Well, hey there! Welcome! Thanks for continuing to cautiously make it back out into the world despite, y’know, the world. We really appreciate your joining us for dinner this evening.

So, I’ll be your QR code menu tonight. Oh, bless you for remembering—yes, that was me back in Summer 2021! I also thought this was a temp gig until the pandemic was over. Or, well, over enough now, I guess? Who’s really counting anymore—but, yeah, I’m still here! Crazy!

Anyway, in a few moments, your server will arrive to take your order so a little instruction before they get here. Now, I will admit I am a little surprised by your party—clearly, as indicated by my presence, we did not expect anyone outside of the ages of twelve to nineteen joining us at this family restaurant tonight, but how I work could not be easier, don’t you worry.

So, everyone, just take out your phone—which is not classist at all—and scan me, the 2×2 square taped to the middle of your table. The menu will open up right in your web browser! Very cool.

What’s that? Oh, so most of why you came out tonight was to get the family off their devices and just talk to each other, sharing each other’s company without distractions? I love that; that’s great. It’s also dead. Yeah, died for good with the old world. Now everyone takes out their phones and scans me, decides on the jalapeño poppers, then taps on a notification from social media, and from there just descends back into the gaping maw of celebrity gossip and political incompetence until the food arrives. The poppers are excellent, though; my favorite. Great choice.

Hey, but some good news: corporate recently optimized the restaurant’s website for mobile devices. Yes, we’re not one of those local joints that force you to pinch and zoom through a website the owner’s nephew made for them in 2013. Hah! No, we have a crack marketing team that, after months of deliberation, decided to put everything we offer on a single, monstrously long page. Yep, no need to click any further links: just scroll down and down until you get to the section you want. That’s it, you’re doing great, nearly there– Mmm, no, that’s too fast, you missed the salads. Scroll up. Scroll up– Oh. Okay, missed again. Down. Down more. Down a litt– Up. Up just a– There it is. You got it. So easy.

I also see Grandma and Grandpa are joining us tonight—that’s wonderful. Good to see you both. As a heads up, at no time will navigating them through this process be anything other than abject misery. Fortunately, all you have to do is traverse from the concept of a QR code itself all the way to confirming they want the chicken in about three minutes. Again, it couldn’t be easier. That said, after they’ve taken four or five photos of me, you may find it easier just to brusquely demand their phones—which, of course, are the smallest model they could find since they were “just looking for something that makes calls”—and scan the menu for them. You should also be prepared for them to interrupt their squinting into a 2×3” rectangle with sweeping accusations about how technology is ruining society and questions about why we just can’t have printed menus anymore.

Do we still have printed menus? Yes, of course. We had them the whole time, yes. Why were you not just given those? Well, I mean, we just thought our new digital menu allows for us to more cheap– I mean, more easily update the drinks lists and specials and it just feels so modern and fancy, right? Oh, on that note, I know it does show up on your phone, but we are out of the jalapeño poppers.

Oh, well, sure– Sure, I could get the manager for you. Unfortunately, they are a bit busy, and it may be a while. It doesn’t mean we don’t value your feedback, however. If it’s any easier for you, there is a QR code by the host’s station you can scan to get to a form on the website to email corporate. The form is not optimized for mobile devices.