Hosting a dinner party is tough work.
You have to cook a much larger amount of everything than you’re used to—timing all of those plates to make a full, hot meal come out simultaneously takes what can feel like a professional level of skill—and people have all sorts of different preferences.
Luckily, most people are just happy to be at a dinner party. They’ll find a way to enjoy themselves no matter what.
But one Redditor encountered the exception to that rule. The party happened awhile ago, but it’s still clearly on his mind.
He described the event in a post to the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit.
The Original Poster (OP), known on Reddit as AdamKarn88, cut right to the chase in the title.
“AITA for serving a plain wedge salad to a vegan?”
OP began by clarifying who brought the whole thing into existence.
“Some of my friends are still mad at me over a year since this happened. Back in November 2019, I ([Male, 31-year-old] at the time) had a dinner party with eight of my friends.”
“I cooked and provided drinks, they just had to show up.”
“This was not a potluck, they didn’t chip in for the cost, this was all my effort.”
He did it mindfully, too.
“Well, I planned out the meal and sent out the menu to my friends a week in advance, to check if any of them were averse to my choices.”
“I said they had three days to tell me if they had suddenly developed an allergy or something. No responses.”
But there are always the outliers.
“Two days before the party, one of my friends [29-year-old male] asks me if he could bring his new girlfriend to dinner. I always have plenty of leftovers, so I said sure.”
“The night before, he asks me if I could change the menu since his girlfriend is vegan.”
“I laughed and explained that I had already bought all the ingredients, started prepping, and I wasn’t going to change the entire menu for someone I didn’t know.”
Their boldness, however, made these outliers among outliers.
“This wasn’t good enough for M29.”
“I told him he was welcome to bring his new girlfriend, and she could bring her own food, but I wasn’t going to change anything in my menu, and there would literally be only two sides she could eat.”
“After some back and forth, he ended the call by telling me, ‘You’ll figure something out’.”
Then came the big night.
“Well, the dinner party came. He brought his new girlfriend.”
“Upon arriving, she scrunched up her nose and said, ‘UGH, you’re serving meat’. I admit that I instantly hated her and told her that perhaps she and M29 should just go home.”
“They ignored my helpful suggestion and M29 told me to figure something out.”
Clearly, some ongoing friction was to be expected.
“I served up various courses, none of which she nor M29 would eat.”
“Conversation was awkward as Vegan GF was verbally sniping at me every time I served something with animal products, which was almost everything. All she did was insult me and chug my wine.”
“M29 was getting visibly hangry, too.”
“When it came to the main course, I served her and M29 a generous portion of confit byaldi and bread.”
“She asked, ‘This is it?’ I told her that if she doesn’t want this, I could make her something special, like a ‘salade en quartiers sans garniture’.”
“She agreed, smirking like she won some kind of battle.”
During salad prep, OP invoked some artistic license.
“I took her plate back, went to the kitchen, and made a big spectacle chopping a head of lettuce with a meat cleaver.
“I brought her a quarter of a head of lettuce on a paper plate and told her that if she doesn’t want it, she and her boyfriend can GTFO.”
The showmanship elicited a variety of responses.
“Predictably, this erupted in arguing with four of my friends defending M29 and Vegan GF and the other three defending me. M29, Vegan GF, and three of my friends left in protest.”
“The rest of the party was much nicer, in my opinion. And everyone took home a lot of leftovers.”
“Half of my friends haven’t spoken to me since this started, and the other half want me to apologize so they don’t have to choose sides.”
Anonymous strangers on the internet were asked to provide feedback by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Responses on Reddit were somewhat mixed.
A majority of people called OP NTA. They cited his clear efforts to be accommodating beforehand.
“NTA You had your plans made, your ingredients purchased, and you gave everyone chance to make reasonable changes.”
“Asking for someone to be added after that point, who wants changes made to accommodate their dietary choices is just rude. For her to then start sniping at you the instant she walks in just crossing a line.”
“You were far more patient and tolerant than I would have been. She’d have been out the door the second she starting bi***ing about being in the presence of meat.” — AnselaJonla
“NTA at all! You gave plenty of notice and the option for her to bring her own food. Also, is she aware that most wine is not vegetarian/vegan?” — kivysaur
Others shared OP’s clear impatience for the entitled attitude of his guests.
“NTA. I’m vegan, I don’t expect anyone to accommodate me and often bring my own food to places. I don’t lecture people on what they’re eating.”
“She sounds like a self righteous a**hole. You’re kind for even having two things she could have.” — bodwrdda
“NTA. You M29 friend is particularly entitled if he expects you to cater to his new GF… especially if you hadn’t even met her.”
“She had no right to insult you or your diet IN YOUR OWN HOME, when she was originally an uninvited guest at the time of meal-planning….”
“If I were in your shoes, I’d feel glad to be rid of someone like that.” — LenoreSkellington
“NTA. You theoretically could have been the bigger person and just not given her a quarter head of lettuce (cute though calling it a plain wedge may be).”
“But frankly if, on a call before the party, my friend informed me that I’d just have to figure it out, that friend would be immediately disinvited.” — Adept-One-819
A good amount of other people, though, invoked the ESH acronym, for “Everyone Sucks Here.”
They agreed the guests weren’t in the right, but they criticized OP’s response too.
“It started out as NTA but by the end turned into the rare ESH.” — WarmedObject
“ESH – you sound insufferable as hell” — MrSocPsych
“ESH. It was unreasonable for your guests to be surly when you wouldn’t change your plan for them.”
“But you also could have at least tried working with them, instead of throwing a fit of your own with your ‘salade’, which was clearly intended to be insulting.” — sleepeejack
“ESH. You should have told him that he couldn’t bring his GF after he told you that the menu needed to be changed.”
“Being a smarmy a**hole doesn’t solve anything.” — Blustasis
“ESH here, how much hassle would it really have been for you to give her a carrot?” — Desq1983
The lesson here?
By all means, eat what you like and avoid what you want, but don’t procrastinate on responding to invitations.