Image Waitress Shares of How Gen-Z And Boomers Leave Their Tables Sparks Heated Debate Online

By: Carissa | Last updated: Nov 08, 2023

The battle between Gen-Z and Boomers seems to be never ending, and the discussion about which generation is superior just got a lot more heated.

A waitress recently shared a TikTok video showing the difference between how the Gen-Z crowd leaves their tables at the end of a meal compared to how Boomers leave their table. The stark contrast is telling, and everyone wants to weigh-in on this generation debate.

The Difference Between the Two Tables Was Shocking

18-year-old Kaitlyn Brande – whose birth year puts her in the Gen Z category – caused quite a stir when she recently uploaded a video to her TikTok account (@katebrande).


Source: (katebrande/TikTok)

The brief 11-second clip showed two tables that Brande had waited on at the restaurant she works at. The TikToker explained that one table belonged to five boomers and the table next to it sat six Gen-Zers.


The Boomers Left a Mess While Gen-Z Was Clean and Neat

The first table was left in disarray, with the boomer generation leaving a mess of unfinished food, straw wrappers, and cutlery sprawled out everywhere.


Source: Wikimedia Commons

At the Gen-Z table, the plates were left all neatly stacked in a pile and the cups and other used items were organized. The message was clear: boomers left a mess when they were done eating, while Gen-Z was thoughtful enough to tidy up.

The Video’s Caption Says It All

In the caption of the video, Brande outlined what she believes boomers and Gen-Z think when dining out.


Source: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images

“They get paid to do that” vs “We know restaurant life is hard, here, let us help you out,” she said, signifying that boomers expect to be completely catered to by waitstaff, while Gen-Z is more considerate of the hard work that restaurant workers put in.

A Matter of Etiquette

The video, which has 6.8 million views, certainly shines a spotlight on the difference in dining behavior between boomers and Gen-Z.


Source: Restaurant Ware

“Here’s all I’m saying,” Brande said in the TikTok. “This is a table of five boomers, that I took some plates out already. And then this is a table of six Gen Zs. They did that. Just saying.” Of course, it’s the waiter’s job to clear the table after a meal, but a little consideration goes a long way.

Aiming to Show the Hypocrisy of Boomers

Since Brande’s video has gone varial, various news outlets have reached out to her for additional comments. She made some interesting points in an interview with Buzzfeed.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

“I posted it because I thought it was ironic since older people always expect respect,” she said, while also understanding boomer’s perspective of not cleaning up after themselves. “I’m not saying I expect people to ever stack their plates like that, because hey, I’m a person too,” she further explained.


The Waitress Doesn’t Think Its That Big of a Deal

Brande wasn’t trying to make boomers look bad with her video—she was simply pointing out the noticeable difference in the two tables she had waited on.

Source: BSW Health

“I want to go out and eat and not worry about the dishes or anything. All I’m saying is it was cool and helpful of the younger people, and I appreciated it,” she shared.


The Comment Section Offers Varying Opinions

Brande’s video garnered thousands of comments, and many of them were split down the middle. Some were on Team Gen-Z, saying, “I love cleaning up my mess at restaurants, the wait staff already goes through so much, so why not help?” Another comment relayed a similar message, saying, “I always put the plates together when I’m eating out because it’s respectful.”

Source: Cheapism

Others firmly sided with the boomers. “The table looks like they ate at a restaurant and left. You know, like you’re supposed to do,” said one commenter. Another commenter agreed, saying, It’s not a customer’s job to clean the table… don’t be lazy. I have worked in the industry and never expected anyone to do my job.”