Welcome to the New New York Restaurant

Julio Vincent Gambuto
3 min readJun 16, 2022
Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

Welcome. It’s great to have you here. We have you down for a table for four in one of our outdoor open-air street-side cabins. Are you all here? Oh, good, you got our texts to confirm your table. Right this way.

No, I’m sorry, we have no tables available indoors. We have a table inside at — let me check — 11:30pm, if you want to wait and eat dinner then. You did, you had a choice of standard seating, high-top at the bar, our sidewalk sheds, or the taxi-touch street shanties. You must have hit the wrong button on the app.

No — oh, how cute — we don’t have menus any more, sorry. Paper is dangerous. Just snap a pic of that barcode on the table. Make sure you click “dinner menu” not “lunch menu,” or our waiter will scold you publicly. Your phone is dead? So sorry. Does anyone else in your party have a phone? Oh, good, you can read the menu off their screen. No, we don’t have a charger. There is no electricity in our outdoor viral igloos.

Just so you know, you only have the table for 90 minutes. If you had more friends willing to join you for dinner, we could have given it to you for 15 minutes more. Please don’t feel rushed, but I will be setting a timer in the back and glaring at you when you reach the 60-minute mark. We’re happy to give you other delicate reminders. We’ve instructed our servers to remove your glass as soon as you have less than one ounce of liquid in it. And to take your plate when you’re down to the remnant vegetables. If that doesn’t work, I will approach the table, interrupt you sans apology, and say something…subtle…like, “Your time is up. Get out.”

Yes, that is technically salmon. We are now serving half-portions and charging double. A “sliver” of Atlantic salmon fillet is actually much healthier for you than a “piece,” you gluttonous pig. No, we don’t serve bread anymore. That would temporarily satiate your hunger and you wouldn’t order appetizers while you wait an hour for entree. Oh, we cannot find enough kitchen staff who want to thanklessly toil for $6/hour. Nobody wants to work these days. Lazy, lazy. Yes, the appetizers are on the “nibbles” menu. They’re all $23 each.

Here is your check. Oh, don’t worry, we have a handheld supercomputer we can bring to the table so you can tap your card. It’s contactless. Fun. Modern. That will be $439. No, tip is not included. You have three options — 30%, 25%, or 20%. We still pay our wait staff in leftovers and shame, so please tip well. No, 15% is no longer an option, you cheap fuck.

We hope you had a great experience. We’ll email you incessantly for the next 24 hours so you fill out our online survey. Please come again. We missed you.

Isn’t it great to be eating out again?

Julio Vincent Gambuto

Author of “Please Unsubscribe, Thanks!” // Now available in US and UK // juliovincent.com