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A Waffle House Worker Was in a Pickle. Enter a 'Mystery Man'

That man, plus other 'everyday heroes,' helped out at understaffed restaurant in Birmingham
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 11, 2019 10:30 AM CST
In this July 28, 2005, file photo, traffic flashes by breakfast diners at a Waffle House near Dawsonville, Ga.   (AP Photo/Ric Feld, File)

(Newser) – "A little gap in staffing" could have led to chaos at an Alabama Waffle House, but thanks to a few generous customers and a worker named Ben, the food and the coffee kept flowing. Ethan Crispo relays what happened on Nov. 2 when he made a late-night stop at the Birmingham restaurant after attending a friend's party. He tells CNN he immediately noticed more than 30 customers but just one worker with a nametag that said "Ben" desperately trying to "fend off the incoming crowd of hungry, heavily imbibed customers." Ben seemed "awash in bewilderment" on how to handle the rush, Crispo says. That's when "everyday heroes" stepped up to the plate and started helping Ben manage the workload, the Takeout reports.

First, per AL.com, came a "mystery man" in a blue shirt who donned an apron and got to work busing tables and washing dishes. Then a woman glammed up in a fancy dress and high heels poured coffee and stacked cups. At least one other customer also pitched in while Ben cooked the orders and handled the register. A Waffle House rep tells CNN that some internal confusion led to the staffing mix-up, adding, "We're very appreciative and thankful" for the helpful customers, "but we do prefer to have our associates behind the counter." As for Crispo, he was extremely touched by everything he witnessed, he tells AL.com. "It was just one of the most wild instances of really, really cool people just coming together." (Read about another good deed.)

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