Sunday, December 30, 2012

Dave & Busted

R.a.n.t. of week 12/30/12
This past weekend, I was invited by a friend to an eatery I've heard others describe as an "Adult Chuck E. Cheese". I had never been to this place so figured I'd give it a whirl, mostly because my children were with me and they would likely enjoy the games the establishment provided. As we arrived, I saw another friend who had arrived about thirty minutes before us. As luck would have it, the booth next to him was open so the waitress gave us that one. So how did the encounter go? Well, it's the topic of this weeks r.a.n.t., so probably not as well as I would have liked it to. Later on at home, I took the opportunity to fill out a survey to express what I thought of the place. One of the questions asked about the attentiveness of our server. Following are the actual comments I left.
"I had to ask for straws for our drinks. Then I had to ask for cutlery for our food. Is there a charge for drink refills? I have no idea because we were never asked if we needed another drink."

I'm a master of passive aggressive behaviour so my first attempt at trying to gain forks and knives was when the waitress walked past and I grabbed a handful of mashed potatoes and began eating them from my fingers. That didn't seem to catch her notice so I ended up flagging her down and asking for the utensils. Connie told me she thought it was odd I was doing that and I replied, "I just thought that was the 'thing' here." She laughed but finally gave the utensils for the six of us. "I won't make you eat with your fingers any more." she replied.

Additionally, the food was not something I'd write home about. But it was perfect to write a blog about. I ordered a chicken plate which came with mashed potatoes. I did like the coating on the chicken, but it was served lukewarm. Also the mashed potatoes were prepared gazpacho style. I also stole a French-fry from my friends plate when he made the mistake of stepping away for a bit while the food was just about to be served (so his food was really cold by the time he received it). Needless to say, the fry was likely sitting under a heat lamp in the back for a while.

Continuing with the survey I filled out later, it asked for additional comments on how happy I was with my visit. Once again, my actual response is included.
"Had 6 people in my 'party' but had to pay an 18% gratuity. This was gratuity even AFTER simple game cards were purchased, not just food items. Then found out another table complained about the gratuity and had it waived. How unfair!!!"

When I received my bill, I was shocked to find I had to pay an 18% gratuity fee for a party of 8 or more. I can only assume this was because I stopped to say hi to my friend on the way in. Suddenly he was a part of 'my' party, despite us not even talking during the entire course of our meal. I had my own table of company to keep. After I paid the bill I was informed he had his bill taken care of because he was outraged by the added gratuity and the fact it was for game cards which could have easily been purchased at a kiosk. Some dinner deal I received.

One of the last questions the survey asked was, what could have made my visit more pleasurable.
"Not be charged an 18% gratuity for an inattentive waitress.
Not be charged an 18% gratuity for cold food.
Not be charged an 18% gratuity for a party of only 6."

On top of everything else, the price of the games confused me. The game cards are full of 'credits' which do not equal the amount of monies put on the card. Each game has a cost averaging between 5.2 and 9.9 credits. Yes, those are decimal points. This confounded me and made it difficult to figure out exactly how much I was really spending on each game.

Okay, I realize you are probably saying, 'Jeffrey you complain to much. If you dislike the place so much, don't visit it again.' Point taken, I think I can manage that.


  1. At the very least, I would inform the credit card company that there was NOT an 8 person party- and that you did NOT agree to the gratuity. That will yield some satisfaction for the cold food/poor service.
    I would also post the NAME and ADDRESS of the institution and tweet a reference to the post- with the name- so that others would be warned. It also will cause the establishment to change its ways...

  2. The article was tweeted with an appropriate hash-tag. I'm more than willing to offer up the name, address, time and date of said visit to anyone (corporate or otherwise) wishes to know.