bust her free money dreams.
She just kept talking about all the money she would eventually be making billing insurance companies...turns out she wasn't even logging in to the online college or even attempting to get this degree.
She thought the money was free, the degree was automatic and the job was guaranteed. Some people are beyond help.
Such Brilliant. So Money. Wow
My boss told me about a friend of his, who told him af a "life hack". She would get her bills in the mail, NOT pay them, and then wait a couple of months to pay. Then she would cry so the debt collectors would feel bad and waive the fees for not paying on time. That was her "brilliant life hack"
Himbo Rights Activist
The other day, my 18yo brother-in-law got married to his highschool sweetheart in a parking garage so that they can live off campus at college together.
Girlfriend's, now wife, mother is an ordained minister. His parents, my in-laws, were very upset and he couldn't understand why because "it's just a fake marriage for school". Oh no, sweet boy. You are MARRIED. I just laughed and laughed. I love him dearly. He is a dumb*ss.
And yet somehow they are there to add these stories to our dull, dull days.
A dude (18 yo) in boot camp got a letter from home and I can see he is agitated. Being 22 and concerned for his well-being, I asked him if he wanted to talk about it. (I'm thinking a Dear John letter or the Mom and Dad divorcing letter.)
He dead *ss told me that his younger brother got a Mercedes for his birthday and that he was pissed bc he "only got a BMW". Can't remember what I said, but I knew boot camp was gonna knock down. (It did.)
Who Pays Your Bills?
When my roommate, who never once paid for rent or groceries or anything, turned down the only job offer they have ever gotten, in front of me, TWICE.
They were so desperate they called him twice, offering good pay, during covid, and he had the gaul to say no in front of me. His excuse was "nah I'm sure there's something better. $20 an hour is garbage in this city" -_-
Just Read ONE Parenting Book
I worked for a clueless couple who had no idea how to raise a kid. He wore the same outfit everyday for a month until I gently suggested that he needs new clothes. His parents asked me "Where can we get baby clothes?" This was slightly hilarious given that they lived above a Target and next to a baby boutique.
I had to have the same conversation once the child was old enough for solid foods. I was asked "Where can we get baby food?" I had to explain that most grocery stores carry a baby aisle, or that she can mash up her own fruits at home for the baby. This family decided that sour cream would be a great first food for their baby!
I'll mention that this was a wealthy family who went on vacation at least 2-3 times a month. By far the weirdest thing they did was try and drop off Grandma at daycare along with the baby.
Stories like this make you feel like the most well-equipped, with it person alive, right?
We're all well aware of the weird, horrible, predatory things men do when attracted to women. But what about when women are the culprits?
Though it seems that, statistically, men are problematic at a WAY higher rate than women, there are certainly times where the person bringing the creepy vibes is, indeed, the woman.
Some men of Reddit gathered to share the most bizarre and uncomfortable things a woman has ever said.
AidenTheGamer14 asked, "Men of Reddit, what is the creepiest thing a girl has ever said or done to you?"
For some, it was the stalkers.
The cryptic behavior and frightening detective work of ex-lovers can be unparalleled.
Some Light Sleuthing
"Found out my address from the phone book, this was the 90s, sat outside my house for multiple nights, all night just watching my house, I live in the middle of the woods miles outside of town."
"We only had one date and agreed to leave it at that. I found out sometime later what she had been doing."
"Girl I was dating asked if I had changed the locks since breaking up with my ex months prior. I'm like 'No, but she wasn't a crazy person so I never worried about it.' She says if I don't change the locks she ain't comfortable sleeping over, so I change the locks."
"This ex sends me an angry text the next day 'So you changed your locks huh? Real nice a**hole.' So she had been coming over this whole time and doing who knows what."
She Stopped at Nothing
"She kept writing me letters at every address I lived at during that five-year period. If she didn't have the address she'd send them care of my parents. The most memorable is the one where she told me she was married and 'he's a great guy but he's not you.' "
"Once not long after I'd moved to a new address I came home and found a box of cookies she'd FedExed to me. Eventually I moved to a new state. I knew from her return addresses that she lived and worked there, and was worried we'd run into each other but realized that was pretty unlikely."
"Then after less than a year, she found me through a blog I was keeping and left a message on my voicemail demanding we meet. I posted a message to her on my blog telling her to stop harrassing me or I'd call the police (up to that point I'd been ignoring her, hoping she'd take the hint). That night she called, I repeated my threat to bring the authorities in, and I haven't heard from her since."
Others dealt with the creepiness on the internet. With so many avenues of communication all around us, uncomfortable comments can come from all directions.
"Someone I considered a friend started to grow feelings for me, but when she found out I had a girlfriend and I didn't feel the same for her she found out who my girlfriend was somehow. She then DM'd her and tried to tell her that I was cheating on her with her."
"Luckily I was with her when she got that DM so I could explain the situation and then we blocked her. Next day she DM'd her again from an alt account."
Worst Kind of Pen Pal
"I started a new job, and I shared a small office with a woman my age (and a couple other people). She was kinda cute but also weird and super naïve (she grew up in a very rural area). She'd flirt with me a lot, but I wasn't interested."
"So she started sending me emails."
"They were super long, detailing her whole day. And she sent them to me every day. I never responded. Then one day she sent me this long email confessing her love. I replied with the (very obvious) reasons why it wouldn't work and asked her to stop sending me emails every day. She didn't."
"They kept coming. This went on for months. I asked her in person and online to stop, but I still got these email memoirs every day. Eventually I had another female office mate who was her friend have a talk with her. Finally the emails stopped."
That's A Lot of Passwords
"I've had a girl create about 50 different Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram accounts all to try to get me to friend her. I've never met this woman in person and yet every few weeks I'll get a handful of friend requests from her"
"Met this girl online and talked to her a bit. I did started to like her."
"Later found out that the pic she showed me of herself was actually a pic of her friend who had passed away due to cancer."
In my early 20's I was at a party and the hosting woman full-on tried to reach down my pants to grab my business."
"Strange, yes, what made it creepy is that we were right in front of her mother, who was cheering her on."
Breaking Out the Scroll
"After 6 months from our breakup, my ex called me because she wanted to see me. It seemed strange to me but I accepted. When we met she was friendly and all..."
"Then at a certain point she pulls a sheet in which there was written a list of all men she fu**ed after our relationship and she read it all to me, with accurate description of every sexual intercourse. Well it was an awkward moment."
"I was going to head home after a night out and a I was getting into my taxi a girl jumped in after me. I asked what they were doing and she said 'I'm coming home with you.' "
"Nope. Taxi driver helped me and she got out the car eventually when I shot down her advances."
Again, it's important to read this thread and remember that this is a bias sample, solely focused on the incidents where a woman did act creepy.
But, yes, it happens out there.
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