Monday, August 3, 2009


I keep thinking I've posted this, but can't seem to locate it in the archives. So if I have, please SOMEBODY tell me, and I'll zip it away and replace it. I just wouldn't like to think you were sorta looking at each other with a little bit of eyeroll. "The poor old dear---getting forgetful, I see. Well, we'll all be like that someday, I guess, Bless Her Heart."

Polite restraint to spare my feelings would be wasted. I wanna know these things---if you're told you have a run in your stocking, and it's still five hours til you can go home, there's nothing you can do, so I'd as soon not know.

But if my slip's showing or I've got lipstick on my teeth---speak OUT---I'll thank you for it and repay in kind when needed. And not just ladies, either---we have five sons, and I've been known to offer a perfect stranger the kindness of a discreet, "Zip up." Digression, digression.

Several years go, we went to Cracker Barrel for breakfast. Chris always has the pancake breakfast with all the extras--eggs and bacon and grits and the fruit sauce and the "whipped cream." We were waited on by a young lady who told us right off the bat that it was her first day.

She flustered her way through setting down water glasses, did manage to give us a menu each, and told us breathlessly that she was new and they had given her four tables and she just could not keep up and got someone else to take two of them, and she was just going to have one, now, and that was us.

Not knowing quite how to take the undivided attention, and hoping for the best, we ordered, as she laboriously wrote on the pad, like a stenographer who is just learning shorthand. Tell, write, pause. Repeat.

And with the "over easy" and the "cherry sauce, please," she was just out of her depth. We patiently, slowly enunciated our order, and she left to get the drinks. She returned with two iced teas. Chris asked for lemon. She went away and returned with two wedges lying forlornly on her cork tray, no bowl or saucer. She picked them up one at a time in her fingers, looked around bewildered for somewhere to put them, and set them neatly onto the tabletop, balanced and rocking on their little round sides.

We held our giggles til she left, and shared the laugh with several folks nearby, as they had been watching in amazement. Her progress down the aisle could be followed by the "I just can't DO four tables" concerto, and she had repeated it to perhaps six nearby groups, before she finally returned with our food.

It was surprisingly accurate, though she had forgotten the napkins. And Chris said he'd like to get the whipped cream for his pancakes. She fled and returned, walking slowly and carefully, a small bowl of fluffy white grasped in front of her like a child carrying soup.

Which it was, alas. The fresh-from-the-hot-dishwasher bowl she had sprayed the cream into had melted all the bottom additives, making a whey-ish liquid topped by a cloud of cream, which followed Newton's First---when she reached across to set it down, it kept going, slid out of the bowl and went PLOOP! right into his crotch.

There he sat, neatly garnished, while the whole place Hee-Hawed.

Complain to the manager? I’ll say NOT!! I’d PAY to see that again.


Southern Lady said...

Rachel, I laughed at loud at the picture you conjured up of Chris with the whipped cream in his lap. Wish I could have been there !

I loved your THEE-ate-ah story, too. It brought back so many fond memories of magical hours spent at a movie house just like the one from your childhood. It was a time of innocence and sweetness, wasn't it.

Tonja said...

Funny! Funny! I bet you she has never forgotten that incident either!

Keetha said...

Bless her heart! That waitress was blessed to have you two good-humored people as her customers!

Nail said...

Where does Cracker Barrel get their employees anyway. We were in one in Tyler, TX and when the waitress came by to get our drink orders, we said "Hello, how are you this evening?" Talk about opening the door....30 minutes later she was still telling us about her boyfriend who was outside in the truck because he didn't trust her to be at work without him, yada yada yada....It was really funny as we were all making eyes at each other wondering when it would end!

I laughed so hard at the whipped cream in Chris' lap. I wish everyone knew him and they would realize just how funny that was!!!

racheld said...

Doesn't he just take things light-heartedly? Except for me, I don't think anyone laughed more at this than he did.

We agreed to leave a double-tip that day, as we seemed to be her only source of income. Besides, we STILL laugh about it. I really don't think we paid her enough.

Kouign Aman said...

I made my husband pause his movie so he could share my laughter at this story.:)