How do you deal with overly chatty bar staff?
We had a pub lunch, and the barman kept butting on our conversation. I'm sure he thought it was being friendly, but we wanted a quiet meal, not a lesson in local history. What would you do in this situation?
Usually I would say Tip Him! When I worked in Wales, I found many wait-staff less than friendly or personable. I was extremely grumpy with the general public, and my bosses were having me give demonstrations to the other staff on how to be friendly! I like a chatty waiter/waitress, but if they're becoming a part of an already established conversation with your table, then I agree, that is a bit of a line-crosser.
I have no idea what I would do in that situation. I would probably be sure to just stop talking when they came around, or, unfortunately, lower my voice when talking so they couldn't listen in.
In reality, what should be done is just a polite reminder to the staff that you're having a conversation with your companion, which is between you two. But I can't say that I would actually do that. I'm a wuss!
Speaking from my experience as a bartender many years ago, I can offer this. An experienced bartender "should" be able to read the body language and sense if the customer is looking for conversation, or would rather be left alone. In the case of two or more customers who are obviously part of a group, it is better to wait to be invited into their conversation than forcing the issue and butting in.
That of course is just my opinion.
Turns me off comepletely to be ignored by barstaff , when its intentional ...its so obvious ! If you aren't personable .Quit now !
Lord knows, I just spent over two hours (tonight) in a local bar listening to the barman tell me all about the weird online free games he plays, not to mention the various free online comics/book type series he reads. Nice guy, but really doesn't know how mind bogglingly boring this topic is to someone not into the same thing. I am just one of those people who finds it really hard to be rude enough to say "please stop now, you are boring me rigid", so instead I just do the polite thing and nod, smile and make vaguely appropriate comments in what I hope are the right places.
I very politely tell them that we are having a private conversation, or if I'm alone, that I'm not in a conversational mood with too many very private things weighing on my mind. This works 90% of the time and if worded well won't offend them.
If this doesn't get the point across I move, usually to a different bar.
Very sensible. We felt a bit trapped as this guy was the owner, his daughter was cooking our meal. Luckily the food was excellent, but we won't be going back.
For some reason owners tend to be the worst offenders, probably since they can't be reprimanded for wasting time. He was probably just bored but that is no excuse.
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