Indio, California: We dine out quite a bit. Over the years I have found a few things restaurants and servers do that totally tick me off. These bad habits are so ridiculously obvious, I can’t believe restaurants allow such service from their staff. Maybe I am just too picky?

Here goes…

1. I really dislike it when I barely sit my backside down on the chair and you ask if I would like a drink. I know, I know, you are probably shocked that a lush such as myself would complain about this – but give me 3.2 seconds to get situated and have a look-see at the menu.

2. Do not over-fill the salad plate! I hate it when one touch of the fork to a salad causes the lettuce to explode all over the table. Either serve less salad, or use a larger plate!

3. It is so extremely tacky when you say “keep your knife and fork” between courses. Absolutely makes me want to stab you with my fork! Just kidding. I think. Where am I supposed to “keep” my used cutlery? On the table? Hold it in my hand? Come on! Is there a dire fork shortage? No. I do not want to keep my salad fork and knife for my entree. Take the dirty cutlery away on the finished salad/appetizer plate and bring me a clean place setting. Preferably before my entree arrives.

4. Do not bring my dinner before I have finished my appetizer or salad. Don’t hover over our table with plates of hot food with a confused look on your face. I am not going to help you.

5. Do not serve bread without giving me a bread plate. Where am I supposed to put my slice of bread? On the table? Blech.

6. Do not remove plates from finished diners while other people at the table are still eating. Rude. Rude. Rude. Stop doing this!

Alright – I have finished my rant to restaurants and restaurant staff… and will add this little note to my fellow diners:

7. A baseball hat is still a hat. Remove your hat when inside a building. A restaurant counts as a building. Are you up to bat? Covering left field? No. You are eating a meal. Remove your hat like a gentleman or you look like a total goober.

Until my next update, I remain, your opinionated correspondent.

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