Chaos Attraction

Cream of What?

2003-04-14, 8:34 p.m.

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So at work today, we were going out for a change, and we went to the Silo Pub. This is the one "real" restaurant on campus, and I've always thought it was pretty much the faculty/staff only or something, because they serve alcohol. I was all excited since I'd never even seen the place before and had thought it was "off-limits" to the likes of I. Oh, the joys of being staff.

So we go in, and it's nice decor, pretty wood tables, etc. The menu's a tad small (four salads, four sandwiches, three appetizers kinda small), but oh well, it is lunch, and it's more exotic than the usual on campus.

There's a lucky 13 of us that show up, which may have been a hint of things to come. Eight of us, the first to arrive, at one table, the other five at the other. The server says "I'll go get the other table first, since they're smaller." Perhaps this was also a hint.

One coworker, we'll call him K., was very concerned about what soups they were offering. The names were something like "osco pasta" and "cream of bertilini," so we had no idea what this actually entailed in the food. So we ask the server when she finally gets to our table what these are, and she says, "I don't know." First time I've EVER been to a restaurant where the server had no idea what the food was about. She had no interest in finding out either, though "I heard from someone that the osco is kinda peppery." Well, gee, that was a help.

So we give our orders and we wait. Three quesadillas, two portabello mushroom sandwiches, one steak sandwich. P. orders a turkey BLT minus the B, but figures she'll end up with the B anyway. I order a Chinese chicken salad with wontons.

About oh, 20, 25 minutes in, the table of five gets their food. Those who ordered a meal that came with soup at our table got up and served themselves, and we found that the "cream of bertilini" was some kind of pasta, and the "osco pasta" didn't seem to have much pasta, but did have shitloads of pepper.

The rest of us wait.

And wait.

And wait.

It's 12:45 before any food at our table gets to our table. Three out of eight plates. Note that we work for the "Time Nazi" (I swear I didn't make that up, someone else did), so the timing of the meal is kind of a concern. One of those missing her food, M., asks for a box even before it comes.

At 12:50, the next batch of food comes, and everyone but me (who ordered the salad, mind you) gets their food. The food in general is reported to be barely warm, but not hot or rather cold, depending. The fries were barely not icy. P. predictably gets bacon on her her TLT, but refuses to send it back because she knows what'll happen.

My food is nowhere to be seen. We try asking the busboy who brought the rest out where it is, he says, "I dunno, ask your server." Our server walks out with two Chinese chicken salads and tries to foist them off to a table behind us, which appears to have only ordered one. We yell that that belongs over here, and she refuses to deliver it, saying "It's on a separate ticket." (We were ALL on separate tickets, and apparently only one person at the table she was hovering order had ordered a salad, not two!) Someone gives M. a large takeout box. P. gives up on eating the sandwich and gives it to me, since it doesn't seem like I'll be getting any food!

At 12:53, I finally get my salad, minus wontons. It's edible, at least. I'm trying to choke food down ASAP, and ask for a box. No response. My other coworker J. asks for one too. All servers in the room try to avoid eye contact with our table or going anywhere near it, other than to try to take away plates that were just handed out about eight minutes ago. Meanwhile, someone at the other table asks for a box and gets it, I go beg that server for boxes since she actually seems to be handing them out.

We finally get boxes, which are...half the size of the kind M. got earlier. I smash all of my food into the thing, literally. Had to pound on the lid.

I had on me a $20, one $5, and 4 $1's, and the meal came to $8 and change. It was bad enough that I left a 31-cent tip. I wouldn't have left any, really, but hell, getting change back from these people was just not worth the effort. Short of having someone puke in the food, I'm not sure it could have gotten any worse.

P. and I mobbed the front table on our way out and made sure to fill out comment cards on the meal. We assume they will be chucked into the trash immediately upon our departure.

We'd been making comments throughout the "meal" about how presumably these were servers in training or something...but normally, no one on campus is this bad. On our way out, I said, "I've gotten better service from freshmen at the Carl's Jr." "What server, Jennifer? You didn't get one!" J. said.

Afterwards, I overheard someone else say to P., "Man, we'll have to ask Jennifer later if that sandwich (yes, I took it, I was hungry, dammit) makes her sick." "That's comforting!" I yelled back across the office.

Next time, we're ordering pizza.

I ended up doing some heavy spending today, for which I shall be hanging my head in shame. (Though hey, between refunds, money owed and rebates, at least some of this will be returning to me...theoretically...someday).

I bought tickets to a show by Margaret Cho next month. I can't remember if I mentioned it earlier in here, but back in February I saw a listing for her show, thought "Oh, GOODY!" at first, then figured, "Oh, wait, it's at the ChiChi Theater. Not affordable, nevermind." Well, I saw a poster for it yesterday on the way home, and it was on May 11. Not only will I actually be in town that night, so will Dave. Who I told about this and was all, "Hey, see if you can still get tickets." Amazingly, the tickets weren't as bad as I figured. So what the hell.

Also, last night for some reason I was surfing the Palm web site again, and was checking that deal I saw earlier where if you bought a 705 by the end of April and signed up for Palm service, you could get a $50 rebate. Even better...they've dropped the price of that Palm AGAIN! (I heard Palm wasn't doing well, but man!) It's gone from $400 to $200 to $159 in a year! So the whole thing will come to a bit over $200 even before the rebate comes in. NOT BAD!

And I have to admit, there's two factors influencing this:

(a) I'm REALLY getting tired of the AAA battery issue with mine, particularly what happens if I drop it and end up wiping the memory. While out of town.

(b) if Dave and I aren't going to be able to have long phone conversations any more (though now he's considering caving in and getting a landline after all the phone lines in the house are replaced so they can use the MONTH), and I keep going to my mom's, this will improve communication mightily if I have wireless access.

So I'm getting that too.

I need to be good the rest of this month: No more spending other than birthday presents and 3wa donations.

(Though I am now kinda thinking about getting some dye and tie-dyeing the shirt I did on Saturday again, as I'm just not all that happy with how it came out and I feel like messing with it again while Hill's gone for the week. At least that wouldn't cost much...I restrained myself on buying a kit today, but who knows about tomorrow with me...)

Just for fun, I asked a career-type question on this astrology chat on the Washington Post site and got this comment (I said I felt like I was doing Saturn Return early):

"Saturn Return are not disasterous - they set us on a valuable course. But often we have to be pushed and prodded onto that course.

So you have sun in taurus, mercury in aries, venus in taurus and mars in leo. You are generally very careful and practical. A bit slow to take action but once you do, there is no stopping you! You are a fast and bold thinker and communicator.

Possibly scorpio rising. You have Jupiter in your 10th house of career. This planet has been retrograde since Dec 02 so things may have felt unsettling or stagnant or upended in unexpected ways. Jupiter is now direct and you can move forward in a good and profitable direction professionally.

Leo on your 10th house indicates that you need a career that allows you to be the center of attention, recieve praise on a regular basis and work independently. Look into something more creative and theatrical. SOmething that gets you in front of a crowd or reaching the public in some way. Something fun, perhaps something with children?"

Well, okay, I dunno about the child aspect, but the rest sure seems accurate, especially me for some reason wanting a profession where I get to work on my own and yet be a fame whore.

But how to get to that, I don't know.

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