In a four seat booth both parties sit on the same side of the booth, leaving the other side empty.
Being crowded doesn't play into it.
Maybe at the Cowgirl Hall of Fame the girls may group up like that, but at McSorley's Ale House? Or any one of the famed Blarney Stone pubs...
McSorley's and even the various Blarney Stone's are old school. They don't do anything based on modern standards.
You can fit more people into a dive if people sit side by side. You don't think that plays into a dive owner (in the Big Apple's) thinking? This may also be difficult to process. When some people go eat dinner with a date, there primary focus is on being close to their date not on whether they can eat without bumping elbows. In other words some people need to work on their priority list.
Still, if its your table then its yours, two seated on the same side and the other side open. I know they try to cram all the tables they can into a place in the city, just look at the Carnegie Deli. When, if ever do you see two on the same side of the booth and the other side empty? They never showed that on Seinfeld, and to my recollection I never saw it in the city anywhere. It may happen on occasion in a Jersey or Brooklyn diner, but they don't play that in Canarsie.
And you can love each other while your all the way on the other side of the booth. Is is going to kill you to have a table between you for an hour.
Now, driving down the road in a pickup truck is one thing. Except for the safety issue of no seat belt I can see why people would do that.
And what do they do besides eat and talk Splatterface?