DEAR ABBY: I have never seen this topic addressed in your column. My wife and I love to eat out. Over the past year, however, we have both been trying to shed some weight and eat more sensibly. A solution that has worked for us is sharing one meal. One meal is often more than enough to satisfy the both of us.
Our problem: Every time we order one meal for the two of us instead of two meals, the service turns sour. This happens often, even though we tip as though we had bought two meals since the server had to serve two people. It is upsetting because we have found that sharing a meal allows us to continue eating out without going off our diets.
The attitude we encounter is almost always rude and condescending. I'd be interested in your opinion. -- DINER IN THE MIDWEST
DEAR DINER: Look at it from the server's point of view. Even though you tip for two, the server doesn't know that until the end of the meal -- so it may not be surprising that you're noticing a chill.
On the other hand, it's not unusual for diners to split a meal, and they do it for a variety of reasons. Since restaurants are supposed to offer hospitality as well as food, when you encounter problems with a server, you should discuss it with the manager (or try another restaurant).