1. A week in advance, you send an email asking where people want to go.
2. No one writes back until the day of.
3. Your extremely picky friend says, “idk i’m fine w whatever.”
4. Someone sends a link to a restaurant that only serves tiny meat pies.
5. Your unemployed friend says, “Can we go somewhere cheap, I’m on a budget.”
6. Someone suggests a place that only has a $78 prix-fixe menu because they “feel like it’s been getting a lot of good buzz.”
7. Your friend who lives somewhere horribly inconvenient asks if it can be near their apartment.
8. You decide to just pick a place yourself.
9. You make a reservation and tell everyone to meet at the restaurant at 7:30.
10. One person texts to ask if you could eat at 9 p.m. instead because they “had a late lunch.”
11. You decline to respond.
12. They arrive 30 minutes late to get revenge.
13. The host tells you your group can’t sit until everyone gets there.
14. There’s no room to sit at the bar so you all squeeze together in the entryway while waiters bump into you and give you side-eye.
15. Someone you only invited to be nice shows up with a random friend they didn’t tell you about.
16. Because of the random friend you have to wait another hour because you need a bigger table now.
17. You sit down at 9 p.m.
18. Someone asks, “Should we all split a couple bottles of wine?”
19. Someone else is like, “Actually, I was thinking about a cocktail?”
20. A third person goes, “Um, I’m not drinking right now, so could we maybe get separate checks?”
21. You decide to order just one bottle of wine.
22. No one has any idea which bottle of wine to get.
23. You order the second-cheapest bottle.
24. A bread basket fails to appear.
25. Everyone keeps talking while the waiter lists the specials.
26. The one person who was listening to the specials has to repeat what they were six times.
27. No one wants to order any of the specials anyway because they’re more expensive.
28. Still no bread.
29. The waiter brings the wine and pours a tiny amount into your glass and everyone awkwardly stares at you while you taste it and you’re like, “Yep, it’s wine.”
30. Seriously, where the &%$*# is the bread.
31. Your vegan friend asks the waiter if the salad has meat in it.
32. Someone says, “Let’s just get a bunch of stuff and share it.”
33. The vegan asks if the salad has cheese in it.
34. The waiter tells you you have to PAY for bread.
35. One dude starts mansplaining burrata.
36. Two people get into an argument over the difference between ramps and spring onions.
37. The subject of whether or not kale is “over” is discussed at length.
38. At least 50% of the table orders the burger.
39. The appetizers you ordered to share are only big enough for 0.37 bites per person.
40. You realize you should have ordered three of everything.
41. The person who said they weren’t drinking pours half the bottle of wine into their glass.
42. You order more wine.
43. The main courses arrive. Everyone who got a burger feels great about their choice. Everyone who didn’t is secretly jealous.
44. The vegan realizes that there are nuts in the salad.
45. The vegan is also allergic to nuts.
46. The vegan painstakingly picks out the nuts and makes a little pile of greasy nuts on the table.
47. Everyone who didn’t order a burger keeps stealing French fries from people who did.
48. One person keeps standing on her chair to take photos of her plate for Instagram.
49. The two people sitting on either side of you start yelling across your face about something you could not be paid to care about.
50. Someone keeps taking out their phone to reuse people’s IRL jokes on Twitter.
51. One person spends the entire meal texting the cooler friend they actually want to be hanging out with.
52. The waiter asks if anyone is interested in dessert.
53. Someone says they’re “totally stuffed” and “can’t even think about dessert.”
54. That person proceeds to steal huge bites of everyone else’s dessert.
55. You wait 45 minutes for the waiter to bring the check.
56. Someone has to leave early and “forgets” to leave money.
57. You suggest just splitting the check evenly to make things easy.
58. One person insists on looking at the check so they can calculate exactly how much they owe.
59. When they realize their entree was $13 more expensive than everyone else’s, they’re suddenly really on board with splitting the check.
60. Literally no one has any cash.
61. One person says, “Wait, do you guys have Venmo?”
62. Someone else goes, “Those Venmo ads are so creepy. I’m not using that.”
63. Everyone has to take turns going to the ATM down the block.
64. One person volunteers to just pay with their credit card so they can keep everyone else’s cash.
65. Everyone talks about how dinner was “so much fun” and “we should totally do this again soon.”
66. A few weeks later, you email to ask if anyone wants to go out to eat on Saturday.
67. Someone writes back, “What about brunch?”