A former delivery driver held up an Indian restaurant he used to work at with an air pistol wrapped in newspaper.
Paul Mulholland raided the Shimla Cottage in Coatbridge, Lanarkshire on March 10 2019.
A manager recognised his voice, but the 47-year-old still demanded cash.
He fled empty handed after another worker confronted Mulholland then chased after him.
The man quizzed Mulholland as to why he was committing the crime, and even offered him £10.
On Thursday, Mulholland pled guilty to a charge of assault with attempt to rob at the High Court in Glasgow.
He will be sentenced next month.
Prosecutor Bernard Ablett told how Mulholland had been a delivery driver there in 2012, but quit due to a back injury.
He added: “There was no dispute when he left his employment.
“The last time he was then seen there before this incident was around October 2018 as a customer.”
On March 10 2019, staff were preparing to close for the night.
Mulholland, who was dressed in black with his hood up, then stormed in while holding the weapon.
He shouted: “Give me your money.”
Mr Ablett: “The staff member recognised his voice when he spoke and was later able to tell the police his name.”
The court heard there was nothing in till other than some coins and receipts.
Mulholland pointed the weapon at another worker, who held up a chair to keep him away.
He then went after the raider when he escaped.
Mr Ablett: “He chased him to a point where they ran out of breath.
“He asked Mulholland: ‘Why are you doing this?’. He offered him a ten pound note, but Mulholland stated: ‘I don’t want your tenner’.”
Mulholland, of Glenboig, was later found by police at a taxi rank.
The air pistol was discovered in his carrier bag. The court heard the weapon was designed to fire plastic ball bearings.
Mulholland should have appeared at the high court in February this year, but a warrant was issued when he was not in the dock.
He was eventually arrested at Glasgow Airport just over a week later.
Lady Stacey adjourned sentencing for reports.