26 Servers Share the Most Insane Things They’ve Overheard at Their Tables


I am that person who automatically assumes everyone around me can hear my conversation when I’m out to eat – and based on these stories, I have good reason to think so.

Check out these 26 Reddit stories from waiters and waitresses who overheard hilarious conversations and bizarre customer interactions.

1. No ifs, ands, or butts about it

I had a summer job at a seafood place around the Charleston area. I seat this couple who were pretty funny. Anyways, I bring them their drinks and ask if they’re ready to order. I can’t remember what the husband ordered, but the wife didn’t like it. So he looks at her and says “Woman, I’ll still eat that butt of yours when you eat chili, so don’t give me no crap for ordering what I want”. She immediately replied “Harvey, I just need you to shut the hell up”. Then they both started laughing. Best table ever. And they tipped me like $20.

2. Clearly a bad girl

I saw a mother take her knife and with the flat part of it, whack the hand of her 2 year-old child because she was drawing something with her left hand. She yelled at her “No, use your right hand. Good girls don’t write with their left hand.”

This was as I was standing there taking their order and writing with my left hand.

3. You read that right

My favorite was a group of nurses. Pouring waters as one says the sentence “So a guy came in for an adult circumcision yesterday…”

Never ask a nurse about their day. It was worse than yours.

4. Princess Mommy

I approached a table with a family of five to take their order. Two adults and three kids from about 5 to 10 or so. One of the kid starts to say something and the father cuts him off by saying “Don’t say another word Peter. Nobody says a thing until princess Mommy makes up her mind and decides what she wants for dinner.” Followed by long awkward silence and me leaving.

5. Clown, ’nuff said

Party of five or six, it’s a group of friends having dinner. In walks a clown. Clown starts randomly walking around the restaurant doing balloon animals for kids and stuff like that. I have no idea what is going on, we didn’t hire this guy.

He walks over to the table of 5 or 6 and selects a man from the table to perform a magic trick for. He did the trick, a small flash of smoke and fire happens and then magically there is an engagement ring on a rope. The man takes the ring and the woman gets on her knees and asks the man to marry her. The man says no, tells her to get up and they continue dinner. This table now has the attention of the entire restaurant (like 300-400 people on our busiest night). Everybody just turned away and started awkwardly eating like nothing happened.

6. I hope you would

Shucker at an oyster bar here. So other than all the obvious terrible jokes I get, I can say, without a doubt, the most messed up thing I’ve ever heard was a man sitting with a woman who was getting more and more distraught and the man looks at her and says “Look, I told you when this whole thing started if I had to choose between you or my wife I’m picking my wife”.

7. Billy Bob dreams

I waited tables for 10 years at this small family owned restaurant in rural Ohio that had a “famous” sandwich. It was on a few Food Network shows and stuff like that.

A family comes in. Mom, dad, two little kids. I take their drink orders and as I am getting the drinks, the dad pulls me aside.

Dad: “My son is obsessed with Billy Bob Thorton. We told him that Billy Bob comes here and eats from time to time, so could you just play along.”

Me: “Yeah of course, no problem.”

I return with the drinks and the son, who is about 5 years old, starts asking me questions about Billy Bob Thorton. Like what he orders, if he is nice, stuff like that. I make stuff up, because I want a good tip and don’t want to ruin this little kids life. He is so excited to hear that Billy Bob comes to the same place he is at.

I can only imagine other scenarios where Billy Bob Thorton has appeared in this kid’s life.

8. Double up

I was at the bar, not waiting tables, but I have two stories. The first was a couple that sat down directly in front of where I was washing glasses. This was during the NBA Finals so I thought it was a bit odd they seemed so sad while everyone else was enjoying the game. They spent at least 4 hours there and from what I was able to hear they were discussing having another kid to fix their relationship. I guess she had cheated on him because she felt ’empty’ but didn’t want to end their relationship as they already had kids together. The guy was clearly very upset but said he’d support her if this is what she wanted.

The other was last week during a huge fundraiser we hosted. A group of 3 or 4 ladies were noticeably uncomfortable and when I asked if they were okay they told me that one of them had a stalker who constantly shows up at her house, work, and calls her repeatedly. He just showed up to the bar. She had threatened to call the police if he didn’t leave her alone, so what did he do? Naturally, he bought her a drink as an apology.

9. Read the manual

When I was a waiter, people often pretended that I wasn’t there. The stories they told were amazingly personal. One woman at a table of 6 lunching ladies told the story of how her husband was recently prescribed viagra. “He took it like a vitamin – 1 pill every morning. He kept having erections at work and didn’t understand why.”

10. Dying

Late one night I had this couple who were maybe in their late 30s. The guy looked a tough guy.

From the moment they came in, the woman was crying the whole time. Not like, a little bit crying but straight up bawling. She hadn’t talked to me the entire time, but the guy was very chatty. He explained to me how he had just found out that he only had a few months left to live and how she, his “angel” was gonna take care of his boy for him and all this crap. Anyway, I felt pretty genuinely bad cause that’s a pretty sad thing to hear.

Then I saw them come in again over a year and a half later…. Acting totally normal. They didn’t remember me, but how do you forget the face of someone that told you they were dying?

11. That’s cuz you can’t

Ex waiter. I’m walking down a long hallway carrying a tray of food. A kid comes running from a perpendicular hallway and run face first into the wall without putting his hands up. He starts crying. The dad walks behind him very calmly and kneels down and says, “Buddy, you just can’t go running into walls.”

12. Apples and spaghetti

I sat a table of three: a mom, her daughter, and her grandma.

After sitting, Grandma left to order spaghetti at the Italian place next door.

Mom seemed to be having an existential crisis. I asked her what she wanted to drink.

“I don’t know,” she said.

“Can I get you some water?” I asked.

“I don’t know.”

“Do you want me to come back later?”

“I’m not sure.”

The daughter, who was getting impatient, stood up on her chair.

“Hey!” she said. “I’ll have you know. I want apples!”

“But first I have to get you something to drink. Would you like some water?”

“I want apples!”

Grandma ate Italian food in silence while Mom stared at a menu for an hour and a half and the daughter ate apples. When they finished, Mom paid, and they left. She tipped well, considering all they bought was $.50-worth of apple slices.

13. Nothing in life is free

“I heard if you complain here you get your meal for free”

I sidled by and politely told her that wasn’t the case.

14. A happy meal

My Mom and I went to a restaurant in a town we were visiting, and we were seated close by a family just sitting down to dinner. As soon as they sat down, the waitress asked if they wanted a drink. Dad and Mom ordered wine and son looks at waitress and then blurts out to his parents “I’m gay.”

Waitress leaves. Parents look at their son and then look at each other. Mom then asks Dad what he is thinking of having to eat. Son again exclaims “I’m gay.” Parents look at him deadpan and say in unison, “we know”. Then waitress came and took our orders and I didn’t hear what happened next. But they stayed and enjoyed their meal and seemed to be fine with each other.

15. Happily ever after

Heard a group of 3 women talking about how each of their 4th/5th/ whatever many marriages are going and how they treat marrying for money as their career.

One of them paid with their newest husband’s black AMEX card.