It has been a trying weekend at the restaurant, and as I contemplate one more shift before some blessed days off it occurs to me that if diners abided by a few simple rules the entire experience would be a lot more enjoyable. For us, anyway.

1) If you should hear the crash of plates or glasses as one of our harrassed and overworked staff momentarily loses their grip (or possibly is caused to by a thoughtless customer), do NOT call attention to with cries of “wahey” or “sack the juggler!”. This does not make you a hearty bon viveur, an amiable observer of life’s vicissitudes. It makes you a cunt.

2) If a waiter comes bearing a tray of drinks, do NOT start taking them off the tray where they have been so carefully balanced, as it tends to lead to 1.

3) Similarly, do NOT try tidying up the plates and stacking them for us. We’re better at it than you.

4) When ordering garlic bread, DO order it in the style of Peter Kaye. Garlic? Bread? We just love that, and at no point have we ever heard that before. Bonus points if you follow up with cheese? cake? you brain-dead parrot.

5) Do NOT wander off from your table to the bar to order drinks. See that guy there in the waistcoat? The one with the order pad and the pen? That’s a waiter. Don’t see him? You’re in a Wacky Warehouse.

6) DO ask us half an hour after last orders for a taxi. We see it as our bounden responsibility to get you home safe and sound, and very much enjoy negotiating with surly minicab firms at one in the morning.

7) Do NOT, however, ask us for more drinks whilst you’re waiting. Remember half an hour ago, when I told you the bar was shutting? What did you think I meant by that?
And whose fault, precisely, is it that you don’t have a taxi booked? Whose?

8) When in a large party DO pay for all your drinks individually as you go. In no way is that a massive fucking nuisance. Better yet, when the bill comes, why not spend half an hour arguing over who had what, scrooge? After all, that Garlic? Bread? costs at least a whole pound.

9) Waitresses love attention from drunken men. Make sure to tell her how pretty she is at every possible opportunity (in fact, without wishing to give the game away, most of my waitrsses fancy every single man who walks through the door).

10) Finally, there is no reason whatsoever to turn up when you say you will. We only do table plans for a laugh, anyway. The kitchen won’t be at all bothered if fifty meals come on at the same time because all the seven thirty bookings turn up at eight. The ovens, like the TARDIS have an infinite amount of space inside.