Cruel prank on Jonesboro IHOP server draws ire on social media

JONESBORO, Ark. – A post with over 400 shares as of this article described a callous act by a diner that left a local waiter wondering what he had done wrong.

The post said on Thursday, a table of diners at the Jonesboro IHOP location “decided it would be classy to open a bottle of syrup and place it upside down on top of the money” for the server. It wasn’t a tip, either. The payment was made in exact change, according to Haley Hollins, who shared the post. She didn’t mince words.

“The look of pure upset from the server AND his coworkers was heartbreaking,” Hollins wrote. “He had no clue what he’d done to deserve this. I hope you got your laugh, because you are a genuinely awful person.”

NEA Report contacted the server who it happened to – Aaron Henson of Jonesboro. He verified the incident happened to him Thursday at IHOP on Caraway Road.

“It definitely wasn’t the highlight of my night,” Aaron said while laughing.

Although the act seemed to have upset some coworkers, Aaron seemed unaffected by the incident.

“It’s alright,” Aaron said. “Some people are just grouchy.”

The prank, or to some a magic trick, is normally one that is executed with a cup of water instead of a bottle of sticky syrup. The cup is filled with water and a dry card is placed on top of the cup. After carefully turning the cup upside down while keeping pressure on the card, the water will remain, even after letting go of the card (in theory).

Image result for upside down water trick

Inside the cup there was no air, so the weight inside the cup was coming only from the water. Depending on the size of your cup, the weight of the water may have been around 250g. The air below the card was pushing up into the card. The upwards air pressure was much greater than that of the pressure of the water pushing towards the ground – keeping the water in the cup. –

It might be an entertaining trick to a 5-year-old, but it was anything but entertaining to a server or their coworkers. The dollar bills and change all appeared to be soaked in syrup. Few in the comments found the incident funny, either.

“She’s called Karma. And she’s waiting. And she loves people like them. And shes not nice. Not. One. Bit.” wrote Ashley.

“Next time they come in show them the door.” said Grace.

As usual, a small number of online cynics made their negative opinions known (and not to a popular response).

But some saw the post as a chance to make a wrong situation right.

It hurts my heart to even try and see this poor man’s reaction to his table after thinking why he deserved this treatment,” wrote Erika. “Can you get his name, just first, and address of his IHOP and I’ll send him a money order for $5. I have worked from short hand to Michelin star and we are all in this business together and no one knows what we are going through behind closed doors, no matter what our position is at whatever class of establishments we work. Thank you in advance. Xo”

Several others asked for an opportunity to send money to the waiter, too. Aaron wasn’t aware of that when a reporter spoke to him but his first reaction was to share it with others, rather than keep it himself. He remained positive about the experience and was back at work the next day.

“The night wasn’t all that bad,” Aaron said.



  1. Security tape should be checked to identify those who did this. They need to be publicly identified, fined, barred from IHOP permanently, and should have to tip him at least double of the total bill! Ignorance is no they make their parents proud!!

  2. College town. I worked part time busing tables in a college cafeteria. Most patrons just left everything on tray…easy to remove tray & sanitize table. But there were always some who took everything off tray, put on table, smeared butter on bottom of plates, scattered sugar, used salt and ice to freeze water glasses to table, etc. Pains in the rear abound among college kids.

  3. It sounds like a bad day at work , and many might not find it funny eather, but realize love everyone but you dont have to love the evil in them, an we are put in situations to test who you really are. Kick the dust off your boots an move on ,and let it go. You can be better than this. May GOD bless you all.

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