Red Lobster Comps Widow's Check on Anniversary

Image for article titled Red Lobster Comps Widow's Check on Anniversary
Image for article titled Red Lobster Comps Widow's Check on Anniversary

Red Lobster is in the news, and surprisingly, it's not as a punch line, but for doing something that's actually pretty objectively adorable.

Reddit user Coppin-it-washin-it's parents used to go to Red Lobster every year on their anniversary. As corny as that might seem to a lot of people, that's a pretty cute tradition when you realize they kept it going for 31 years. After his father died in March, he, his mother, and his sister all went out on the following anniversary to keep the tradition going. When their server asked if they were there for a special occasion, his sister explained the whole deal. The server didn't make an obviously big deal out of it — until it came time to pay, when they were given the above note. If for whatever reason you can't read the image, here's the full text:

"We are sorry to hear about your husbands passing, but we appreciate your loyalty in spending 31 years of your anniversary with us. For our appreciation your meal is on us! We look forward to spending your next anniversary with us!

Sincerely, Red Lobster and your server, Taylor"

When another Jezebel staffer sent me this, my initial reaction was "you're not going to get my heart to grow two sizes this day, Mark." But it's hard not to find it heartwarming when the server and manager involved went out of their way to do a nice thing for its own sake.

For those of you doubting the authenticity of the whole thing: Darden Restaurants (Red Lobster's parent company) confirmed that it happened when the local news came calling. For anyone claiming this is just a publicity stunt (because I've now been doing this long enough to know how the internet thinks); please stop talking, for now and always. No one cares. Crawl back to your miseryhole and just for the love of God let us have a nice thing for once.


Emma Golddigger

Cute story! Anyone want to hear a less cute story - which hopefully makes sense - about my mom being awful? Here goes:

When my mom's dad died in October, she followed a Jewish tradition where you can't do a bunch of things (including watching movies, going to parties, listening to music, etc.) because you're in mourning for a year. Another fact about my mom is that she loves going to movies. Every year she pays for membership in our city's independent film society so she can go to indie and foreign movies for free. So one day we're talking and she goes, "The Film Society is so nice! They're reimbursing me for the two months I couldn't watch movies because I was in mourning."

I go, "That is nice....wait a second, how did they know?"

"I wrote them a letter explaining that I was in mourning, and that I wouldn't be going to movies for the next two months or renewing my membership next year. But that I would be happy to pay for the next two months because I support their organization. And that they should keep me on their newsletter. I didn't want them to think I stopped supporting them. And wouldn't you know it? They gave me two free months!"

So my mom - who is otherwise a wonderful and generous person - used her dad's death to guilt-trip a nonprofit into giving her two free months of membership, which she could easily afford. In the process she confirmed all the worst stereotypes they had about Jews. (We live in a city that doesn't have a big Jewish population. Like, the kind of city where I am always making a conscious effort never to make a big deal about money, because I'm the only Jew a lot of people I know have ever met.) Thanks for setting the tribe back, Mom!