You know how in the Harry Potter universe people can use the Resurrection Stone to bring back people from the dead? Only it’s not really them, it’s like a sad, half-life version of the person that once was? Such is the case with Salt Bae, a viral meme that brought joy to our timelines for countless hours of scrolling, until we pulled him out of the internet and into real life, only to realize what a huge mistake it actually was.
Salt Bae, who you might not recognize unless he’s holding his arm up in a way that would signal he’s waiting to catch a frisbee on the quad, hasn’t had an easy go of it outside the internet.
First, there were the terrible reviews of his New York City Steakhouse Nusr-Et, then there was that time Don Jr. snarfed down some of that rubbery steak in person, and now he’s being accused of failing to pay out tips fairly to his employees.
Four former employees are set to receive a $230,000 settlement, according to the Daily News, after allegedly being fired for asking Salt Bae questions about tips and being told a document showing how tips were distributed was confidential. “Salt Bae should adhere and learn to respect labor laws and regulations. You simply cannot do whatever you like, regardless of your fame or economic status.” former employee Batuhan Yunkus said.
While it is true that no meme is above the law, it also leaves one to wonder if he felt he could get away with this because we literally made him famous for… sprinkling salt? According to this Observer review, one dining experience at Nusr-Et can run you upwards of $1,400. If anyone out there has $1,400 to blow on a dining experience hoping to watch someone spill salt over themselves, I would gladly invite you to my kitchen at 2 a.m., just please don’t put it on Instagram.