Last week was a long and somewhat stressful week, what with water droplets coming out of the ceiling and educating 5 kids, and still recovering from shingles. So when D suggested dinner out I jumped at the chance.
We did what we always do on one of our dates, we ran errands first. We went to Home Depot and picked out a new wood blind for the upstairs. I have now decided, by the way, that faux wood blinds are the best thing ever and one will soon be appearing in every window of my home…when I get the money to do so, which could take a sweet forever considering the aforementioned drippy ceiling. We then went to JoAnn’s to pick out the fabric I’m going to recover the dining room chairs with. I wanted to have D with me for this so that I did not have to hear about how unmanly the chairs were for the rest of my life. If he helps me pick it, I can remind him he okayed it. It is a beautiful system of love and understanding.
I also wanted to point out to him the sewing machine that I want for Christmas. I wanted him to look at it and touch it and understand its importance and significance in my life.
So after all this romance and shopping, we headed off to dinner. It was late, around 9 on a Sat night. (Remember we’re old. We have teenagers, 9 on a Sat night when you have to get up for Sunday school the next morning is late!) We wanted something relatively quick, so we chose the Bennigan’s next to the JoAnn’s. We walked in to the restaurant and noticed quite a bit of noise. Like loud music playing in the dinning area, competing with even louder music coming from the bar area. But the hostess’s station was right next to both, so we overlooked it. When we got seated things went downhill fast.
D ordered a beer. He’s not a huge drinker, but he likes to try different kinds of beer, he’s not a Miller Lite kinda guy. Give him something he’s never had before and he’s a happy man. So after our nice waitress Jasmine, came and yelled out the beer list, D ordered something I’ve never heard of. Jasmine came back a few minutes later and said they don’t have it after all. So D chose the other thing he’d never tried before, only to have her come back again and tell him they were out. So he had water. D was sad.
I have to tell you, at this point the noise was really starting to get to me. Rap style music was blaring from the bar area. I could not tell you the song or the singer, all I could hear was the base. Then, over my head was the speaker for the dining room music. It was pop stuff, but was almost unidentifiable over the base coming from the bar. It was so distracting, D and I did not even try to have a conversation.
To make matters worse, there was a large party in the center of the room that had apparently been the ones drinking all D’s beer because they were tanked. One man in particular was so very loud that he could be heard over the vibrating base and the annoying pop music coming from the speakers. When he started yelling obscenities, I’d had it. I just wanted to leave. Was no one else offended that he was, among other things, taking the Lords name in vain coupled with some choice curse words, repeatedly, and loudly? No one, including the manager, asked him to stop.
D and I just tried to eat fast. It was at this moment I looked around and really took in my surroundings. Most of the booths were filled; some with couples, some with teens. The couples were yelling at each other, not seeming to be a bit ruffled at all the chaos. Then there were the teens; they seemed to be energized by it.
There was a group of 4 teen girls that were sitting at a booth near us that were actually listening to an ipod and singing to the song on the ipod. How could they possibly be able to tune out all the other music (plural) and the crazy group of people yelling obscenities, and listen and sing along with a third song? How were their heads not exploding?
It was truly a frustrating and enlightening experience. I learned a few things.
1. I am old
2. Apparently the world no longer believes that background music should STAY IN THE BACKGROUND!
3. Bennigan’s does not re stock their more unusual beers very often.
4. Yelling obscenities in a public place is no longer frowned upon.
I understand why take-away stations at restaurants are doing such a brisk business.
I’d rather eat at home where there will be no loud music and no one screaming obscenities. It made the noise of 5 kids in a small home seem downright inconsequential.
And Bennigan’s? You are now dead to me.