Sunday, August 29, 2010

O Canada

This morning after church, we somehow ended up in a caravan of several cars headed for Eggstyle, a new restaurant in Oldsmar that serves, well, eggs . . . and things made of eggs like waffles, crepes and pancakes. Filled with faith that God would not let all 17 of us die of salmonella poisoning at once (we had just been to church, after all), we marched in there with 8 children and 9 adults.

Immediately upon opening up the menu we noticed a couple of odd things . . . first, Shelya pointed out to us that there were no pancakes on the kids' menu. Or waffles. Only french toast, eggs, and crepes. I don't know about your kids, but when eating at a restaurant that serves breakfast, my kids go for the pancakes, especially if they are shaped like Mickey Mouse. Also, the prices seemed a little high to me. Though, I did not realize until after ordering my $3.25 cafe au lait that plain coffee or tea comes with the meal at no extra charge. But when you step outside the ordering box and order orange juice, for example, it'll cost you $4.00 a glass.

And when we ordered drinks, the kids' drinks came in short bar glasses with no lids. It was a good thing they neglected to even bring half of the kids' drinks out at all, because with no lids, there was huge potential for spillage. It could have been a disaster. At one point, Flamingo Joe was siphoning chocolate milk with a straw out of the bar glasses and into empty creamer containers for the kids to drink -- if the dang cups had lids, Flamingo Joe would not be tempted to misbehave in this way.

There were 5 moms of young children at our table and when we weren't grabbing tipping glasses out of our kids' hands, we were puzzling over Eggstyle's strange approach to family dining. I've been in bar and grill type places that didn't really have kids' cups, but the wait staff would usually bring a "to go" styrofoam cup with lid and straw to the table for the kids. After we'd finished eating, Shelya hopped up and found the manager and started making conversation. She asked why the kids' drinks didn't have lids and the answer was: "We're a Canadian chain of restaurants, and in Canada, they don't have kids' cups in restaurants." The manager's answer certainly begs an obvious question . . . why? Why aren't there kids' cups in Canadian restaurants? Are kids not allowed in Canadian restaurants? Are Canadian children born with much better manual dexerity and therefore never spill? Are Canadian parents so germaphobic that they always bring their kids' cups from home, so the restaurants don't bother providing them?

I don't understand.

Regardless, our children were really pretty well-behaved at the restaurant until the very end when we were waiting for our checks and they started getting restless. I told Joe I'd take the kids outside while he paid the check. Although I really meant my two kids, I somehow ended up outside with five kids because I'm like the Pied Piper that way and they all started following me -- which was fine, because freeze tag is always more fun with six people. So the kids and I played for about 5 minutes in a small courtyard type area right outside the front door of the restaurant until the rest of our party started trickling out.

When Brian and Shelya came out, they corralled their kids and I was saying something to little Kate, and not watching the others, when Brian spoke up from behind me, "Hey -- what's your kid doing?" I looked over to where Mace was standing absolutely still on the pavement by the bushes, but in clear view of the restaurant, with his pants down around his ankles, and saw a stream of pee flowing (and flowing, and flowing) into the bushes. I ran over and stood between him and the restaurant, hoping that no one actually saw him except for the three or four people who happened to be walking past him and into the restaurant at the time. When he was finished (there was no point in stopping him -- he's only three, it's not like he can be commanded to stop mid-stream) I yanked his pants up and tried to explain why our yard is different from right outside a restaurant. I could tell by the blank look on his face that he was not grasping the concept. Flamingo Joe pulled up in the car at about that time and I yelled, "YOUR son just dropped his pants and peed right there by the bushes!!" Joe said, "Well it's not my fault, I told him he could only do that when he was outside the city limits!"

I bet those well-behaved, non-spilling Canadian children never pee in front of restaurants.

1 comment:

  1. Hahaha.
    1 - at least Mace didn't wet his pants

    2 - having lived in Canada for the first 12 years of my life I can say with certainty that the above mentioned manager is full of bull. Canadiens use cups with lids unless you're in a fancy restaurant.


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