Foodies worldwide should all remember that restaurant workers are watching our every move and silently judging us with every order we make. So, maybe...just maybe you should skip on that third order of calamari. The people in these stories just ordered two more and decided to just face the consequences.
(Content has been edited for clarity)
"I have a friend who was called the garbage disposal back in high school. He is a normal-sized fellow but he could put food away. We went to a place called 'Mongolian Bowl' in Denver for their all you can eat bowl deal. It was like $12. We both started out and I stopped after two bowls. My friend just kept going, getting bowl after bowl. When he was on his eighth bowl, I got my third. About this time the chef (and I think owner) stood in the doorway of the kitchen just mad dogging me hard. My buddy had his back to him but the chef was ticked. After about three hours and around 14 bowls of noodles and fillings, we finally left."
"I used to work for a fast food type Italian restaurant. We had a family meal made to generously serve four people. You got a bucket of spaghetti, a container with a dozen meatballs, and eight breadsticks.
This lady would come in the drive-through and order a family spaghetti with meatballs, an extra dozen breadsticks, and a large Diet Coke. Then she'd sit in the parking lot and devour it.
She was so large, the driver's seat in her car was removed, and it looked like she had a specially extended steering wheel that let her drive from the back seat.
This meal was nearly 7,000 calories. She demolished it in one sitting.
-Spaghetti with meatballs: One serving was 920 calories (x4 = 3,680 calories)
-Bread stick: 150 calories each. (x20 = = 3,000 calories).
-Large Diet Coke: Zero calories =rationalization."
"I worked at Olive Garden years ago, and they would occasionally run a never-ending pasta bowl deal (that also came with unlimited breadsticks and salad). There was a family that would always come in when the deal was on. Mom, dad, kids and grandma, all of them.
They would arrive at opening (11 am) and stay through dinner, so five to six hours of eating. They were awful to serve, unpleasant and, of course, a lot of work for a relatively small bill. They all mixed packets of butter into their pasta sauce and grandma only drank Diet Coke mixed with Sprite, with lemons on the side.
Anyway, one Saturday they were in there doing their thing and I guess the father hit his limit and puked all over the table. Finally, the manager saw his chance and banned them from ever coming back."
"I'm not a restaurant employee but this story still applies. You know those Chinese donuts? Well, one time at our favorite Chinese buffet, they ran out. It was at a weird time, so it was just me and my friends and one other table. Both tables were done eating, but man we just wanted a few Chinese donuts as 'dessert' and the waitress said that she would be bringing more out in a second.
So, she did and this is a buffet so it is a huge serving platter of them. The other table, in unison, gets up, speed walks over, and then proceeds to pile up huge plates until they had taken almost every donut. We were like, are they kidding right now?! It was three people. Then we sat and watched them just destroy all of the plates of donuts while we sat there donut-less. Then we just ended up asking for the bill and the waitress apologized and we had to awkwardly say it was okay when the other table was like, right there still destroying the donuts.
It isn't even that good of a story but for some reason, it is so vivid even 10 years after the fact."
"This family of five incredibly large people came in. Comically, like in a cartoon when a huge man dwarfs the chair, the dad sat on a chair and the legs bend and groan and shudder. He was large enough where you wonder if you have enough food on the buffet, or if you can make enough food to keep these people happy, or if you should be charging double, nay, triple the cost of the regular buffet. Ponderously, the father said, 'Only five of us today,' like it's some kind of noble gift that the rest of their family have not graced us with their presence.
'This way please,' the captain quakingly said as he attempted to navigate the gravitational well of human kin, and maneuvered the behemoths into an open 8-top. 'Your waiter will be revolving this way shortly', and he scattered to the winds like a child with a stolen lollipop when the parents come 'round.
It says something about this family that they didn't even sit (perch?) upon the furniture but rather proceeded directly towards the buffet line. I can only describe the following scenes as a mix of Cannibal Holocaust and Wolf Creek, with the plot of Primer, mixed with the animation of Polar Express. I've seen juggling acts that used fewer plates per person. Honestly, if this family was more appropriately sized, or the facility more appropriately sized for them, then I would hire them as waiters because their ability to hold multiple plates heaped with a smorgasbord of food defied physics. I can only presume that the gravitational effect of their corpulence somehow perverted the laws of nature and they had somehow taken advantage of this by placing dishes in geosynchronous orbits around their tropics of cancer.
The feeding began with such revel that I had only seen in a video or at pig troughs, but with more noise. The utensils clattered and snicked across platters, saliva slobbered, communication ceased in the pursuit of their consummation with food. I would say that it was like a train wreck that you couldn't look aside from, but it was more a perversion of nature that drew your strange eyes. Thank God the host was on point, waiters had to start rotating past this gustatory nightmare on timers in order to truck away from the dishes. Clean plates and silverware by the servers decreased faster than the economy plummeted in 2008. Silence descended on the rest of the restaurant as the torrid scene proceeded.
Then, with a gasp and a groan, their child of indeterminate age, girth, and increasing growth leans back dramatically and said, 'Oh, Ma! I got THE MEAT SWEATS.'"
"This was about five years ago. There was this breakfast taco joint back in my hometown and we would always stop by after football practice on the way to school (our football stadium wasn't near campus). So this taco joint offered these massive tacos which were basically three normal-sized tacos combined. We called them horse man parts because these macho tacos were literally the length of my forearm and about the girth of my wrist and I'm a very averaged size guy. I usually put down two normal tacos and was really full and only been able to put down a full big one once.
Well, one of my buddies ordered four of these big tacos and proceeded to slam down three of them before our first period even started, and crushed the fourth in the second period. He looked like he was pregnant, and started complaining that his stomach hurt because he'd eaten too much. I was in utter awe because I'd never seen someone put down that much food before and somehow this same guy isn't overweight now."
"My niece, age 7, went to one of those buffet lines and emptied them of shrimp. Just took the entire platter and put it on her plate. We're talking enough to feed a dozen adults, and she could barely take the plate back to the table because the pile of shrimp was so high. Her dad, angry that she had been left alone at the buffet, said, 'If you take it, you have to eat it. You have to eat that entire plate of shrimp and nothing else!'
So my niece went to town on several pounds of peel and eat shrimp, and actually ate the entire plate. She didn't feel very well, though. I forgot if she later threw up or not, but her dad was stunned that she finished it all."
"This wasn't at an all you can eat buffet, which I think makes the story worse. I was up in Maine on vacation at a lake house. The lakehouse was owned by my significant other's mother and is not in a touristy town. It's in a fairly small town that's mostly hunters, underemployed people, and antique shops. Anyone familiar with the area probably has a picture of the town.
Anyway, we went to breakfast at our favorite place in town. A fairly normal looking guy in his early 60's walked in. He ordered four full-sized entrees. I'm talking about breakfast stack entrees - pancakes, waffles, french toast, eggs, hashbrowns, and meat. On top of the regular entrees, he ordered:
-An extra dozen poached eggs
-An extra side of corned beef hash
-Four sides of toast
-Two glass of orange juice
In the time it took our table of four to eat our normal entrees, he demolished all of his food. By the time we were leaving, it was the time when they started serving their lunch menu. He then proceeds to order two full lunch entrees to go. I couldn't believe what I was watching."
"I used to work at a Waffle House and we were dumb enough to run an all-you-can-eat special for $7.99.
I saw this kid, who looked about 17 years old, waddle in through the doors. In the span of about an hour, he ate three cheeseburgers, a triple order of hash browns, two or three waffles, a bacon egg and cheese sandwich, like five eggs, so much toast, a bowl of grits, and some other stuff I forgot (I think he ordered everything but the steak).
I watched him through the window after he walked out and saw him throw up all over our bushes outside.
We stopped doing that special after less than a month."
"I witnessed a somewhat scrawny young guy eat about four humongous plates of food at a Golden Corral. I'm talking plates piled high. I had to go to the washroom, so I went into the bathroom and heard someone gagging and puking. I could see the shoes and pants under the stall.
So, I finished up and got out of there. Not a minute later do I see the scrawny kid come out, same shoes and pants so I know it was him, and head up to the dessert bar where he piled up two large plates of brownies, cookies, custard, and a very large bowl of ice cream.
After he ate that, he headed back toward the bathroom. Poor guy."
"I was eating at a Hooters for a friend's 18th birthday because they wouldn't let us into Chuck E.Cheese. There were two men there who both just kept ordering meal after meal. The poor waitress was only serving them (she was also wearing a T-shirt and jeans, not the regular Hooters uniform) and running back and forth like a mad woman. They were there before we got there and were still ordering after we left. They ordered at least four full meals each while we were there. Obviously, they were food addicts. I wish restaurants were like bars and could stop serving you when you've clearly had enough. I wish our society would treat that sort of thing like a real addiction and send them to rehab."
"I was 13 and I remember a CiCi's Pizza opened up near my house. It was a Pizza buffet place and they made several different types of pizza.
They also had these amazing Cinnamon desserts. All the pizza and desserts were on large pizza pans on a warm plate and as the customer, you would just choose a few slices of pizza and go find a seat to eat.
One day, my friend and I rode our bikes there for lunch and we got in line behind this very large family. There was one pepperoni pizza and I was waiting in line to grab a slice. One of them in front of me just grabbed the whole pizza pan and took it back to their table.
Disappointed, I grabbed a cheese slice and went to sit down. After a few slices of pizza, I wanted dessert. I was waiting in line again and getting to the end for the cinnamon desserts. Right when I went to grab one, the same person came out of nowhere and grabbed the whole tray.
I haven't been to a buffet since."
"When I was a high schooler, my friends and I were at a Pizza Hut lunch buffet and witnessed this woman just devouring plate after plate of chocolate pudding from the salad bar. Nothing else, just pudding. We were baffled and our waiter overheard us and whispered, 'Are you guys talking about the pudding lady?' When we said yes, he walked into the kitchen and back out with a piece of paper that said 'pudding lady' and had seven tally marks on it. He explained that the waitstaff has been counting how many times she has done this.
It was so bizarre. Like out of everything at the buffet, why pudding?!"
"I wasn't an employee but witnessed this at a Hometown Buffet (aka The Pig Trough, as my family referred to it). A woman was rolling down the aisle carrying two of those amber colored plastic tumblers that buffets usually stock. I couldn't quite figure out what she had in them, as the bottom half of the tumbler (about three inches) was a very dark brown color, and the top was a lighter color.
As she got closer, I realized it was 'chocolate milk' aka about two cups of chocolate sauce mixed with two cups of milk. YIKES."
"I saw this at the local Chinese buffet several years ago. There was a couple dressed as stereotypical artists, both wearing black shirts, black tights and black berets and both were really skinny. They were getting a lot of plates and seemed really on guard.
After watching them for a while I noticed they had two black garbage bags under the table, and they were filling one with all of the crappy buffet shrimp (shell on and sprinkled with sugar so people wouldn't eat it) and the other with egg rolls/chicken balls/breaded octopus and whatever else.
After paying they yanked the two bags out from under the table and hightailed it out of the emergency exit."
"I once saw a family of four eat at a fairly expensive buffet, their bill came up to about a $100. The eldest of the family, who I think was the mother, complained about the price to her family and said she would never eat here again.
She was the one that pigged out on everything, there was even a good size spill on her shirt.
Another employee told me that that woman went there every day when they opened and usually spent $20-$30 each time."
"My dad used to be a manager at a hotel with a buffet. At the end of the line, there were some fake desserts made of Crisco, with a sign that said: 'Desserts made to order, please ask your server.'
Well, you guessed it, an older lady picked up a Crisco ice cream and ate the whole thing. She called the manager over, my dad, and complained that 'the ice cream wasn't cold enough.'
To which my dad said, with a straight face, 'Sorry ma'am, I'll bring you a new one.' She was happy with the real dessert, paid her bill, and left."
"In high school, I worked at a golf course that had a buffet in the clubhouse. I once saw two guys come in after playing the front nine, they looked like they had one too many drinks and were very unaware of what mixing drinks, the hot sun, and physical activity can do to your internal systems. Anyway, they both came in, continued to drink and each ate roughly the equivalent of a whole 16-inch pizza (in about 20 minutes). They paid and left quickly, and one of them vomited into an oversized golf bag filled with those plushy stuffed animal club covers. Security showed up to take them off the grounds and they tried to fight because they 'paid for 18 holes.' Apparently, they thought after all that, they had the stamina to play golf for two more hours."
"A client arranged for a football match for me and my team for doing some good work. It was a great game (we lost the game badly by the way) and it was a good opportunity for us to interact with the client and his team in an informal setting. Everything was going well, we were drinking and having fun. Then the client ordered some pizzas and everyone lost it. I was chatting with him and I saw my entire team heading towards the door. As soon as the pizza boy came to the door, they just went for it. Freaking savages, they ate 7 out of 10 pizzas. I was standing there with the client, frozen. He asked what was taking so long for the pizzas, I said they have arrived. We went there to see the mess and just a few slices.
That's the most embarrassing moment of my professional career so far (which wasn't of my doing). My blood still boils whenever I think about it."