older, more mature

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I have a habit of shutting down if I am out in public near someone who is having a really loud, really obnoxious conversation. I think, God, I hope I don't sound like that. And then I stop talking because I don't want to be like the annoying, half-yelling person who is subjecting the entire world to his or her opinions, whether we want to hear them or not.

This happened last night. Todd took me to Scopa (one of the restaurants on my must-eat list) for my birthday. This place is literally the size of a shoebox, and our table was about an inch away from the couple dining next to us. (In fact, when we arrived for our reservation, this couple had to scramble to gather up all their belongings off of our seats and replace our candle, which they had taken and put on their own table to help them read their menus. Apparently their own candle wasn't good enough, and they had to use ours too. I should've viewed this as a sign of what was to come. Hindsight is always 20-20.)

Our dinner was immediately hijacked by our neighbors' conversation, which of course, was nothing short of extremely annoying. First of all, the woman barely spoke because her husband talked non-stop and wouldn't let her get a word in. He instructed her on how to eat her food and even gave her pointers on exactly how she should hold her bread to properly mop up her leftover pasta sauce. He then told the server that he makes linguine and clams at home "all the time" and lectured her on how his recipe differs from Scopa's. (Which makes me wonder: Why the hell would you go out to a nice restaurant and order something you make at home "all the time," especially if you feel compelled to tell the restaurant how to make the dish? Shouldn't you branch out?)

And then the man said: "We are living the lifestyle, aren't we? We go to Healdsburg and Europe. We travel to all of these nice places. What a lifestyle!"

This was the final straw.

It was my birthday, goddammit. I didn't want to eat in silence because the Dining Partner from Hell had to brag out loud to the universe about his amazing jet-setting lifestyle.

So I said: "Have you ever known anyone who's had tapeworm?"

This prompted Todd to tell a story about one of his teachers in high school who described having tapeworm as "a noodle sticking out of his butt." He then wiggled his index finger to further illustrate said worm.

Scopa is an Italian restaurant, and our neighbors had just eaten two large bowls of linguine and clams.

The look on Mr. Lifestyle's face was truly priceless.

We then proceeded to discuss hookworm and ringworm. And underarm boils. ("A boil!" Todd exclaimed, like he had just won the lottery.)

It was a lovely evening. And the food was good, too.


Kate said...

Yours was a completely appropriate reaction, and this is a fantastic story.

Jennifer said...

That's f-ing awesome. I love it.

And that photo makes me so hungry. I want pasta now.

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