14 Questions I Got After Finding A Praying Mantis In My Sweetgreen Salad

14 Questions I Got After Finding A Praying Mantis In My Sweetgreen Salad

Sweetgreen decided I need some extra protein in my salad yesterday.


I went to a Sweetgreen in New York City on my lunch break and what follows can only be described as the stuff of nightmares.

I'm sure you remember the time you found a hair on your plate at a restaurant. Maybe a piece of another dish got mixed in with yours. Maybe your chicken was undercooked. Maybe you asked for a runny yolk in your eggs and they were fried all the way through.

This is not like one of those times. This is what I found in my Sweetgreen salad.

That's right. This is not just a "bug." A bug is that fly buzzing around your living room, bouncing harmlessly off your window trying to escape. This is a fully grown beast of an insect.

After posting it on my Instagram story, I thought I would answer some of the questions I got in my DMs.

1. Which Sweetgreen location was it?

Broadway and 38th Street. Avoid at all costs.

2. What kind of bug was it?

I wasn't sure at first. A kind bug expert who saw my story gave me the details. It's a praying mantis. Google it. These insects are straight up VICIOUS PREDATORS who eat the biggest and most terrifying bugs you can think of like they're light snacks. And I found one IN MY SALAD.

"Larger mantises sometimes eat smaller individuals of their own species, as well as small vertebrates such as lizards, frogs, and small birds." - Wikipedia

Screw. That.

3. Did you try to contact Sweetgreen?

I tagged them in my Instagram story. Sweetgreen was one of the first accounts to view it. No response. Was the picture not clear enough?

4. How big was it?

F*cking enormous. This was not your typical bug-in-your-food fiasco. I feared for my life and for the lives of others. (But it was probably 5-6 inches long.)

5. What kind of salad was it?

It was a guacamole with mixed greens salad and cost me $13.61. The side of protein was free, apparently.

6. When did you realize something was up with the salad?

I peeped the leg in my salad before I mixed it all up and thought it was a hair or something.

7. Uh... Did you bite into it?

I will never forget the sound of crunchy mantis between my teeth. Consider me scarred for life.

8. Well, did you finish the salad?

I didn't eat anything else all day.

9. Some cultures eat insects all the time. What's the big deal?

Yeah, but those cultures would have ordered their bugs off the menu. Sweetgreen doesn't serve bug (until now), nor did I ask for bug in my salad.

10. Is praying mantis gluten free?

I guess so. It's not vegan/vegetarian, though.

11. Did you ask for your money back?

I'll forget the $13.61, I'll never forget the sight of me pulling a 5-inch predatory insect out of my salad. And I think I'll enjoy posting this article more than a refund.

12. Did you scream?

I was in complete shock. I froze. I couldn't speak, move, or react.

13. Did you call the police?

No, but in hindsight maybe I should have.

14. Would this ever happen at a Chick-Fil-A?

Absolutely not. And if it did, I imagine I would now be a major shareholder in Chick-Fil-A's company and be getting free spicy chicken sandwiches for LIFE.

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.

Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:” Line Matters,

I want to start off by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can’t afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you’re just lazy and you “don’t feel like it”? Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you’re unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the US Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck.” stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:” line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can’t seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to ten people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!”

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the seventeen other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there’s a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 dollar bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of ten times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession - whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food, and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a forty dollar bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes - as if you’re better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you’ll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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Top 10 Food Places In Tally For Students On A Budget

Saving money and eating good.


As a college student, I have to get used to ballin' on a budget. That being said, I still love to eat out, and I look for deals wherever I go. As an FSU student, here are 10 of my favorite, most reasonable restaurants.

1. Taco Bell.

Yes I know Taco Bell is everywhere, but hear me out. Taco Bell is the ideal, cheap, drunk food. It is also delicious and $5 will get you far there.

2. Moe's.

There are so many tex-mex places everywhere, but Moe's is the absolute best. Such good quality food, at such a reasonable price. PLUS, the chips and salsa are free.

3. Roboto's.

Such inexpensive sushi and hibachi. So good. So many sauces. The portions are huge, so it's like two meals for the price of one!

4. Little Masa/ Masa.

If you're looking for something better quality, Masa and now Little Masa have such good deals with great portions.

5. Jimmy John's.

The most typical cheap, easy meal at FSU.

6. Momo's.

Huge slices. So many toppings.

7. Urban Food Market.

Such cheap, quality Italian food.

8. Gordo's.

Tallahassee staple. Amazing cuban food.

9. Cali Chicken Grill.

I'm from South Florida, so I miss Chicken Kitchen and Pollo Tropical so much. Cali Chicken Grill isn't the same, but it's close enough!

10. Newk's.

Like Panera Bread, but so much better.

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