Bubble and Squeak is a Funny not Slutty food column by humorist Elizabeth Bastos.
I am afflicted by what I call “ordering remorse.” It’s buyers remorse, but in a restaurant, with the food on my plate looking meh and he food on your plate looking fabulous. I get jealous. How did you know to order the lamb au jus with petit pois coulis? I didn’t understand a single word in the sentence our waiter used to describe it, except I believe petit pois means pea, in French, and “jus” sounds like juice, but it could be justice.
I had hope for my lardoons of rock hen, though what is a lardoon, exactly? It sounds like something a pirate might say or an 18th century Englishwoman’s undergarment. Are my lardoons showing? Great heavens, they are, how embarrassing. When I share this with you, you don’t smile. Instead, you educate me seriously about lardoons, reading the Wikipedia entry to me from your iPhone sotto voce so none of the other diners can hear you: it’s a strip of salt pork.
I ask for a bite of your lamb. Wow! Not only does what you ordered look better — it tastes better than what I ordered. I’m beginning to think “lardoons” is a fancy restaurant way of charging $25 for chicken nuggets. Rock hen tastes like chicken; did you know this? You probably did, you’re better than me. You have better taste than me, and more skill in ordering at restaurants. I’m beginning to think — you know what I’m beginning to think: you don’t like me anymore.
When the waiter comes to take our dessert order, you say to him, knowingly: “I’ll have the pear soufflé with brandied flan; she’ll probably order something adolescent, like ice cream.” It is adolescent that what caught my eye was the banana split?
For a long time now I’ve noticed that after sex, when I open a bag of Doritos or Skittles, you move away from me. Do you hate me because I like a rainbow of fruit flavors? Well, then I hate you because you like cheeses that you have to give up your citizenship to pronounce. Like Gruyere. Why don’t you move to France since their plein air markets are all you talk about?
“Waiter!” I call, motioning him over to our table and ignoring your plea to please call him garcon. I have plans. I call out so everyone can hear me, “I changed my mind, I’ll have that banana split to go.” You’re thinking well, at least she didn’t say doggy bag. But I do one better, “Waiter,” I say, “would you separate the toppings into these Tupperware containers for leftovers? That way you don’t have to make me one of those faux fancy aluminum foil swans.”
FnS Food Columnist Elizabeth Bastos is a SAHM of two under five. She used to work in corporate and foundation relations, and before that, as a writer for the Museum of Science, Boston. Now she moonlights, writing, and in her free time, she cooks complicated French pastries to tempt her children into doing what she asks. http://www.goodybastos.blogspot.com/