I've been so busy dealing with the tantrumtastic ways of my toddler lately that I have failed to notice, for the most part, the spoiled brats of the adult kind. But this week-end, after witnessing someone spending 15 minutes ordering, then rejecting, then re-specifying, then re-tasting, then rejecting again, then re-ordering and re-iterating a simple coffee drink order at Starbucks, it made me want to write this blog. When have we as a society of adults decided that it is okay to behave like a 2 year old bent on having his own way, or else? Some examples:
- I want a tall drip in a venti cup with 5 shots of espresso but make it organic coffee medium dark from Colombia not that light Ethiopian brew and I want half of milk but don't steam it, I don't want any foam, repeat, NO FOAM AT ALL, but don't have it cold either warm it up, but without making any foam and not too hot please or I will sue and not too cold it hurts my teeth, and I don't want organic milk or fat free milk but lowfat and how come you don't have lactose free non soy milk? And I want 2 sugars in it no not white, splenda, equal or sweet n low but half brown sugar and half organic honey and please have a better attitude young man! This is a very simple order.
-I want scrambled eggs, half white only and half with the yellow stuff, and I want you to add a sprinkle, repeat A SPRINKLE of swiss cheese but make sure it is baby swiss cheese as it has less fat and also could you please add some basil and one quarter of tomatos, sliced thinly, I don't want big chunks, and on the side I want half of fat free cottage cheese and half of regular cottage cheese, and instead of toast, I want bagel lightly toasted (no black part please) with some cream cheese but I want it on the side and also if you could bring me a cup of fruit but make it seasonal fruit only and bring it 10 minutes before my egg order not at the same time or later and...
When I hear these things, I just want to crawl 6 feet under. Of course, the restaurant industry at least here in Southern California, is totally enabling and even encouraging this type of behavior too. It's not enough that the menu is 40 pages long and that you have 36 choices for lunch including one "create your own dish" because god knows 36 choices is too restrictive, but even if you abide by one of the menu's dishes, you are hit left and right with a machine gun style interrogation worthy of Guantanamo:
_Would you like that rare, medium rare, medium, medium well, or well? Grilled, fried, roasted, sauteed or broiled? French Fries, baked potato, roasted potatos, steamed brocolli, root vegetables, wasabi mashed potato, cauliflower puree or green beans on the side? White, wheat, foccacia, ciabatta sourdough or pumpernickel? Flat, sparkling, tap, non tap, spring, diet, or vitamin added water for the table?
And it goes on and on and on...
I wonder what these people would do if they end up in a famine and war stricken country with starving children who have to survive on rationed charity in order to make it to the next day.
-Would you like a cup of white rice with a side of malaria, malnutrition, yellow fever, tuberculosis or mine-blown limb on the side?
-Ummm.... Give me a mine-blown limb but very lightly blown please and none of that mine debris
-Okay, would you like left arm, right arm, left leg, right leg, left ear or right ear blown off?
-Ummmmmm... interesting, could you give me a few minutes?
It was cute when Meg Ryan did it in When Harry met Sally but honestly, they didn't show them twenty years later when Harry was about to take a shotgun to her after he finally snapped at one more apple pie but hold the apple order. And let's face it, you people ain't Meg Ryan!!!
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