I know you’re busy, but…

Yesterday we met some friends for brunch.  This couple and their kids join us once a month or so and we love the little guys and their adorable antics.  The older lad is a mini-me to Dad and he usually quips something memorable.  The smaller guy is quieter but adorable to watch.  They give us a kid fix while we get a rare chance to visit with busy Mom and Dad. 

We usually have a good food experience where we meet.  The guys love their skillets and the kids devour the chocolate chip pancakes.  I ordered French toast with strawberries because it’s predictable and I felt like carb loading for a gruelling day of fall fair touring and couch sitting.  Some restaurants slice actual strawberries on the toast but I was pretty sure I’d receive some sort of strawberry sauce on top.  Yum!

Out came my food and it looked like someone had poured runny jam all over it and buried two red lumps within.  But it tasted like a compote of raspberry and rhubarb, tart and unappealing, and those two lumps were indeed strawberries, barely qualifying it for what I had ordered. I quietly scraped the offensive goop off of the bread and ate what I could.  The restaurant was busy and I wasn’t about to make a big, hairy deal out of it.  However, I would say something to the server so she could pass the message on.

She leaned over to take my plate and I sort of held it back saying sweetly, “It wasn’t very good”.  She lunged forward and grabbed the plate.  “I’ll let him know!” she snapped.  I was stunned.  Didn’t she even want to know what was wrong?  “Not very good” is a pretty vague complaint and difficult to interpret.  But she was gone in a puff of icing sugar and coffee steam.

When she returned a while later I said, “You know, that French toast topping was pretty bitter.”  “Oh really.”  That was her reply as she quickly turned heel, almost sending shards of bacon skillet out of the nose of our friend as he unintentionally snorted a laugh at her dismissive tone.  She could not have cared any less.  A few minutes later she came back and hissed, “He said to take 10% off your order.”  Well that .49 might mean a lot to some people but I’d rather they took a moment to listen to my complaint so they could spare anyone else the unhappiness of experiencing that meal!  But it was not to be.

For goodness sake, lady, if you really don’t care, it’s part of your job to at least fake it.  I can’t possibly be the only person who left the restaurant that morning, literally, with a bad taste in my mouth.