Last night, my buddy Matt,who was in town for Guard drill, and I decided we were in the mood for a steak. He suggested a steakhouse in a hotel North Little Rock that he liked. Although I had never eaten there, it certainly had the reputation for being a great place to eat and so I was eager to give it a try.
We got there about 6:45. The place was about half-full and we were seated immediately. We sat there admiring the surroundings and looked over the menus the seating hostess had left for us. I was anticipating the first hit of an icy cold martini, which is the only proper and Christian preamble to a steak dinner.
And I would have ordered one to if anyone had bothered to come around. After about 10 minutes of being completely ignored, Matt stopped the water server to tell him, "We would really like to order some food." He mumbled something about finding our waitress. He went and said something to the seating hostess who immediately went running off into the kitchen. After 5 more minutes, we noticed that the table that came in after us was giving their drink orders to a live body. That was it. We got up and left.
Matt and I are hardly tough customers. We are not known for public displays of queeniness. Or private ones either for that matter. I am known for having a pretty long fuse, at least when I am not on a golf course. Matt's is even longer. I have never walked out of a restaurant before in my life that I can recall. I've been thrown out of a couple but that doesn't count.
But this was ridiculous. Here were a couple of guys batching it out on the town, looking to spend some money, eat some steak, have a few drinks while solving the world's problems. And we get roundly ignored. That ain't no way to build a customer base by word of mouth.
We decided to go to a steak and seafood place down by the river. We figured we might have to wait for a table but at least we knew we could get a drink and there would be women to look at. We must have hit it about right because we were seated immediately and soon I was enjoying an icy cold martini, which is the only proper and Christian preamble to a steak dinner. Matt got a glass of wine, and immediately the simmering down process began. The talk turned to more important matters like SEC football and politics. Which was the game plan for a guy's night out on the town.
Look. It doesn't take much to get my business. Unlike some of my more, shall we say, critical friends, I do not consider myself much of a gourmand. I am perfectly content to take my meals at any of the establishments, modest or swanky, that are open for business here in the People's Republic of Hillcrest. But I will be damned if I am going to drive across town to be completely ignored when there are folks within a 3 wood from my house who welcome my business.
End of rant.