Saturday, August 05, 2006

Neurotic Like Me

A (mostly) accurate transcript of an
encounter at a bar on the Great Plains

7:45 p.m. -- Russell's the sports bar at the Northwest Expressway Marriott in Oklahoma City. The place smells of a wide range of heavy perfumes and men's colognes, tobacco, and stale air-conditioning. Not since 1989 have I seen this many men wearing both Dockers and tassle loafers.

Dianne: Hi, I'm Dianne and I'll be your server. What can I getcha darlin'

Me: Do you have a wine list??

Dianne: We do, but it doesn't correspond with anything we have behind the bar.

Me: Well, what reds do you have.

Dianne: Oh...let's see. A cabarnet, a pinot noir, a couple of merlots...and...uh, let's see.

Me: What's the pinot noir?

Dianne: It's a sort of fruity grape, that's been...(She stops, rolls her eyes, puts her hand on my wrist.) Oh, you must think I am so stupid. Really, I have no idea what label it is. I could go check.

Me: No, that's fine. I'll go with the pinot noir.

Dianne: You wanna start a tab. I could use your room number or a credit card.

(Three minutes later; she returns with my Wells Fargo debit card and the glass of wine.)

Dianne: So, here you go. Why don't you try it, and if it's not good I'll get you something else.

Me: (After a sip, and repressing too obvious of a grimace.) It'll do.

(Dianne returns three times to check on me during my first glass. Four times during my second. She calls me "darlin'" a total of eight times, and sweetie when I settle the tab and leave at 8:17 p.m.)


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