There’s one thing you need to watch out for when dining out in France: your ego. Be careful not to trip over it.
Don’t despair though: the short shrift you get in France from wait staff (compared to say England, Australia or America) is actually a bit of a relief – a much-needed ego check, even.
A video has recently emerged on Instagram capturing this difference with mirth. Posted by bilingual comedian Tatty Macleod (@tatty_macleod), it’s worth a watch.
Watch Tatty Macleod show the difference between French and English waiters in the video below
The video shows Tatty pretending to be an English waiter apologising profusely to guests, saying: “sorry to keep you waiting” and asking: “how are we?”
It then cuts to a French waiter (also Tatty) in a similar scenario, yelling at guests: “yes yes, I’m on my way, madam. I’ve seen you.”
Then she imitates a French waiter responding to a complaint about a pizza.
“What do you mean it’s burnt?”
“It’s not burnt. It’s homemade artisanal dough cooked the Italian way and this is how it comes out. It comes out charred. What do you want me to say. It’s like that.”
Another follow up video explores a few more funny themes.
Some great quotes include a French waiter telling diners “no, no sorry madam, the terrace is full – for two – next to the toilets.”
Another comes when a French waiter is asked what’s in the salad.
“It’s a salad – whatever’s in a salad.”
She then mimics the response a tourist might get when they complain that a restaurant is out of steak or souffle.
“You shouldn’t come at the end of lunch service.”
As for vegans, the attitude is very Bourdain-esque.
“If you enjoy eating grass the champ de mars is opposite.”
Commenters appeared to love it, writing remarks like: “hahahaha so true” and “this truly killed me.”
Though Tatty didn’t post this necessarily with the view of saying French hospitality workers are better (it was more to poke fun at both sides of the channel), we reckon it illustrates an important point.
Though many tourists find the French style of customer service abrasive, others love how it keeps things ~real~.
Who wants to live in a fake world where the customer is always right, anyway? Unless you’re someone who needs their ego massaged at every turn, it’s a strange thing to wish for.
Food for thought.