Archive for April, 2009

Yesterday’s Outing

The kid got far enough in her schoolwork early enough in the day that I was able to justify us going out for lunch as a treat rather than just eating at home. + 1 Unfortunately this would require that I leave the house -1, but it was getting rolled into a library trip that we already needed to take. +1

We went out for sushi (always +2, because it is sushi) but sushi in MN completely stresses me out because the quality to price ratio is offensive to my sensibilities -1 and sitting in the restaurant looking at the menu just made me ache for CA -1.

We ordered our food and it took FOREVER even though everybody there already had their food. I ordered their “14 piece sashimi combination chef’s choice“. When my food arrived the waiter said “Here is your 14 piece sashimi combo,” and he placed a plate containing 12 pieces of sashimi in front of me -1. Along with the mistake itself, this was also stressful because A) I was already stressed about the pricing to quality ratio. B) in order to have any hope of fixing it I was going to have to SPEAK TO THE WAITER AGAIN. (I hate extra interaction, it is off my rehearsed script for the outing and is really not my favorite) C) I could not help thinking about the huge potential for annoyance depending on their response. -2 (in some ways, because of who I am, this is -100 for the restaurant, but I am trying to be somewhat more “reasonable” while still be honest about who I am, so for the outing I’ll just give it a -2).

I tell the waiter, “This is probably going to seem really picky, but there are only 12 pieces of sashimi.”

“Huh, that’s weird,” he responds, “Would you like two more pieces?”

You think?

“Umm… yes,” I offer him back the plate, but he declines indicating he’ll just bring it on a side plate. He walks half the distance to the sushi bar (we sat at a table) and announces, “You only put 12 pieces on that 14 piece plate.” Now the whole restaurant knows I complained. -1

The chef says something back, which I cannot hear, and the waiter comes back over and asks, “Do you know what you’re missing?”

“No…” I push he plate toward him again, and he says “I’ll just show this to him so he knows what is missing,” and takes the plate away.

I look at the kid and announce, “Chef’s choice – I choose to give you two less pieces!”

The waiter brings my plate back with the missing 2 pieces of sashimi plus a bonus piece. +.5

We eat our food, sharing mediocre food back and forth and chatting about stuff. We goof off playing perspective games pretending to squash each other’s heads with chopsticks. Yay table manners. I take a photograph to post on the internet. +2

We finish up and the waiter drops off our bill. I look at the total and that surge of MN sushi pricing stress washes over me, -1 and I see that the top line item is:

WATER (2 @ 1.50) 3.00

“You’ve got to be kidding,” I say.

“What?” the kid wants to know, so I just push the bill over to her and she looks at it. “What…? No. NO!” she takes a photo of the bill.

I get out my credit card and text the husband something that includes swearing and the word never.

The waiter comes over to pick up the card, and I ask, “Do you really charge for water?”

He laughs.

Then he looks at me like I am a freak because I am not laughing at my funny joke, and explains “I just add it so that I don’t forget to bring the water.”

Then he looks uncomfortable because I am still staring at him with a question on my face.

Then he opens up the folder and looks at the bill.

“Huh, that’s weird,” he says. He wanders off and goes to punch buttons on the computer for a bit. That does not seem to work because next he asks the sushi chef about it. The sushi chef knows nothing. Next thing we know, he is on the phone talking to somebody, loudly apologizing for interrupting.

The conversation goes on for a while. It keeps getting louder. Extra interaction, again -1 and it is causing too much noticeable fuss, making me feel troublesome -1 and it is happening loud enough that I feel conspicuous to other diners -1.

The louder and longer the phone call goes on, the kid turns more and more magenta trying to hold back her laughter. It is a surprising color and somewhat amusing to me +1.

He finally comes back with a revised bill charged to my card and I sign it and we get out of there as quickly as possible.

“I’m the most disagreeable customer they’ve ever had,” I tell the kid as soon as we get out the door. She bursts out laughing.

Next we go to the library. I like the library. It is big and clean +1 and full of books +1. It is also highly automated and I can check books in and check them out without ever having to speak to anyone +2!

The kid goes to find the books she has on reserve, which also does not require speaking to anyone +1 and I go to pull a couple of books from the shelf that I want her to check out. The first one is listed as being in Teen Fiction Book WREDE and I go to the shelf marked TEEN FICTION T-Z and TEEN NONFICTION and I locate the book and pick it up. I then switch to looking in the small teen nonfiction section of the shelf for the other book, but when I cannot find it I look at my note again – Children’s Nonfiction Book 510 and realize it is listed as children and not teen. I go over to the children’s area, where there are children being unpleasantly behaved and kidhandling books with little parental supervision -1. I wander around trying to find the shelf marked CHILDREN NONFICTION but cannot find it. I wander and wander and fear that I am going to have to go speak to a person. -1 The kid finds me and asks me what I am looking for and I tell her I am looking for the children’s nonfiction section and she points to nonfiction and says “Nonfiction is there.” I start to correct her, but then see in small print on the NONFICTION signs “children’s books too”. I do not understand why “teen nonfiction” gets its own section and “children’s” gets mixed in with the rest of nonfiction. I go and get that book. +1

Then I looked for something for me to read. Before I left the house I had looked for things I wanted to read, but nothing was checked in -1, so I had put several books on reserve. I still wanted something to read. I ended up grabbing Jim Butcher’s Furies of Calderon and a featured teen book by Stephanie Hemphill, Things Left Unsaid, a novel in poems, because I was interested in the format. Neither were things I had been looking forward to reading, but at least I found something before I overloaded on being around people and had to leave without. +1

Next I went to Micheal’s to pick up something that the kid wanted, because I had a coupon. +1

Finally we went home, forgetting to take care of the post office errand. -1 On the other hand, I didn’t have to set foot in the post office. +1

This leaves me with a total score of 1.5, so I win this round of the leaving my house game!


Leave a comment