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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

What Birbitt thinks about restaurants.

Generally my family and I enjoy going out to eat on occasion, or ordering food in just so I can have a break. Today was one of those days but it was not an easy task.

We first tried to order in so we didn't have to go back out into the heat to have dinner. So we called our favorite place down the street but they must have been very busy because the first time I called they hung up on me though I'm sure it wasn't deliberate. So I called back several times and was unable to get them to pick up. I figured if they were that busy we should just order elsewhere. So hubby and I decided to try a new place so I called to place our order. We will not be calling them back anytime soon! I can honestly say today was a first for me, when I called and placed the order I requested that they substitute mayonnaise for the dressing on my sandwich to which I was told we don't do that here you'll have to order the sandwich as it's listed on the menu. I could not believe my ears did this man really tell me that I could not customize my order? So I explained again what I wanted and again he told me that they didn't do "special" orders. OK, fine so I politely told him that he could cancel the entire order and I'd just order somewhere else. He tells me I can't do that because they've already started the order...really I haven't even been given a total yet and you've already started my order? Finally after speaking to the manager I am able to cancel my order since they can't prepare it the way I like it.

By this time we've spent nearly an hour trying to order dinner...OK I give up! Boys get on your shoes we're going out! So we went out to dinner and it was yummy! The food was just the way we like it and the service was good. Now everyone has full bellies and we head home.

So here is what Birbitt think about restaurants. I can not believe that such a restaurant exists that you may only order what is on the menu exactly as it's listed on the menu. What if someone has an allergy? Having gone to culinary school myself I understand quite a bit about the restaurant world and this particular place boggles my mind. Is it not hard enough for restaurants right now with our economy struggling? Do they really have so much money coming in that they can afford to turn customers away simply because they want their order customized? Seriously I can not even begin to understand what this restaurant owner was thinking. It would be interesting to know how many customers this place actually has, because I can tell you I don't know too many people who would order there if they can't customize. I suppose this is the nature of business though, if you don't like one place there is always another down the road. However when people are scraping by and someone comes to your place to spend money I would think you'd do all you can to make sure that person spends the money there and comes back again. We will not be going back there again, but I guess they can afford to turn people away.

How places like this one survive tough times like this and yet we've seen many of our favorite little places go out of business in the past year is beyond me. This place doesn't deserve to be in business if this is how they treat customers, and yet so many little ma and pa type places can't afford to continue on becuase of the economy and those are the places we will miss the most.

OK, I know I'm ranting but this particular event just got me all in a knot. I shouldn't let it bother me but it does perhaps that's because I know the restaurant world so well, perhaps it's just because I'm pregnant and moody, or perhaps it's just because I am human and I was inconvenienced. I don't know why it bothers me so much to see places like this stay in business while the little guy or gal is put out of business by the economy but it just really bothers me.

Growing up mom, daddy and me we'd get in the car and just drive and see where we ended up. I always enjoyed this and when it came time to stop for dinner daddy always looked for a place that was maybe a little off the beaten path, maybe a little shabby looking on the outside, but the parking lot was always full and I can honestly say we've never been served a bad meal in a place like that. Little family run businesses almost always have honest, hard working folks behind the counter and good, wholesome meals on the table. I've tried to follow daddy's example but more and more it's becoming harder and harder to find those little places and we are sometimes forced to take our business to the "big dogs".

I believe this country was built on the back of ma and pa shopkeeper, and for as long as they're around and as long as I can find them I will search for them and spend my money there. Yes sometimes it's necessary to shop the big chain stores, but when I want someone to do the cooking for me, I want it to be in a quiet, out of the way, little place. Not a big impersonal chain.

So ma and pa if you are out there reading this just know that I am looking for you, and I am sure there are others out there just like me. Don't give up, work hard, and know that we appreciate you!

That's what Birbitt thinks.


  1. Wow! When we do really long hauls up & down the coast we look for the stops with all the trucks outside. The meals are usually really good & cheap. lol.

    Not much opportunity to eat out on the island. We save that for occassional mainland trips but the expense is too much for us as a regular thing & I do so hate Maccas & Pizza Hut et al ~ cheap & nasty. :(

  2. Birbitt, I have to say that ten years ago when we first moved to this area of Georgia we now live...well, it is the ONLY place I have ever been where the busiest Ma and Pa places had the worse food. No kidding! Leave it to the the backwoods of Georgia where greasy Bar-B-Que pork and breaded fried catfish are a big night out. We are not so limited here now since some of the chains have moved in with healthier choices, of course, but there was a time.


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