how to avoid pretty much anyone, even if you’re famous like me.

10 Oct

A frequent recurring trend among restaurant owners is that we eat at places other than our own establishment.

It seems fairly reasonable to us. Sometimes you don’t want to eat the same identical cuisine 35,430 meals in a row. Sometimes you want to be served by a waiter who you don’t know streaked across the parking lot the other night. Sometimes you want to steal other people’s ideas. Sometimes you want to let your kid make a huge fucking mess on the floor* and then leave the premises. Sometimes you want to tip 15% on poor-to-mediocre service and run for the door. And you know what? That’s alright by me. However to you, the customer, the act is completely inexplicable. For the past 20whatever years, every single time we run into a customer at a restaurant, (which is like all the time because we’re famous) we are greeted with a hearty “You’re not allowed to eat heeeerrrrrrreeeee!!!!!!”

Um, yes we most certainly are allowed to eat here. Really, shouldn’t it be the other way around? If you are MY customer, then you should be eating in MY restaurant. Unless we’re at Indian or Vegan food (which I assure you, we are not) then the only place YOU are expected to be is eating the many delicious dishes at my cozy establishment. I’ve got college educations to pay for and it’s all literally going to boil down to your ravioli 2 times a week.

That’s the thing about owning a restaurant like mine. I run it, so I have to really get to know my customers. It gets pretty deep. I talk to everyone, and pretend I think they’re funny/intelligent/nice even when I know very well they’re not. I also have to sometimes act like their husbands aren’t SO sexy or that their kids aren’t SO ugly. I also have to share things about my family (photos of my kids on my iPhone with random self portraits and drunk pictures, quirky stories about how UNFANTASTIC it is to work with your husband and parents, where I shop for my Saturday bras, whether or not Harry and I are trying to conceive) and I’m truly not one to share personal aspects of my life. I don’t know if this is obvious by my ramblings, but I’m actually like really shy and totally loathe human interaction in a way that many people would take medication for.

It is for this reason alone that I am currently hiding under a table in the corner of a Panerabread with a hoodie on, with my laptop open only enough for me to fit my fingers on the keys so as to not draw attention with the bright lights of the screen. I don’t want to get lectured for patronizing a foodservice establishment other than my own. And I DEFINITELY don’t want to chat. It’s way too early, and I forgot my lipstick and I should only have to fake enthusiasm with these duds when I’m at work. This said Panerabread is located only about half a mile from my restaurant, and 3/4 of the people sitting above me at chair level are customers whose faces I recognize. The other 1/4 are most likely either infrequent customers, too generic to remember or they hide under my tables so I don’t know what they look like.

Other than hiding behind furniture, there is one way of avoiding people that I find works every time. You can implement it into your everyday life, such as with the kiosk lady at the mall who wants to ask you if you have artificial nails or your high school English teacher who knows you cheated on the final and definitely recognizes you at the Indigo Girls concert you’re both at. Here it is. Don’t tell your friends or you won’t be able to efficiently ignore them. Ok here it is. Secret to avoiding people:

ONLY MAKE EYE CONTACT WITH INANIMATE OBJECTS.

I did this today at the supermarket when I nearly ran into a customer for whom I did a party. Under some circumstances, it would have been nice to see her. But I was in a rush, she’s definitely not the type to just wave hello and rush on by, and I just wasn’t feeling it. So I stared town that box of green tea like it was gonna run away. And VOILA! No convo needed!

OMG Sidebar. A girl just walked by wearing a little pink denim skirt, striped oxford, blue sweater tied over her shoulders and a bow in her hair. She looked adorable. Is there some sort of part time job that I can get so I can wear shit like that? Like the American Girls store or High School or H&M or something like that. Oh shit, she just passed again. Her shoes are adorbs too. If I weren’t deep in this important document I’d totally follow her and see if they’re hiring. Unless it’s the Gap. Been there, done that. Although they were playing country music there the other day so maybe I’d consider it.

Anyway, being famous in a small town is really tough. You get no privacy whatsoever. People are always wanting to talk to you. They ask such irritating things like “How are you?” and “How’s the family?” and “Is the skirt steak gluten free?” and, worst of all, “How’s your dad?”

My dad is famous too, only he’s more famous in Nassau County and I’m more famous in Suffolk County. Specifically only one town in Suffolk County, and really only one little part of that town. What I’m trying to say is that my dad is more famous than me. But I’m more potentially famous, specifically because of my blog (You know, the one I haven’t written in like a month ever since new TV started) and like maybe I can get some press as like “a restaurant owner who dresses slutty on the weekends so customers will be nice to her.”  I think if you were going to equate us to any father-daughter duo, it would be like Gene Simmons’s nobody daughter trying out for X Factor, except that my dad wears more makeup and I’m a better singer.

Unlike me, my dad never hid under tables . He stood on them (before his cardiologist told him to please stop). That’s what makes him way popular. In fact, already today like 13 people have asked me the dreaded “how’s your dad?” question. What am I supposed to say? “He’s good, right now he’s napping with the baby, and at 4 he’s going to watch Judge Judy.” No, that’s probably not a good idea.

Maybe next time I’ll stare at a very important document so the question doesn’t have to be an issue.

*Speaking of children making huge messes on the floor, I thought I’d share a lovely little story from last night’s dinner service. A little 2 year old comes in with her parents and grandparents. She’s cute. Obviously not as cute as my babygirl, but cute. Anyway, I’m in the other room putting glitter on some masks and doing other important stuff like that, and I keep hearing the kid making choking noises. They’re intermittent so I figure there’s no need to worry and yada yada yada, she threw up her mac and cheese all over the table. Her mother insisted it not be cleaned up because “She’s not done yet,” and the child ate her regurgitated mac and cheese (again). Lesson of the day: If your kid vomits in public and wants to eat it, kindly get a doggy bag.

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