It seems this column always ends up with a focus on crime. I can only expect that to become more common as the holidays approach and crime rates rise. This week’s stories are not only about crime, but the general stupidity of those who commit it. These people pictured themselves as modern day D.B. Coopers only to find themselves caught. A word to all criminals: If you are not smart enough to talk yourself out of robbing a restaurant, you are probably not smart enough to get away with it. When you are caught, you can count on me to enjoy mocking you in the hours I am not working hard at an actual job.
I like to begin each week with the most written about story of the week. Grandma getting beat up by a security guard at Hooters is easily the headline of the week. The grandma in this case actually went to jail for the incident and is now suing everyone involved. The fact that it involves Hooters makes for good headlines. The fact that Hooters has cameras all over the restaurant makes for a really good video. This is one to check out. (Oak Lawn, IL)
Restaurant scams are a dime a dozen. Most of them are not very good. This might be the worst of them all. Not only does this guest use an intermediary to order 300 meals, but they add the Craig’s list scam into the mix. Legitimate people do not ask for you to send them money that they give you. This owner wants to warn people. Someone might want to warn the owner to avoid emails from Nigeria as well. (Spartanburg County, SC)
Theft of intellectual property is a crime. Using women in tiny outfits to draw in customers in not intellectual property. So Twin Peaks suing Grand Tetons is not much of a case on the surface. There are some details that make it more than the average case though. Otherwise, I think it will make a good precedent for the serpent from the Garden of Eden to sue everyone else who has ever used a woman to encourage a man to make a bad decision. (Dallas, TX)
Carrying a concealed weapon into a restaurant will draw attention. You will probably be asked to show a permit. Even if you have a permit, it is best not to smell like marijuana when the police ask for your permit. It will probably get your car searched. (Parma, OH)
I would never consider myself an expert at crime. I have learned a few things about it from writing this column. The first tip I would have to a prospective criminal is to not do it. The second would be, like real estate, the three most important factors are: location, location, and location. This tip would have prevented someone from robbing a place called Wild Hogs Roadhouse. (Moraine, OH)
If I had another tip, it would be to invest in a quick get away vehicle. For those who can’t afford it, at least make sure it will start. This guy did not follow my advice. I suppose it was relatively easy to catch the guy who left his car parked awkwardly behind the restaurant. He would have been better off taking a taxi. (Cromwell, CT)
A while back I wrote a post on why it is a bad idea to date co-workers. I wrote it for restaurant folks, not for criminals. I suppose the same facts apply though. Take for instance this couple that thought they could get away with a staged robbery at the restaurant the wife worked at. It did not take long for officers to catch on to their plan. (LaFayette, GA)
Love can make you do some pretty ridiculous things. Especially at 18 years old. It might make you fall for a 37-year-old Jack in the Box manager. It might also make you empty out the safe for him. It might also land you in jail for doing so. So many different levels of wrong in this one story. (Ada, OK)
Even those stories have some semblance, albeit twisted, of a romantic ending. This guy lost the roof over his head. Madly in love he signed over his house and gave his sweetheart another $100k to start her restaurant. She took off with his, and apparently a few other folks, money. Not exactly “took off with” since she is still living in his house. (Bakersfield, CA)
There have been more developments in last weeks story about (alleged) racism at McFadden’s. The company has struck back saying that the bartender’s hours were cut back because he wasn’t very friendly. I probably wouldn’t be friendly either if I were an African American man whose boss sent texts like, “We don’t want black people, we are a white bar.” Meanwhile the bartender is trying to get the case certified as a class action and has found a few other restaurants owned by the owners. This case keeps getting stranger. (Philadelphia, PA)
This week’s Chef Justus Award for the restaurant hero goes to Chef Chris Faulkner of Disneyland’s Storyteller’s Restaurant. When Disneyland invited a group of moms who blog to visit the park, Shelby Barone was a bit concerned. Her son suffers from severe food allergies and she was worried he wouldn’t be able to eat at the park. This is when Chef Faulkner came to the rescue and called her to design a menu her son could eat. Maybe it was the post yesterday on food allergies or the fact that I am becoming soft in my old age, but I think something got stuck in my eye while I read this story. (Orange County, CA)
This weeks soon to be renamed award for the restaurant jerk goes to the Police Departments of the Greater Charleston Area. I started out poking fun at “The Great Chinese Restaurant Robbery Spree of 2010”, but this has gone on too long. Nearly 20 restaurants have been robbed since August 1st. They are finally starting a task force to address this. These restaurant owners pay taxes and deserve the same level of protection as any other citizens. If we have learned anything about restaurant criminals from this column it is that they are not very smart. Congrats law enforcement officials in South Carolina, you have made them look brilliant. (Charleston, SC)
I am legitimately pissed off over that last story. Time to be distracted by the scoreboard.
The South Atlantic and East North Central divisions both scored well this week. This keeps them solidly in first and second place going into the end of the year. The West South Central dropped further back. This is going to be decided in December.
This week the world gives us a story via the United Kingdom. It is a sorted tale of sexual harassment as told by a reporter seemingly fixated on the fact that the victim was homosexual. Read the story and you will know what I mean. While I feel sympathy for the victim, I also have worked in places where all of that would be considered a standard lunch shift. The points go to the US. USA:8 World:5
That is all for this week. Join us next week for another batch of weird restaurant stories. In the meantime feel free to check out all of the past stories by clicking the “weird restaurant stories” tab at the top of the page.