Posted: November 1, 2011 in Uncategorized

It was a hot Indian Summer day. I had worked in the garage all day moving arcane objects from here to there. My t-shirt was soaking with sweat, my head ached and at the end of the day all I could think about was the need for relief. Of course, in my rugged, man-like state of mind the only antidote I could thin of for my agony a cold beer or two, with a big hunk of meat on the side in an eloquent restaurant where a beautiful waitress would take care of my every need. I ran in to tell my wife I was taking HER out to dinner but I needed to leave immediately, since my need for a cold beer had been elevated to a matter of life or death.

My wife took one look at me and agreed I could have a beer, but added that she would not be caught dead in a place where we would run into anyone we knew.  We had to find a spot that would accommodate my dirt-drenched demeanor, a place we’ve never to before and still served cold beer, good food and excellent service.

We drove thousands of miles in every direction until we landed in the perfect out of the way place … Buffalo Wings. My son told me about it. It was were he went to enjoy himself, watch the game and munch on some buffalo wings. Sounded good to me, although my wife reminded me that my son was a starving University student that would eat out of a trash can if it saved a few bucks. Nah, not my kid. I raised him in the high standards of suburban life and knew that if he found Buffalo Wings suitable I would too.

My wife told me I would like the place. It would be too grungy, the food bad and I would get upset and leave disgruntled. She suggested going to Safeway, pick up a six pack of beer and a steak. No way. I wanted to explore, drench myself in an adventure with the younger generation of life. I may be old, but my heart and soul still resonated vibrant youth.

I dusted myself off, and walked into a new, young and exciting environment. As I looked around I found myself in a bar that catered to young, frisky types. There were  huge TV screens scattered on every wall. I noticed I was one of the better-dressed patrons in the crowd. My wife smiled her approval. We found a seat in the middle of the bar. I lifted my finger and ordered two beers. I drank mine with fiendish relish.

I looked at the menu: Buffalo Wings, burgers or ribs. Nothing exciting, so I ordered a second beer. Eventually, I ordered some Buffalo Wings without the sauce and another beer. The New York Yankees were in the play-offs on the two huge flat screens over the bar. I sat mesmerized by the game, even though baseball and I parted company about four decades ago. One more beer ordered and no food in sight. I ordered another beer and still no food in sight. An hour goes by. I have two more beers but still there is no food in sight. I ask the bartender about the food.

“It’s on its way,” he muttered.

He lied. It took another 20 minutes until the food came.

Then without fanfare, the bartender placed a paper plate in front of me with what looked like dried leather lumps of debris. I looked up at the bartender in disgust. I assumed he would sense my displeasure, send for a fresh batch of Buffalo Wings and say “No charge. We’re sorry that we inconvenienced you. In fact, let me pick up your whole tab and buy you another beer.”

Instead he said, “You want ketchup with that?”

I leaned over to my wife and said, “Man, this food is terrible. I can’t eat this stuff.”

“I told you the food was bad here,” whispered my wife back into my ear.

I was angry. I wanted revenge. I needed a plan, since no one seemed to notice my discontent. Everyone was having fun. Evidently,  low standards of service was the usual fare at the Buffalo Wings and no one cared. Then, all of a sudden,  I turned around and noticed that the crowd was growing. Then the TV screens splashed: NEXT …  The San Francisco Giants.

Aha! They’re here to see the San Francisco Giants. My mind began whirring in overdrive. Visions of Genghis Khan ravaging poor Roman villages loomed in my head. Then my plan of revenge became crystalline clear.

I slowly turn to my wife and tell her, “I’ll show this guy how I feel about bad service and bad food. I’m going to sit here for the Giants game and not give up my seats.”

My wife glares at me. “You know each beer you’re drinking costs $5. You’re going to drink a $100 worth of beer and then you know what’s going to happen don’t you?”

“Bartender, another beer please,” I said.

The first salvo in my devious game plan was set in motion. I watched the game with fake elevated interest. I looked around at the cheering crowd, and snickered at those over my shoulder trying to order their drinks, but I was in their way.

“Another beer please,” I bellowed to the bartender. “I’ll show these guys who is boss around here.”

I continued with my plan, drinking beer after beer, hugging my front row seat and not caring a hoot about the game. I didn’t notice my words slurring together like a melting Frosty ice cream cone on a hot summer day. I drank one more beer. Then suddenly, I began to feel like a gladiator, a superhero, a mountain of strength. I wanted to fight someone, anyone, all the cool guys in the bar. I would have done it too, except I had trouble standing up.

I changed my plan. I ordered another beer and decided I would pick up a hot chick. There were plenty in the room and with my bravado and mature countenance I could have the pick of the litter. I held my breath, pulled in my gut, and began to scan the room for lucky babe who would win my body, fall head over heels for me and then want to leave immediately to go back to her place and ….

Wait, my vision was going haywire. My tongue was not enunciating properly. I couldn’t stand in one place without losing my balance. I thought for a moment, but my thoughts weren’t connecting properly. I looked at my wife in desperation. She was getting pissed at me but I knew I couldn’t give in. Then I notice a beautiful tall blonde Amazon woman standing about four feet to my my left. I knew that if I could only go over and talk to her, show her that I was vulnerable that she would feel pity, want to take care of me and nurse me back to health.

My wife belted me in the arm and told me to get my act together. I ordered another beer, believing that I only needed some time to get my plan back on track.

“Let’s go,” my wife was pulling my arm in the direction of the door.

I pulled my arm back. I wanted to stay for the 3rd inning. No, I wanted to stay for the whole game. I wanted those seats because they didn’t serve me my food on time. I’ll show them. I’ll sit there and keep paying $5 a bottle for beer and drink all night to show them how rudely they treated me.

“We’re going home right now, and don’t make me carry you out on my back,” my wife was whispering under her clenched teeth.

I woke up around 1:00 in the morning with my hat still on, my shirt unbuttoned, one shoe off and one shoe on. My head was killing me, I smelled to high heaven and I needed to pee but couldn’t stand up. It was a terrible night.

When I came down in the morning, my wife looked at me as if nothing happened. Evidently, she had been through this with me before. I drank my coffee through a web-drenched thicket covering my tongue.

Sure, it was a rough morning. In fact, it was a rough two or three days.  My plan of revenge may have been derailed by Acts of God. It didn’t matter to me. I showed them who was the boss.


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