Clawing to escape the belly of the beast here in Hollywood. To commiserate, email my name assistantatlas at yahoo.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

How To Get A Table Anywhere In LA

Normally, I love Defamer. But I don't know how Mark let this get past his editing, in a recent feature entitled "You'll Never Make Reservations In This Town Again." According to them, Hollywood Momentum isn't completely stupid, and they even go so far as to say that a recent column: "features a fine return to form for its Screamers section".

WTF, Defamer? Are you effing kidding me?

Return to what form? And also, if Hollywood Momentum is a "trade paper", then this blog is a giant pink unicorn.

As to the Screamer: Look, if you've got an A-list, Oscar-nominated boss and you can't get a table at any restaurant in Los Angeles, YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING. Sorry, Charlie.

But listen, I know that not everyone has the years of assistant experience that I have. So listen up, kiddies. If the maitre'd is for a second thinking he's not going to seat your boss, then there's any number of things you can do. Here are just some of my favorites. . .

For starters, if the party is large, always start with a party of 4, one of whom is boss person's significant other/girlboyfriend. Then, once they accept that, you can slowly bump it up to 6, then up to 8 over a few hours.

Tell the maitre'd that it's the birthday of A-Lister's brother or sister or father or whatever. Special occasions always help secure a seat. Personally, I've used this one a lot and have good luck with it.

Use your supporting players. Tell them that the other people at the table are important, too. For example, who would you want more at your restaurant than say, JJ Abrams? Joss Whedon? Les Moonves' third cousin? A development exec at Sony? Well, maybe not that last one.

Beg. Beg like your job depends on it. Which it does. Or should. Ho'wood Momentum, I'm talking to you.

Ask who they ARE seating tonight and make an argument that your boss should get their table instead.

Subtle threats of anonymous reporting of the kitchen staff to the INS are usually effective, but should only be used in more extreme scenarios. Like, Oscar night.

If you've got any more you'd like to share, feel free. That's what comments are for, people...



Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's nothing like living in NYC to teach you how to get a seat at an overbooked restaurant.

Here are some pointers for "everyman"...This works for anyone, no matter how famous or infamous you are:

1. Compliment.
"I know I didn't make a reservation, but we were here a month ago and it was such incredible're probably all booked up, but..."

Here is a very sneaky way
2. Look at the Hostess reservations, read the names (yes I can do this upsidedown) and pick one! Oh, and by the way we bought 2 more people, can you accommodate?

3. Money
A very slyly folded wad of cash may get you a very nice table.

4. Be gracious.
Saying please and thank you can take you a long way!

2:57 PM

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