Worms in Salad

Here's a recent example of what I call the "gross things found in food scam." The Post Tribune reports:
Tiffany Vance of Merrillville and her dinner date, Christopher Egnatz of St. John, tried to make a scene Tuesday night after dining at Applebee's, but it didn't play out as the pair had planned.
Servers at the crowded restaurant let the couple walk out on a $57 meal after Vance loudly complained she had found worms wriggling in her salad after the two had almost finished eating, a police report states.
But Vance left behind her purse, with a plastic container of maggot-like bee moth worms inside it, when she and Egnatz left.
A waitress searching for identification in the purse also found the container, and called police. As a police officer was taking a report at the restaurant a few minutes later, Egnatz returned, looking for the purse.

Egnatz later confessed.

Food Scams

Posted on Mon Mar 10, 2008


That's hilarious, because when eating at an Applebee's about 9 years ago, I was just finishing up eating a chicken caesar salad when I found a SLUG in my salad. Clearly they hadn't washed their lettuce well enough. My parents and I also got free meals, but at least mine wasn't a scam! For the record, this was also the last time I ever ate at Applebee's.
Posted by Kate  in  Meriden, CT  on  Mon Mar 10, 2008  at  12:44 AM
My parents always said that you should be grateful, not disgusted, if you find a live caterpillar, slug, or snail in your salad - it shows it wasn't drowned in pesticides.

Maggots are not quite so reassuring, of course: although they are apparently a valuable protein source, they are a somewhat acquired taste in the sphere of nutritional supplements.
Posted by outeast  on  Mon Mar 10, 2008  at  04:19 AM
Hey, at least they weren't using human fingers for their scam.
Posted by Christopher Cole  in  Tucson, AZ  on  Mon Mar 10, 2008  at  10:18 AM
I suppose this also belongs in the "dumb criminals" category, since leaving the purse behind indicates either complete incompetence or a desire to get caught.

The "bee moth worms" were probably waxworms, which are often cultured as live food for captive reptiles, amphibians, and the like. Since they are normally found in beehives, it would be pretty hard to explain how they ended up in some lettuce and tomatoes, or whatever vegetables were in the salad, in the absence of foul play. It would be like termites infesting a plastic table.
Posted by Big Gary  in  Beeville, Texas  on  Mon Mar 10, 2008  at  12:14 PM
If I was going to run a scam to get a free meal, the last place I would do it is at Applebees. The food isn't worth it there even if it's free.
Posted by Razela  in  Chicago, IL  on  Sun Mar 16, 2008  at  02:55 PM
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