When customers attack: America’s restaurant rage

Just stay in. It’s not worth the doggy bag or the fortune cookie or the supersizing. On Saturday, Florida resident Paul Blankfield, displeased that his Olive Garden-dining neighbors included a noisy, autistic 4-year-old boy, vented his irritation by throttling the boy’s father. Then on Tuesday Ohio police released surveillance video of Toledo woman Melodi Dushane going bonkers at the drive-through window over the news that the Golden Arches would be unable to accommodate her craving for Chicken McNuggets. Your kitchen may currently contain just a box of Lucky Charms and a six-pack of Sierra Nevada, but at least you won’t run into these idiots.

Few among us go on face-punching, window-smashing rampages when we can’t get an order of white meat and sodium phosphates; rare is the person who jumps a fellow patron at a joint whose chief enticement is unlimited breadsticks. Yet going out to eat — whether at the local fast food joint or a swank Tribeca hotspot — seems of late an emotional crap shoot.

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