The following is a dialogue from dinner last night with the oppositional waiter.
Can I get you something to drink?
Yes, two Mojitos, please.
A Mojito for the gentleman?
Yes. Two Mojitos, please.
You both want a Mojito.
We have a very nice strawberry drink…a strawberry basil lemonade – very nice for the lady.
Well… (Kay is hesitant…)
Or maybe the Hibiscus…very nice: Absolut Pear, St. Germain, and Lunetta sparkling wine with a sugared hibiscus flower. I think you’ll really like it. It’s very nice…
No… I don’t think so. I’ll have the Mojito.
(Waiter stares and frowns at “the Lady”)
And we’d like the spicy shrimp appetizer and the calamari.
Sure. One spicy-shrimp. Good choice. Do you like Sushi?
May I suggest the crunchy crab roll? I think you’ll really like it. It’s one of my favorites.
Hmmm… Is it soft-shell crab?
Yes. It’s really good. Very nice.
Okay. Okay with you, honey?
One spicy shrimp and the crunchy crab roll.
Very good, and I’ll leave you with the menus.
(Waiter departs. Kay and I – each incredulous – turn to each other with wide-eyed smiles.)
What just happened? Who is this guy?
He’s oppositional defiant (Kay works in the mental health field, she knows about Oppositional Defiant Disorder [ODD] where I say it’s green, he says it’s red.). Can you believe that? Everything we said we wanted, he opposed. It was weird. Have you ever seen anything like that?
What was even weirder is that we did what he said! How crazy is that! Reminds me of the old Steve Martin waiter routine, except that this guy’s on top of it. He got us to change our order!
Why did we do that? At least I got my Mojito. I didn’t want something with strawberries.
And what can I get you for an entrée?
We’ll have the Macadamia chicken to share.
(Waiter makes a face.)
And we’d like the garlic mashed potatoes.
The best thing on the menu – my favorite – is the sea bass. Really special.
(Kay and I hesitate … look at each other)
I don’t know. Is it Chilean Sea Bass? There’s a lot of bad press about Chilean sea bass and mercury.
Hmmm. I don’t know. I can find out if you really want to know. But there are 13 different kinds of sea bass. (Kay, who’s not hard of hearing, tells me later that he had told us that this is a very rare endangered sea bass! If I’d have know that…)
What’s it come with?
A very nice rice pilaf. But if you like, I can substitute the garlic mashed potatoes. This is very special. My favorite.
Okay. We’ll go with the sea bass.
Very good choice. You’ll really like it.
(ODD Waiter leaves. We’re alone again.)
Did you really want the sea bass?
No, I wanted the Macadamia Chicken.
Why did we do that?
I don’t know. He’s a terrorist!
I can’t believe it. We did whatever he said. What’s wrong with us?
It’s like he’s the ODD Waiter – the ODD junior-high waiter. And we were the parents who buckled ‘cause we didn’t want to make him mad. We’re afraid of the junior high terrorist.
(The sea bass arrives….. With rice pilaf. No garlic mashed potatoes. The rice pilaf is fabulous. So was the sea bass.)
We say nothing.