"Modern day Robin Hood" tests limits of all you can eat buffets
A "21st Century Robin Hood" has tested the limits of all-you-can-eat-buffets, drinking Nando's refillable drinks machine dry, and walking away from an Italian restaurant with a suitcase-full of pizza.
Utilising classic techniques such as "taking a briefcase in order to look respectable, and then cram pizza inside of said suitcase" and dressing up as twins with an accomplice, and treating the all-you-can-eat meal like a relay race, Vice writer Oobah Butler was able to eat a lot more than the restaurants were prepared for.
Understandably, he has been called a modern-day Robin Hood figure for his efforts.
"Broke and in the city of greed"
After moving to London a few years ago and finding it extremely expensive, Oolah became obsessed with making the most of all you can eat buffets.
"Broke and in the city of greed, I got obsessed," he wrote in Vice Magazine.
"How can I maximise their value? How do I beat the system? The house can't always win. After many sleepless nights, jotting into my notepad, by jove, I had it. Four different cons crafted carefully with one purpose: to take down the man and to finally get our fair fill of an all you can eat buffet."
Very cheeky Nando's
Outraged by Nando's scam of offering "bottomless refills" when no human can reasonably drink more than one diet coke in a sitting, Oolah first headed to Nando's to fill up an empty two-litre bottle. He'd eaten there last night, and only managed one drink, so felt he was ok to get his refill today.
"They're making a killing off of hapless optimists like me. In a moment of madness, possessed by desperation and dehydration, I stand up like I'm ready for a tank on Tiananmen Square. I take an empty bottle into the Nando's on Stockwell Road and walk straight up to the machine to get my fill."
Nervously he filled the bottle, looking over his shoulder for any chicken bouncers employed by Nando's.
"It is one of the most liberating experiences of my life. Could I come back in a week, a few months, or a year and sip on a Fanta? Who knows, but I am chalking this one down as a win. I'll never go thirsty again."
After that extremely simple "con", Oolah's scams started getting a bit bit more elaborate, and a sh*tload more cartoony.
Too cheeky? That's for Ed Miliband to decide.
Nap in a Chinese restaurant, briefcase full of pizza
Oolah's buffet cons (great band name) continued the next day, when he spent all day (from breakfast to tea) slowly eating in an all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurant. He stayed there for 6 hours 50 minutes in total, even taking a nap between meals.
"It's pretty fucking incredible that – in the city where a pint costs you £5 – you can eat an unlimited amount of food for as long as you want for £6.99," he wrote.
Oolah even asked the guy at the door if this was normal customer behaviour (eating, napping, eating some more) and the guy told him:
"Sure, you only stayed for six hours and 50 minutes, it's cool brother."
Buoyed by his Chinese success, Oolah ate at a pizza restaurant at Victoria station. When he asked if it was ok to take a few slices home to feed the foxes and was told it was against restaurant policy, he crammed his briefcase full of pizza slices and went on his merry way
"I must not forget my briefcase, you see, because I'm a businessman and it's filled with important documents, meeting minutes and... Pizza! Endless pizza - stacks of it."
"I won't take one or two slices, I'll go for 26, thank you. Like an Andy Dufresne captivated by greed instead of freedom, with every plate I took from the buffet, I'd eat one and covertly slip three or four into my foil-lined case. They didn't see it coming. That's dinner for three or four days taken care of for £7.49. Boom!"
Now believing he was invincible, and with zero f*cks left to give, Oolah headed for his biggest scam yet. Getting TWO all-you-can-eat buffets for the price of one.
All he needed was a friend who was willing to dress as a double (which he had) and a restaurant who aren't paying too close attention to what he looked like. He and his friend Gavin both dressed up in loud Hawaiin shirts, styled their hair to look like each other and headed for Jimmy's restaurant.
The plan was for Gavin to go in first, order all-you-can-eat and a beer, eat his fill and drink half the beer. Then when Gavin had his fill, he would pretend to have a phone call and slip outside briefly. At that point, the two would switch places, and Oolah would go inside and have his fill.
"I enter Jimmy's on my phone and end the call. Taking his seat at the same table on the left-hand side of the restaurant, I will take a sip of Cobra and fill my boots. At precisely 6:56pm, I will ask for the bill and pay for exactly one buffet and one beer. Genius, right?"
Oolah then left the restaurant, and his scamming days, behind him, having only paid for one all-you-can-eat and filled two adults with all they could eat.
Loved this? There are more legal ways to get a free Nando's drink, and other freebies. Try these on for size: