Can’t Take Us Anywhere

Clint and I have been holding on to a $100 gift card to a wine bar near us for over two years. We would make plans to use it, and then think, “Naah. Let’s wait for (insert reason here).” This sucker was eating a proverbial hole in my pocket. An opportunity to dine at a restaurant we would never be able to otherwise afford was passing us by.


Last night, we finally used the gift card. We asked our friends to come along and help us use it up, since we didn’t think we’d be able to burn $100 ourselves.

Well, as it turns out, we learned two things last night:

1.When you dine at fancy places, it is quite simple to burn through $100, and

2.We are totally not mature enough to eat at places that list prices on the menu as 25.5 or 33.0. (Because, you know, it is way more sophisticated to list prices without being encumbered by that pesky dollar sign and digit. (Okay, I know, it’s European. But I’m ‘Merican, goshdarnit, and I like my symbols and digits! (And parenthesis.)))

Straight off the bat, we were the rowdiest restaurant patrons, and we hadn’t even had a sip of (super overpriced) wine. We were also notably the youngest in the restaurant. By about 30 decades (and I’m being generous here).

The jokes started immediately. After more deliberating than was really necessary, we finally decided on a bottle of wine to share (“…the one just above the least expensive, so they don’t think we’re totally cheap,” Michelle suggested. Seemed rational to me.) “We’ll take your finest boxed wine,” Peter said, after the waiter left. “Send over the Franzia, please.” We laughed louder than was appropriate.

Our wine was opened and the waiter showed Michelle the label.

“Mmm, nice,” she nodded and I snort laughed because I knew she had NO idea what she was supposed to be looking at.

“Who would like to taste this first?” the waiter asked.

“Lindsay would,” Michelle replied.

So, he poured a taste into my glass. I swished it around because I’m pretty sure that’s what you’re supposed to do, but I knew what was going to happen next: The burgundy liquid in my glass was going to taste like wine. I admit it. I am not a wine connoisseur. I like wine, but I do not have a refined palate. I do not have the income to have a refined wine palate.

“What do you think?” he asked.

Seriously, what was I going to say?

“Deplorable! Take this away this instant, you servant! When I order the second cheapest bottle of wine you carry, I expect it to make my tastebuds scream out in ecstacy. Everything I put in my mouth henceforward should taste like sun-dried slug slime compared to the overwhelming delight of this succulent inebriant.”

Um. No.

“Mmmm. It’s really nummy,” I replied. (BTW “nummy” is not a sophisticated word.)

Our bread arrived next and the waiter held out a dish containing three different butter spreads.

“Briefly,” he said, “I’d like to explain what these are.”

I still don’t know what they were, because I was too busy coming up with my smartass remark, which occurred when he had finished explaining our gourmet butter.

“Now, explain it extensively.”

I only earned a snicker from that one, and an amused head shake from the waiter, but I thought it was funny.

Our dinner arrived and it was totally mouth-wateringly delicious. Worth every penny we didn’t actually spend. But, as is the case for any fancy-schmancy restaurant, the portions were infinitesimal. Plus, I think they traded my supposed gourmet braised beef for pot roast with a bunch of green crap slapped on top of it.

After the meal was over, I lifted my mini wine glass that had been filled, and kept full by our doting waiter. I swirled the water around and placed it beneath my nose.

“Good year,” I said, taking a sip. “There’s definitely a hint of… is that oak? Pepper?”

Clint lifted his water and took a delicate sip.

“I would say this originated from… hm,” he took another sip. “Yep, just as I thought. This is vintage tap water. I’d say its origination date was June 19th- no, wait- 18th, 2011.”

Sometime around this point, Peter lifted the candle lantern thing from the middle of the table, thinking it was a battery-powered LED light, and discovering that it was, in fact, and oil lamp when he dropped it.

It seemed like a great time to take our leave.

Needless to say, we won’t be going back there any time soon. We would have fit in much better at oh, say, Chuck E Cheese. It’s good to have friends who can be slightly inappropriate and obnoxious with you. Makes for some good memories.

When she isn’t snort-laughing and making fun of her lack of wine-knowledge, Lindsay Maddox contributes to My Life Monday on The Balancing Act. The rest of the week, she offers up laughable stories of raising four little ones on her blog  Silly Mom Thoughts


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