Friday, December 30, 2005

Good cook, bad cook

We are in a crowded riverside diner, one with a reputation for mediocre food and legendary drinking. We are weary from holiday shopping and visiting. Traffic has been impossible. This is not our first choice for lunch, but we are here, there was a good parking space and we are all ravenous.

"So," I say to the greasy waiter, "how's the food here?"

"That depends," he says. "If you get the good cook, it's pretty good."

"Yeah?" I say.

"And if you get the bad cook," he says with a lopsided toothy grin, "it's not so good."

There are a dozen questions I want to ask regarding the Good Cook and the Bad Cook. Is it a matter of their respective dispositions? Does Good wear a white hat? Does Bad don a black cloak? Does he have a hook instead of a right hand? A peg leg? Do the teeth of Good sparkle beneath the orange heat lamps? Does he become powerless when faced with Kryptonite?

Fortunately for everyone involved, I ask none of these things and say simply, "That's fair enough. I'll take my chances with the steak sandwich." My betrothed orders a ham omelet, my kid a grilled cheese sandwich.

Of course, I am unable to leave the Good Cook Bad Cook topic completely alone. "If we get the good cook," I say, handing the waiter my menu, "tell him that we've heard he's a good cook, that his reputation proceeds him. Tell him we're honored to have him preparing our meal."

"And what if you get the bad cook?" asks the waiter, a challenge.

"Tell him the same thing."

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Your reputation proceeds you, the writing in your book and blog are excellant and it is a pleasure to read your wit and wisdom.

Thank you!

FLAMINGO1 said...

Wise response as you deftly avoided the grilled loogie sandwich!

Lesley said...

so...which cook did you get?

zanytwo said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Erin O'Brien said...

Hey everyone.

I deleted the above post from zanytwo only because it contained spoiler info on my book. And I'd like all my readers to discover the end on their own. Here is the text of zanytwo's post with the spoiler info deleted:

"I can't believe E had the HAM omelet after the Ham-a-thon.

I too am obsessed, but it's still in my head and not on paper. I wonder, and wonder still.

I LOVED Harvey & Eck"

Thanks to zanytwo and (as always) to all of you for your comments and support.

And lesley, the meal was completely unremarkable.

zanytwo said...

why was comment deleted?

Erin O'Brien said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Phoenix said...

Very smart move, as you don't want any "mystery sauce" on your food.

zanytwo said...

Ahhh, an idiot moment. Should have edited my comments......

my humblest apologies....

nicole said...

Veddy veddy crafty, Erin!

Now I'm DYING to know how your food turned out...!!!!

PDD said...

A good cook will always take you to the back and show you how truly good he/she is. Also, a good cook never makes grilled cheese sandwiches.

A bad cook will always grill a grilled cheese sandwich in the microwave and the cheese will always be processed.

If a good cook never makes grilled cheese sandwiches and a bad cook will only do so provided the cheese is processed and prepared in the microwave, have we ever had grilled cheese sandwiches??

DadGuy said...

Hey! Some consider me a good cook and I have been well known at times for my grilled cheese sandwiches!

But then I don't, and haven't ever, cook in a resturaunt. =)

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