It was a nice sunny winter
afternoon. I'd been running around getting ready for the holidays, trying to avoid all the psychos fighting for toys for their kids, which, as I'm sure you know, makes a man very hungry. With my tummy grumbling, I drove to my favorite little obscure Thai restaurant
A nice waitress came and brought me to my table and got me some tea. At the table in front of me sat two business men, loudly discussing the banal trifles of office-life. The waitress came and took my order, which was rather large, as I was very hungry. As I sat there, happily sipping my tea, a man and his son were brought to the table adjacent to mine.
"Excuse me missy!" said the man, much too loudly. "Can we get some of those crunchy things with the red sauce?" he asked with an exaggerated drawl. The waitress said, "Oh, sir, we only have those for the dinner menu, we make them fresh everyday. We give you some soup, ok?" "Alright, I guess." grumbled the man.
I giggled to myself as my meal arrived. I began piling rice, pepper garlic beef, and pad keemao onto my plate, drawing strange looks from the people at the tables around me. The waitress also brought the man and his son their soup. They tentatively sipped at it. "Excuse me ma'am, this soup's gone bad! It's sour!" the man said. "Oh, that because it sour-spicy soup, sir!" "Sour-spicy?" he said, as if it were from mars. "Don't y'all have any plain ol' egg-drop soup?, he asked. "Oh no sir, that's a Chinese food." the waitress patiently explained.
Then she asked them if they were ready to order. "Sure are! Go ahead, son." said the man. "Hi, can I have some chow mein
with no meat and no vegetables please? Oh yeah, and some fried rice, but I don't want any vegetables in that either. Oh, and a coke please." ordered the son. The waitress looked perplexed
. "No vegetables and no meat? You want tofu
instead?" she asked, trying to be helpful. "Oh, gross, no!" squealed the acne-farm. "Sir, we make our fried-rice in big batch, there are only some carrots and tomatoes in it, we can't make without." said the waitress. Annoyed, the son asked obnoxiously, "Well, can't you like try not to get too many into mine?" "Okay..." said the waitress, trying not to let on that she thought he was off his rocker
"I'll have some lo mein and kung pao chicken please" ordered the man. The waitress began to giggle, "Sir, we don't have kung pao chicken or lo mein, it not in the menu!" "No kung pao chicken?", asked the man incredulously, "What kind of Chinese restaurant is this?!" he asked, and gave her a look as if her head had been replaced with a giant pumpkin. "Sir, this is Thai restaurant, we have Thai food here! You should try something like he have!" said the waitress, gesturing towards me. "It's good! You will like it!" she added, still trying to be polite and helpful.
"Well, ain't Taiwan in China? Don't they have Chinese food there?", asked the man very loudly, drawing the attention of the entire restaurant. At this point, I grew tired of watching him berate my favorite waitress. "Get a map, buddy! Thai food comes from Thailand, not Taiwan. But here's an idea: why don't you give me the twenty bucks you're going to spend on your meal, and I'll go out and buy you some ramen, fry it up in ketchup for ya. That'd probably suit your tastes better."
Everyone laughed. The man's face turned apple-red. You could almost see little puffs of steam shooting out of his ears. "Fuck this place!" yelled the man. "Come on James, let's go to Taco Bell and get us some Mexican food!" he shouted.
And with that, they dropped five bucks on the table for the soup and walked out.
"We get people like that all the time," said the waitress, "they don't even know where Canada is, how they supposed to know that Thailand is not in China?" I laughed and apologized for making them leave. "Oh, don't worry," she said to me, "people like that never leave good tip anyway!"
We laughed and made fun of the yokels for a few more minutes, then she went and got me my check. As I looked it over, I saw that she'd not charged me for my noodles. On the back of the check, she had scrawled, "Thanks for sweeping out the dirt!"