The public has rallied around a former Waffle House cook by donating over $16,000 to a GoFundMe campaign after she was blacklisted from working at the restaurant due to her involvement in a fight with customers.
Last year, Halie Booth was employed at an Austin, Texas, location of the popular restaurant chain. She went viral after footage of her effortlessly catching and swatting away a metal chair thrown at her mid-flight was shared on social media.
The footage, taken in September 2021, shows an argument escalating into customers climbing on top of and sneaking behind the counter. At one point, Booth throws a sugar shaker to defend herself, but things only got worse. A physical fight between Waffle House employees and customers ensued and chaos erupted.
The debacle earned Booth the nickname Waffle House Wendy, with many comparing her to an Avenger or superhero. Even Lynda Carter, the actress who played Wonder Woman in the 1975 movie, joked that she trained at Waffle House in a tweet that included a clip of her character dismantling a chair.
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Booth shared her side of the story in a YouTube video. According to her, it all started when a group of five or six customers sat in an area of the restaurant that was closed. Booth said the party was informed the area was closed, but they refused to move and demanded “the white girl” cook for them.
“I’m gon’ make that white b**ch cook my food,” Booth said one of the women in the party said. She added she was the only cook on duty and the restaurant was already full. According to Booth, the group was “extremely drunk,” and she initially tried to be understanding of their belligerent requests for service.
However, after some back and forth during which Booth said some of the women in the party were very rude, she alleged one came behind the counter and began kicking food and plates. At that point Booth said she had the right to defend herself.
“That’s how night shift works and it’s sad because there’s no security guards,” Booth said. “There are guns that get pulled at Waffle House; there’s bullet holes in some Waffle Houses that I’ve worked at … up above where the shafts where like people dead a*s popped off at these places. It’s not safe at night, so we have to do what we can.”
As for her heroics with the chair, Booth told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson it was instinctive in an interview. “It was mainly just a pure rush of adrenaline and instinct that just kind of had me going,” Booth said.
Carlson said he assumed Waffle House would have rewarded Booth for her “bravery under pressure.” However, Booth revealed that Waffle House blacklisted her and put her on the ‘Do Not Hire’ list.
“Wait, you were written up for breaking a sugar shaker when someone threw a chair at you?” Carlson asked.
Booth’s GoFundMe had raised $16,276 at the time of this writing, far exceeding its $5,000 goal. The campaign’s description says “the funds will be wholly hers to spend in any manner she chooses.”
Though she can’t work at any other Waffle Houses, Booth is taking advantage of the moment. In addition to her GoFundMe and YouTube Channel, she created a Twitter account under the username @WitchDragon5, where she has over 22,000 followers.
She uses her newfound influencer status to sell merch and artwork depicting her experience. One fan even created an action figure titled “Waffle Combat” in her honor and showcased it on TikTok.
“If she doesn’t get a cameo in the next marvel movie I aint watching it,” one user commented on the TikTok.