Among the rough and ready tests of character, this seems a very good one, not infallible but close to it, accounting for the occasional hard day, bad headache, annoying companions: “The way people treat restaurant staff is, I think, a kind of poker tell, revealing a person’s character in as long as it takes to say: ‘I’ll have the sea bass’.” Writing in The Guardian, Rachel Cooke continues :

A man (or woman) who is actively unpleasant to waiters is best avoided. Ditto those who patronise them. Just as bad, though, are people who treat waiters as though they’re invisible. This is not, as these cretins seem to think, a sign of metropolitan sophistication. Do this, and you might as well be wearing a T-shirt that says: “I’m an over-privileged baboon: cold, ruthless, rude and rather stupid.”

The biblically literate will recognize this as an application of “whatever you did for one of the least of these.” Least, in this case, because they have to take it.

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