Ohio Server Fired For Posting About Terrible Tippers on Facebook

Illustration for article titled Ohio Server Fired For Posting About Terrible Tippers on Facebook

A Findlay, Ohio server has been fired from her job at Texas Roadhouse for complaining about crappy tippers in a Facebook status.

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Kirsten Kelly was laid off last Monday after she came home from a particularly bad shift and posted a Facebook rant about terrible customers. Kelly didn't mention any specific customers, nor did she mention Texas Roadhouse by name...but one of the people she was talking about was apparently a high school classmate she was friends with on Facebook.* The classmate screen-printed the status, took it into the restaurant, and got her fired.

So, first off: total dick move by the customer there. If you're going to leave a 10% tip, you don't have the moral grounds to complain about your server calling you an asshole. At the same time, I can't blame Texas Roadhouse for this at all, and I hate this story for the fact that it just caused me to type that sentence.

"I just said, 'If you come into a restaurant and spend $50 or more, you should be able to tip appropriately for that,'" Kelly said.

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I mean, that's true. That's a fair point, and that's absolutely correct. But then there's this little cherry:

The Texas Roadhouse Corporate Office based in Louisville, Kentucky, told WTOL Kelly was fired for using a derogatory name to refer to the customer in her Facebook post, which has since been removed. They say it is corporate policy that employees are not allowed to make any mention of the restaurant on social media..."Texas Roadhouse does not tolerate offensive language towards guests, whether it occurs online, offline or even in the parking lot."

Yeah...about that. I have no problem believing Kelly's post swore about the guest, because when I got shitty tips, you can bet your ass what came out of my mouth would've made a longshoreman blush — and that's a thing you just can't do where a customer might see it. You can say you hope they get genital botulism or that they have the common decency of lawn furniture or that they belong in a special level of hell where they have to spend eternity watching Mind of Mencia reruns, but you can't say it in potential view of said asshole, no matter how badly you want to.

I've been in Kelly's position before vis a vis wanting to find some way to get back at horrible customers — every server has. Hell, once I actually went online and looked up the name of a douchebag CEO who left me $50 on a $600 check (a name I really wish I still remembered, because fuck that guy). Of course, I didn't do anything with that information, nor did I post about it in any way, because that's the thing — you can't. That's part of the shittiness of being a server: you have no recourse when customers are dickholes. I think part of the reason Behind Closed Ovens and Not Always Right are so popular is because servers don't feel like they have a voice when people crap on them.** Even still, you have to know the potential consequences before you click post — and how the hell do you not know the consequences if one of the people you're talking about was a former classmate who you're friends with on Facebook?

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Was the customer who printed out a screenshot and took it in an unquestionable shithead? Absolutely. Getting someone fired over something they said in their personal life after you were an asshole makes you less than pond scum, as far as I'm concerned. But Kelly should've known better, and she doesn't really have much to complain about here. Chalk it up to a lesson learned.

*This right here is why I don't accept friend requests from classmates I didn't like. I'm just saying.

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**This is also the reason I will never, ever, ever, ever, EVER do a BCO from the customer's perspective. You have plenty of avenues to speak already, go whine on Yelp about your server forgetting you asked for no mayo.

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DISCUSSION

gnomimalone
Gnomi Malone

Oh man, I have a story similar to this from pre-facebook days. Long, sorry:

The summer I graduated from high school, I got a server job at a nice restaurant where there was a lot of competition for the position. The owner/manager were adamant about hiring someone who was not just looking for a summer job before leaving for college and would be there for at least a year. I was originally planning on going to an out of state college on the other side of the country but it ended up being too expensive, so by the time I applied for this job I knew I was going to the local university for at least a year and assured the owner that I wasn't leaving in the fall.

Fast forward about 6 weeks, I have finished the rigorous training the restaurant required and had just started making good money. One of my tables was a group of girls I knew from high school whom I considered friends but didn't really hang out with them often. One of the girls was glaring at me all night and being snotty, I couldn't understand why. They stiffed me on the tip but being a group of 18 year olds, it wasn't a big deal, I didn't think twice about it. And that's not the bad part.

The next day I show up for work and get pulled into a meeting with the owner and the manager who grill me about where I am going to college in the fall ("Local University, I told you that!") and they insist repeatedly that I lied to get the job and will be going out of state in the fall to another college. They don't want a liar on staff, so I'm fired and can leave immediately. I started crying and promising that I was going to Local University, then the owner whips out a photograph (taken with a camera and printed at a film store, thats how long ago this was) that one of the girls took at our high school- in the background is a map of the country and students names/colleges that they will be attending with an arrow to that city. The girl is giving the camera a thumbs up and pointing to my name which still says "Pilot to Gunner, Out of State College", because we made that college map months ago and my plans had since changed.

Turns out this girl had applied for the server position and was rejected because she was leaving for college in the fall. So she went to our old high school, took a photo to prove I'd "lied to get the job", brought it to my work and got me fired. I explained that I had changed colleges but they didn't believe me and laughingly told me to bring my Local University ID in and they would give me my job back. I didn't get my ID until school started in the fall (2 months away) but when I did, I stomped into the manager's office and shoved it in his face. Beet red face, apologies, offered me the position back... I told him to fuck himself.

TL;DR: Asshole customer I went to high school with went out of her way to get me fired by bringing a photo to my work, because she was annoyed that I got a waitressing job instead of her.