Food and Eating


with the surly people behind the counter at my local convenience stores? i’m accustomed to uppity waitstaff, i mean, i am from here. but this phenomenon is new. i am used to my clerk at the plaid being:

  1. drunk, intoxicated, or suffering the long-term effects of previous drunkenness/intoxication
  2. mentally challenged
  3. toothless
  4. persistently curious about my personal life/plans for the evening
  5. some combination of the above

what i am NOT used to is the not-so-subtly snide mien the handful of cashiers i have encountered lately have adopted.

few weeks back friends lyza, emma, & i wandered over to plaid to obtain milk duds for our popcorn. we were enjoying the fine pre-summer evening with a few cocktails, and we had all confirmed via emma’s snazzy personal breathalyzer unit that none of us should attempt to captain a vehicle of any kind, but we were merely enjoying our time together and the prospect of salty carmely chocolatey popcorny goodness. as we approached the counter, the fellow behind it got this look on his face like he thought our behavior could be favorably compared to dental work sans anesthesia. then, when i attempted to engage him in a little friendly banter to reassure him we were harmless, well…

“can i have one of those scratch its? (aside to e&l) these are really fun. (back to cashier) a friend of mine showed me how to do them. we all take turns. (smile)”

“that’s a riveting story”

WTF?

like, i wasn’t really looking for approval from this guy, but why the snark? we weren’t being unduly rowdy, we were making a sizable purchase, and, if i do say so myself, we are a group of lookers. what the hell?

then today, i go into the 7-11 so i can grab something for lunch. i decide on a clif bar, some trail mix, and a rockstar. my digestions have been a little off kilter of late so i wanted something relatively low key, but cheap and fast. i bring my whatnot to the counter and this guy gives me this look and says

“you know, there’s no FOOD in your food.”

i’m a little taken aback here so i don’t reply immediately. Then:

“well it suits me.”

“why don’t you go get yourself some crackers, or an orange. a sandwich for chrissakes.”

(pause to think of retort, think of one, begin to walk away)

“i will if you promise to shove them up your ass.”

no one saw fit to critique my purchases at freddy’s.

hodie and i went to Powell’s yesterday so she could obtain the spoils of blackmail. i owed her one, and she’s become extremely fond of these weird little Japanese dolls that have completely interchangeable parts. head, trunk, and legs can all be swapped out for one another…

whatever.

i was starving. we were in close proximity to many fine eateries, but i wanted something easy, kid-friendly, and comparatively low-cost. i wanted to go get beer cheese soup @ Henry’s but wasn’t sure i could take her into the bar and didn’t want to take her into the dining room. so.

the deschutes opened recently enough i hadn’t tried it yet (though my experiences in Bend were pretty uninspiring) and thought it should fit the bill nicely.

wandered over and saw Steve Novick inside. so, that was cool… we were seated and my immediate impression was lack of design vision married to noise. it was loud in there. much louder than one might expect for a monday afternoon. it wasn’t all that crowded, so i can only assume it was the “this used to be a repair shop” acoustics that were to blame. also, plaid industrial carpet? never a good call.

when i got a look at the menu it seemed like pretty typical pub grub, which was what i was after, but definitely upmarket in terms of price. not totally thrilled my reuben was going to cost me $11.95 i was downright flummoxed to see that the kids menu listed grilled salmon as one of its offerings. grilled salmon? seriously? if it cannot be formed into a patty or tot, my child is not interested. and i realize this is not true of all children, that some children are slightly more sophisticated in terms of their tastes, but i don’t think i have EVER met a kid who lwould look at their parents and say “instead of grilled cheese, can i have grilled salmon?”

anyway, we ordered. my sandwich was not-even-middling fair. the bread was awful (and NOT rye) and the dearth of dressing was criminal, to my mind. hodie’s burger was fine, according to her, but it was GARGANTUAN. there was no chance in hell she was going to be able to eat it all. the hand cut fries were passable, the honey mustard i sopped up with them was downright tasty. the “special rose festival pink lady” brew was less than thrilling, but potable.

this cost me about $30 all told. which is a lot for eating with the child. usually its closer to $20 for this type of meal in most eateries. i realize being in the pearl brings with it a premium, but usually that premium is married with a more satisfying experience all around.

next time i’ll just drag her to Henry’s and be done with it….

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