It was bad enough when three men in her section decided to skip out on a $96 bill, but it got a whole lot worse for waitress Suzanne Parratt when she was subsequently fired from her job for refusing to cover the unpaid tab.
The 31-year-old server had been employed at the Pig N Whistle in Midtown Manhatan since August without incident.
Then came last Tuesday's dine-and-dash during the evening hours of a hectic double shift.
"As soon as I realized, I went into full blown shock and then a state of panic knowing that I'd be held responsible for their $96 tab," Parratt told Gothamist.
She tried to explain the situation to her manager, Eugene Wilson, but says she was immediately slapped with a threat: Either she covers the check or her coworkers will.
"I believe he said this because it was relayed to him that I was not intending to pay the tab, and he wanted to guilt me into it or he'd make my coworkers pay for it," she is quoted as saying.
Parratt took her story to Reddit in the hopes that the three men who bolted might turn out to be users of the social news site.
Though she didn't find the culprits, she did come away with lots of great advice on what she should do next.
Like file a complaint with the Division of Labor Standards, which she did.
"Your employer cannot make any deductions or require payment out of pocket for any losses or damages," The DOLS said in response — a fact which surprised Parratt.
"It was repeatedly drilled into our minds that if a customer were to ever dash on a check, that the server is responsible for the tab," she told Gothamist, noting that this practice was "not uncommon in the restaurant industry."
Though she provided the site with a paystub to prove her employment at Pig N Whistle, Wilson told Gothamist he wasn't sure someone named Suzanne had worked at the restaurant, and denied firing anyone recently.
Meanwhile, Suzanne is moving forward with possible legal action against the establishment, and will be following up on myriad job leads she received from the folks at Reddit.
[photos via Google+, Google Maps]