You’ve just ordered a top sirloin at a five star restaurant and the waiter brings you prime rib. Or you arrive on time for your reservation and still have to wait 20 minutes to get a table. Or you ask for a beer with your dinner and, after you’ve reminded the waiter twice, he informs you as you’re finishing off your entree that the restaurant is out of your selection.
Do you complain to the manager, or do you wax philosophic and chalk up the experience to the vagaries of life?
It may depend on whether you are dining cross-country or dining across town.
That’s what researchers from Temple University, Arizona State University, and the University of Minnesota concluded when they studied a cross-section of restaurant reviews: we’re more likely to be critical of establishments when we’re closer to home than we are when we’re on the road.
The question, of course, is why?