When did the service industry stop trying?

I recently moved here from another province and on the advice of a local went to this funky little breakfast place. It was so crowded and tiny but was supposed to be soooo gooood. The waitress said yes she could get us a table for four (we had out of town guests with us) but it would not be for about 30 minutes. We said ok to the wait,and the waitress said we could place our order now which we thought was kind of neat and efficient. We placed our orders and the counter girl who took the order promptly rang up the bill and made us pay! Really? So you have my money......your machine asked me to tip you which I had to do because I had no cash.....yet I have no table.....no food...no clue what the service will be like or if it will be worthy of a 10%, 15% or 20+% or even no tip. You tell me I can wait outside but if I go anywhere...even for 5 minutes you may give away our table. So the restaurant caters to itself and we grovel for whatever scrap we can get , oh and please take our money please if you would be so kind. —East Coaster

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