Open Thread Posted by Oaktown Girl, 15 Jun 2007 03:54 pm
By Kiera PSI
Message form the Minister of Justice:
This Open Thread contains a bonus two-fer question:
1. What was your most embarrassing food moment? It can be a restaurant fiasco, as the chef or a dinner guest, dysfunctional family Thanksgiving nightmares, whatever.
2. What was the most embarrassing and/or humiliating public thing a parent (or any adult) ever inflicted upon your teenage or pre-teen self? And looking back at it now as an adult, does it still seem all that bad?
WAAGNFNP overachiever Kiera gives us both in one tale of mother-inflicted terror. All we need to know now is, does it still seem that awful? (I’m guessing “yes”).
Me: a twelve year-old girl on a cruise ship with her parents. A budding teen-to-be, full of hormonal angst, ripe for easy embarrassment. Also at the dinner table: several couples, and a nineteen year-old traveling on his own (the enticing older man!).
Picture the scene…You are expecting gourmet cuisine …but…this is a ship with English Registry. Have you ever eaten in England ? If you’re not into fish and chips, you’re out of luck (okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating, but not by much). Food preparation, cooking and serving styles are not what the typical American expects. And they don’t really explain the differences in their menu. After all, they’re the Empire, the bastion of the civilized world (unless you’re French), so of course everyone will know and appreciate how they do things.
The menu that day featured a choice of “Broiled Rainbow Trout” or “Prime Rib with Yorkshire Pudding”. Almost everyone at the table ordered the beef, with the notable exception of…My Mother. My Mother was the ultimate pragmatist. Nothing phased her…or so we thought. When the entrées were delivered, Lions and Tigers and FISH, Oh My! While the rest of the table denizens took up our forks and steak knives, My Mother stared silently down at her plate. This was no broiled filet of trout, this was a full-on fish, prepared the way “pan fried” trout is served in the States, complete with head, tail, and shiny rainbow scales. Its little dead eye staring up at her accusingly.
I never would have expected this to bother My Mother. But there she sat. She stared, she pointed, she started to sniffle. A few seconds later both our waiter and the maître de (who resembled Captain Bligh) realized something was wrong, and came running. My Mother tried to explain that she couldn’t eat the fish because “it’s looking at me”, so the maître de offered to “fillet” (pronounced like FILL-it) it for her. My Mother looked down at the fish again, looked back up at Captain Bligh, and quavered, “No, I just couldn’t…it’s a friend!”
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