Who doesn't love packing their kids into the old family roadster and heading out to a nice family dinner. The kids love it, parents love it, it's a great excuse not to cook, really, it's all around a whole lot of fun for everyone involved. Or, should I say, MOST everyone involved. Everyone loves a family dinner ... except the waitstaff.

Here are a number of ways you, too, can annoy the waitstaff at a family dinner:

  • If you have a child who starts crying, tune it out and let them cry. You've been hearing it for years, and misery loves company. Now that you have an audience, they can enjoy it as much as you have!
  • No matter what you order, when it arrives, insist that it's incorrect. Change your order if you have to after it arrives so you can send it back and have it remade.
  • Don't lump together your drink refills. Send him back each and every time one person's glass reaches the 80 percent gone mark.
  • Make sure to allow the kids to play with all the condiments while you wait for your entrees. Salt and pepper mountains can be mixed with a ketchup and creamer river to create a lovely spring scene right there on the table! And after entrees are ready, demand the waitstaff clean the table for you.
  • Insist upon knowing each ingredient in every single thing on the menu -- not because you have allergies, but because it's a way to test your server's intelligence. Ask what each ingredient is in the "seasoning" in the "seasoned pork" -- and ask for the spelling of each of the spices. The waitstaff is certain to know it all off-hand -- this is a family diner after all.
  • Make sure that when you place your order, you do it in the most scattered possible fashion. Adding and subtracting ingredients from the menu is a must, and bonus points if he's not writing it down. Get as complicated as possible if he's hoping to hold it all in his head. Then complain and demand a free meal once your order arrives -- even if it's right.
  • When he brings you the check, immediately ask if he can split it three ways. When he gets back, ask if he can recombine two of them. If the kids haven't started screaming yet, you can always insist that he combined the WRONG two when he returns.

What other ways can you think of to torture the waitstaff at family dinners?