Thursday, May 27, 2010

Mojito after mojito after flarbbbblrgttz

A.J., Meredith, Aminah and Rasanah, at C.O. Jones My friend Rasanah (far right) organized a happy hour get-together yesterday that began at a little bar (with an extensive enough menu that I suppose it was a restaurant) called Dolci, which serves highly refreshing but decidedly diminutive pitchers of mojitos. We had several, and they really hit at the end of a steamy summer day.

At this point, a few SOM-ers have already begun their internships. My friend Aminah (pictured, in the midst of some dramatic or distressing text messaging) has started working at United Way in New Haven, and my friend Carolyn, not pictured, is spending her summer doing marketing for Mory's, a Yale-affiliated eating club, also in New Haven.

Aminah and Haris at DolciAfter our mojitos at Dolci (left), we stumbled across the street to the patio of C.O. Jones (above), where we had some food that, if memory serves, wasn't very good. Business school has made me much less patient about customer service. The five of us received a bill, which naturally they couldn't be bothered to split for us. Fine. So we tallied up each of our orders and wrote them down and handed her credit cards with corresponding dollar amounts. No, in fact, she could not do that -- we had to all either put it on one card or pay in cash.

That's the point at which I would prefer just to leave without paying, which I realize some people say is akin to stealing but in my view is not. If two legitimate and legal attempts to pay are rejected -- if they want to make it so difficult to pay that I actually have to stroll up and down the street looking for an ATM -- then I have half a mind not to pay at all. I did, of course.

Maybe two weeks ago, I encountered similar irritation when I went to Mamoun's for lunch, and my total was about $8. I wanted to pay with a card, but they rejected it and said there was a $10 (or maybe $20, I don't remember) minimum for card charges. I have been told but have not independently confirmed that credit card companies explicitly discourage this practice, as they should. In the face of such a anti-customer policy, I am tempted to declare, whilst stomping my fist on the counter, "If you wish not to take the money I am offering you, I will be on my way. Toodles." Again, of course, I wouldn't do such a thing, basically because I figure the server will be the one who ends up screwed, not the restaurant owner who is the object of my wrath.

I'm an honest fellow, but I get so very annoyed with restaurants. So annoyed. It's remarkable that restaurants are so unwilling to make it simple and fair for groups to pay. Surely many restaurant get groups all the time that want to split checks! Restaurateurs should all be forced to take the Customer class at SOM.

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