Monday, May 16, 2005


Tonight I had to run an errand with my Mom. We grabbed some dinner afterwards. We were having the same conversation we always have, when she says really loud and points:

"That waiter just stuck his nose in that salad! HE SNIFFED IT!!" Thank goodness it wasn't OUR waiter!"

Whoever she was pointing at, and whatever she saw, was behind me. I had no way of knowing if this was one of those Mom hallucination moments, or if she did witness a freaky salad fetish being indulged.

This is my Mom, who at one point during a visit last year announced to me:

"There is a private investigator watching me. Every time I go out to walk the dog, there's a strange man on the corner. He's there every time. He's a private investigator and he's watching me."

So you can see my dilemma; believe her and do what exactly about it? Or dis-believe her and bring her back to our regularly scheduled discussion.

Instead I decide to try and reassure her through Zoom logic:

Me: "Are you sure he was a waiter? Maybe he was a guy with a plate from the salad bar, and it was HIS salad? Maybe he likes to sniff his salad?"

Her: "No. No. It was a waiter. But not OUR waiter."

Me: "Maybe he tripped and it just looked like he sniffed it? But he was really catching his balance?"

Her: "No. No."

Me: "Maybe he was taking it back to the kitchen after someone complained about it?"

Her: "No. Nevermind."

At this point I don't have the heart to tell Mom that even though it wasn't our waiter she saw sniffing salad, she wasn't safe. See, at that restaurant, the waiter who takes your order isn't the one who delivers the food. It's always someone else.

Which I've often found to be rather odd. But then I don't have to serve a public that is convinced I'm putting my face in their food.

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