It’s probably us. We seem to bring out the stories in the most harmless of activities. Not long ago, Both of We and Child of He were out to a diner for a Sunday breakfast. A real, honest to gosh diner. The kind where the food is going to be fabulous if you order nothing more than tea and toast. Well, let us tell you about this toast.
We have to begin at the beginning as we were seated at a table and asked the ritualistic “what would you like to drink?” Coffee and tea and ice water for three please. And yes, we’ll need some time to peruse the menu. It wasn’t that it was too big like some, but it took a little reading because it had things we aren’t used to in the twenty-first century. Things like sausage gravy and other offerings whose calorie counts were in triple digits. Among the choices were several four egg omelets.
After a couple of false starts of “are you ready?” by Waitress #1 we somehow were advanced to Waiter #2. A pleasant enough young man at home from college for the summer. On his first trip we figured we’re ready enough if those who know what they want order first and slowly and let those still deciding decide for a few more moments. He of We went first with a decisive blow to the cholesterol watchers, the aforementioned sausage gravy with biscuits plus two eggs and a side of hash browns. Two or three swipes with the pen and young Waiter had the order. Then Child of He is up. Both of We have seen her eat the equivalent of a lunch intended for a full firehouse but even Child draws the line at four eggs. That’s nearly a week’s work of one chicken for just one meal. “Can I have a smaller omelet?” was the innocent enough question. “Of course, here it is on the smaller plates menu,” pointed out the Boy Waiter. And there it was, a two egg cheese omelet. But, Child didn’t want just cheese. “Instead of just cheese can I have a veggie please,” and Young Waiter Man made a few more marks with his pen and we moved on to She of We. A straightforward eggs, toast, hash brown, pancake combination order.
We’re just about through the ordering phase of our breakfast when the waiter asked the question that in our combined whole lot of years we’ve never heard before. “How would you like your toast?” She of We was so taken aback that even she, the unflappable She of We, the unquestionable clearest of all clear order givers, was left speechless. And so, he actually repeated, “How would you like your toast?” He of We was just about ready to answer over-easy when She of We and Waiter of Three finally got their telepathy going and She of We suggested “umm, do you mean what kind of toast?”
To make a long story short, and after some light hearted kidding of Young Waiter, we settled in and waited for our meals to be prepared and presented. And not much later an entourage marched down the aisle with several plates that could only be ours. And as they were all settled in front of us, having finally gotten over “How would you like your toast?” the last dish to be dropped was the omelet for Child of He. And when it hit the table we all were again rendered as thoroughly speechless as She of We was with the now infamous toast question. For there, before Child of He sat a plate with a two egg, cheese omelet, her selection of toast, and nuzzled between them, a serving of . . . corn. Child of He was the first to find her voice. “Corn?” “Yes,” young Waiter Man said,” that’s your cheese omelet with a veggie.” Clearly, the vegetable of the day was . . . corn.
Eventually all was sorted out. Child of He got her veggie omelet. She of We enjoyed her toast. He of We got to hear his arteries clog. And a fine meal was had by all.
So our advice to you, if you should ever be questioned with “How would you like your toast?” is to answer poached and then mentally review the rest of the order for verbal land mines.
Now, that’s what we think. Really. How ‘bout you?