What's the point?

I would like to comment on a recent Fearless Consumer column by Barbara Nordin. ["Dressing debacle," April 15, 2004]. This article left me baffled.

What exactly was the point, relevance, and significance of it? A server spilled some dressing on customers, and there was a minor misunderstanding with the manager, which was cleared up later on. Does that warrant a whole article in the paper? Is it really something people are interested in reading about? Is there absolutely no other consumer issue to research that would be more important and helpful to the public ?

Being a former restaurant manager, I can attest to the fact that accidents happen in the course of running a restaurant. Servers accidentally spill things on guests, in every restaurant, and in every city.

I understand the point of your article wasn't the spill itself but the manager's response. What I fail to understand, however, is its relevance to the general dining public. This situation was a one-time occurrence that involved only the party dining and the restaurant's management.

I am certain from frequently dining at Northern Exposure that this was an isolated incident, not representative of the way business is normally conducted.

Managers always want guests to have a pleasant experience and will do anything so that customers leave happy. No manager will willingly anger patrons by refusing to accommodate them. However, they are only human, and it's possible that in the midst of a busy lunch or dinner rush, when they have to multi-task, they might miss or misjudge a situation.

This leads me to wonder why this non-event even made it to print, unless it was a good opportunity for Nordin to once again lash out at owner Robert Weitzner. Whatever grudge she has against him, it is affecting her journalistic impartiality and is turning into a personal vendetta. I guess journalists' ethics are no longer what they used to be.

Solenne Paquis