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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Pick your poison with care

There are many disadvantages to being partnered with a man of Italian descent.

Two of the more obvious disadvantages are pasta and pizza.

Without the wish to become too highbrow, in genetic parlance, this is a bit of a double whammie, as these loathsome menu choices also find favour with 3 of my four children: a dominant gene no doubt.

In my limited experience , if a restaurant commonly provides pasta and pizza, they rarely serve fries. Currently, the only food on any menu, that my youngest son eats, would be fries. Hence my current research project to find the restaurant that served all three items. My studies are hampered due to the three persistent phrases that my son perseverates upon: 'responsible, responsibull, responsiball,' 'shake your booty' and 'Egg nog, epilogue.' I hope that at least one of them is merely seasonal. These phrases whirl around me in a continuous stream as I hunt the internet for the perfect restaurant.

As we are in the heart of Silicon Valley, this should not be too much of a trial. I should point out that there are a wide choice of cuisines available to suit nearly every palate. There are any number of curious combinations such as steak and shrimp, served on the very same plate. I kid you not. This is the land where an entre is the main course, rather than an appetizer, but maybe that's just to punish the French? It is also the land where individual salads are served in dishes the size of a washing up bowl. If you would like a pound of cheese on your pizza, no-one will give you grief. If applesauce can be a starter, there is no cheese board available to finish up a meal. Anything is possible out here, but I defy you to find a pizza with an anchovy on it in the whole of this land. How can a whole nation hate anchovies and yet have also invented Caesar salad? Thus it was, that before too long, I found the perfect place.

Once we were installed in the perfect place and placed our orders, I took my youngest, fries eating son, to the stalls. He is still at the tender age where it is not safe for him to visit the bathroom alone. His privacy or other people’s, is of no concern to him. Whilst I have never had cause to climb the walls in a stall, I expect that it would be possible. Mind you, if I were only 6 years old, that might be a bit more of a feat as there is the height to wall ratio. To make the feat of climbing the walls of a stall even more challenging, it might be an idea to attempt to reach the top of the stall wall in under a second. Do you think that might be possible?

Well I am here to tell you that I witnessed just such a feat, with my very own little eyes. If I had blinked I would have missed it of course, but I didn’t miss it because the scream that he uttered was enough to puncture an ear drum. But I suppose that’s only to be expected if you’re not expecting a random event, such as a toilet that flushes automatically.

If by any chance, you happen to be the woman in the next stall from us, let me take this opportunity to apologise to you, without reserve. I assure you with my hand on my heart that there was nothing personal in his remark. I can barely imagine how I would feel myself, were I in your unfortunate position. You had already left by the time I had managed to persuade him to come down from his perch. I too would have been surprised to find a small boy's head hanging over the top of the wall. He really isn't a peeping Tom. He had no interest in your business, really. Would it help if I explained that he has no volume control, he always bellows? Would it have been any better if he has whispered "shake your booty!"

Probably not.

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