I should know better by now

The corned beef and cabbage was utterly delectable.

The meat melted in my mouth with a salty tang.  The cabbage was crisp and delicately seasoned.  The mashed potatoes had enough garlic to give them a little zip, but not so much as to scare away any vampires.

If only I would have gotten more than a few bites in.

I should have known.

I should have known the moment I got the email from Jay, “Hey, a few of us are meeting for happy hour at the new place… want to join us for dinner with the kids after that?” … because it was a place we’d never been to before.

I should have known when we walked into the dimly lit restaurant, whose clientele was mainly businessmen and 30-something happy hour-goers… sans kids.

I should have known the minute they brought out the high chair that had not one crumb or speck of goo on it… obviously from lack of use.  Or the kids menu and crayons that had never before been used.

I should have known when I glanced at the kids menu and was blown away that someone could, in good conscience, charge $7 for a dish of mac and cheese.  Or, rather, $3 for plate of macaroni and $4 for the accompanying garnish of parsley and radish roses.  (Radish roses, really?  On a kids meal?  Who thinks up this stuff?)

I should have known when I glanced at the adult menu, and the list of brews was longer than the list of entrees.  Normally, I would have giggled with glee at this sight.  And yes, I did partake eagerly from the list.  But I should have known that it’s usually not a good indicator of a kid-friendly establishment.

I should have known that, 45 minutes after we had ordered, our food would not be there.  And that my supply of pirate booty, goldfish, and raisins would have dwindled to nothing.

The kids were restless.  They picked listlessly at their food once it came.  Intimidated by the radish roses, I suppose.  Chip writhed irritably in his high chair, and was only content while sitting on my lap.  At least for a few minutes, while I managed to shovel in a few bites of my own meal.

And when Whineapalooza 2010 started in earnest, I knew it was way past time to make our departure.  I packed up the diaper bag, left Bobo to ride home with Jay, and bolted for the door with Chip.  Who, by the way, screamed the whole way home.

The best part of the evening?  After we left, Jay had the waitress box up my meal for me.  And, as he was loading up Bobo in her carseat, placed it on top of the car.  One guess what happened next.

I may laugh about that tomorrow.  But, right now, I’m just missing my corned beef and cabbage.

We will be back.  We have to go back.  Because it was one of the best meals (er, few bites) I’ve had in ages.  My mouth is watering right now just thinking about it.

Except next time?  We’ll go without the kids. 

Because I know better now.

14 thoughts on “I should know better by now”

  1. I have a 3 year old and 1 year old. H and I have yet to enjoy a meal at a restaurant with the kids. That includes "kid friendly" places. One day.

  2. Ugh!I share your pain. I love my girl but hubby and I haven't been able to eat at the same time in a loooong while!

  3. I should have known.I should have known when I looked across the table and I only saw my wife.I should have known when I noticed EVERYTHING on the menu sounded SOOOOO good.I should have known when my wife and I were able to talk to one another without having to turn and say, "Just a second honey, mommy and daddy are talking."I should have known when the food took longer than expected to arrive.I should have known when I took that first glorious bite and decided to savor it.I should have known that my savory moment would be interrupted by a vibration in my pocket, and that I hear a desperate voice on the phone and screaming in the background.I should have known we should've just gone to Chick Fil A and let D1 run around the play area rather than pay $20 for a babysitter.

  4. Duly noted.I feel like taking kids to a nice restaurant is MAYBE almost kind of equivalent to taking my dog. But naturally, I wouldn't know.

  5. The idea of losing corned beef and cabbage kind of makes me want to cry. It's my 2nd favorite meal of the year. Actually, I should just make some this weekend.

  6. Oh No! And he totally owes it to you; I cannot BELIEVE he left it on the top of the car!Dinners like that are all stress and not the least bit enjoyable!

  7. Awww, man! I hate when I miss a good meal like that. I do hope you go back (and soon!) and enjoy a nice meal with your man. :)(OH, and BTW, Luby's never gives me heartburn. It's good food there, I tell you. I just Pepto Bismol for it's sweet, smooth taste. Sort of like a Dr. Pepper)

  8. i absolutely hate going to restaurants with S. It is never relaxing & i can't justify spending the money if we can't enjoy and savor the food. So, i hear ya.And the food on top of the car? that is TRAGIC!!!

  9. E is 5 and dining out is still a struggle. He's just so damn antsy. We certainly do appreciate it all the more when we go out to dinner by ourselves.

  10. Taking children to restaurants is so overrated. We go to Cheesecake factory once a month. It's just about all I can handle. So sad that you didn't even get your dinner. Made my mouth water too.

  11. Oh man, have I had dinners like that one! Sucks, big time, and there's just that little voice inside that says "Oh, it will be fun! New place! Happy Hour!"But yeah, we should know better. And I love me some good corned beef and cabbage….

  12. I am having a hard time getting past the corned beef and cabbage… Kids in any restaurant that doesn't have red booths and balloons at the door = TROUBLE

  13. I have never felt brave enough to take my son to a restaurant that doesn't have a ball pit.Now I know why.Thanks for the reminder and snapping my head back to reality 😉

  14. your site looks so great!! but the cabbage! oh no the cabbage! i *so* know what you mean about just KNOWING about a place!! i hope that you do get to go back, mama! xo

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