During an important business meeting with Scene contributor and blogger extraordinaire Cleveland Frowns last weekend, we happened to strike up a conversation with a former waitress at XO. That W. 6th hot spot, you might remember, was one of LeBron James' favorite stomping grounds during his time in Cleveland.
The problem with having LeBron James as a regular patron, as we documented back in 2008 and as XO employees know, is that LeBron is known as what restaurant industry folks like to call a shitty fucking tipper. That's the technical term.
In addition to the reported $10 tip on an $800 bill, it was also whispered that one server had up and quit because of LeBron's antics, which included sticking around til 3 or 4 in the morning with his hangers-on, keeping the staff late as they waited for LeBron to find pennies in his pocket to leave on the table.
The former XO waitress added some new details, all gleefully mundane but awesome. Thankfully, we're intrepid reporters and we dutifully jotted them down on bar napkins, which also had nacho cheese stains on them, so it was really hard to read what we wrote.
— He made bartenders cry on more than one occasion.
— He drank apple martinis.
— When LeBron had a large crew in his party, waiters and waitresses took advantage of the ability to add the tip automatically, which didn't go unnoticed by His Majesty. "They're not with me," he said one time. "Well then they need to give you money," she responded.
— He liked his steak well-done and asked at least once to have it cut up for him. Our waitress said she flat out told him no. (Someone also once told us that when LeBron ordered spaghetti at Johnny's Downtown one night, he tried sending it back to be cut up for him. King James is above knife-work.)
— He wanted A1 sauce for the steak.
— "LeBron liked me because I didn't put up with his crap," she said.
There ya go.
Of course, if any current or former waiters or waitresses out there have other stories about famous folks or athletes making their lives hell, we're all ears.