Not sure if this turned into Professional Darwinism or not, as we didn't stick around to find out.
My friend and I were working an outdoor event this weekend (and it rained ALL weekend, and was COLD). Sunday afternoon, the skies opened and it rained harder than I have ever seen it rain in my life. It rained so much that a couple of the parking areas flooded. It rained so much that we were wondering if we would ever be able to leave after the event closed. We were cold, and wet by the time we got out of there an hour after closing.
So anyway, we finally got back to the motel after several miles of white-knuckled driving (separate cars). After a couple of minutes of changing into clean dry clothes, we decided we were starving for HOT FOOD (cheese, crackers, and summer sausage only go so far!). We were staying in a small town where everything was closed on Sunday, so we ended up driving a couple of exits down the interstate. I had remembered that there was a restaurant attached to a hotel at this exit, and remembered it as being very good.
We walked in at 7:40 pm, to overhear the person at the front desk snipping into the phone: "Well, you could get a to-go order, but we close in 10 minutes!" After a couple of minutes of this, the manager came out and took us to a booth. I asked if they were closing at 8, and if it was okay for us to be there, and he assured us that it was fine, and he'd get us served.
After a couple of minutes of looking at the menu (which was... uninspiring), we still hadn't been asked for drink orders. At this point, the woman who had been snipping on the phone started into a diatribe in front of the whole restaurant: "We close at 8! Not 8:15, not 8:10, not 8:05! 8!!!!!"
At this point, I looked at my friend, looked at the menu, closed the menu, and told my friend that I just couldn't eat there. We left quietly. When I got out of the door, I was shaking and apologizing to my friend, and said that I just couldn't eat at a place like that, where I didn't feel welcome. She agreed. That was the first time I had ever left a restaurant after being seated.
We ended up at another restaurant at that same exit, and the experience couldn't have been more different. We were welcomed immediately, seated promptly, drink orders taken right away, and had AMAZING food and service. This place also closed at 8, but the waitress never made us feel rushed. I could have tried everything on the menu, as it all sounded AWESOME. We were out of there shortly after 8, and left a large tip for treating us so well.
Both of us agreed that we made the right choice to leave the original restaurant, and wondered if the manager had talked to the loud-mouth about her behavior in front of customers. That woman was just so offensive and mean. There were several tables of families with kids at that restaurant, and I can't believe that she went off like that. I doubt she was fired, but jeesh, I'll bet the manager was pretty unhappy with her after we left...