My mom is in town. She flew out on Wednesday for the sole purpose of getting as much face time with her granddaughter as possible. Given this, we were afforded a night out.
Matt and I went to my new favorite restaurant, the Brick Ridge Inn. This place is fabulous. Understated elegance, the rustic charm of an old school house now surrounded by beds of wildflowers and the herbs used in the kitchen, all the produce they serve comes from local farmers markets, affordable wine, and courses that make you want to lick the plate. I am still full the next morning.
But that is not what this story is about.
As my senior year progressed and my University had be selected my mom put down an ultimatum. I was not going to be allowed to go unless I chose a major. So I chose. Speech Communications with a specialization in Public Relations. You want to know how I settled on this? General Hospital. There was a character in the soap opera who career was ‘public relations’. I had no idea what that meant, but it looked glamorous, you know being a soap and all. Mom apparently never made the connection between my choice and the TV show, so off I went.
The major consisted of a lot of public speaking, interpersonal relations and journalism classes. It was interesting, but easy. I zipped through at a pace to allow graduation in 3 years. I wasn’t going to let that happen, there were still a lot more parties to go to. So I added a second major of Political Science. I loved it. It was pre-law and American government courses galore. Honestly, this time I took the classes as a conversation building block. I had always doted on my Great Uncle Jim and I thought the more I knew about government, the better perspective I would have on our conversations. He died just before I graduated college, but I know he was pleased with me. The Poly Sci classes wound up serving me well in the end, as my career was made possible by those American government classes.
One of the big things I learned during that last year of college though that was I don’t like talking politics. It is so emotional. Some people thrive on that raw nerve, heart on a platter conversation. I avoid it. I am a big believer that unless you ABSOLUTELY know (and are sensitive to) the views of your companion, religion and politics are not for polite company. Thank you Miss. Manners.
So moments after Matt and I placed our order, a table of 6 was seated next to us. Despite the stomach turning wafts of old lady perfume, I paid no attention to the table of late 50/early 60-somethings.
Then they started in on Politics.
At first it was humorously (from our prospective) boastful. Some guy was claiming to be 3 times removed from the Kennedy family. “I went to a Kennedy event and Eunice was seating at the next table. The wait staff came around taking orders and I said, ‘I have Kennedy blood damnit and I want a lobster!’ – Well, OK, I didn’t quite say it like that, but you get the picture.” They discussed Teddy’s passing and Chappaquiddick and all the great things he did while in Congress.
But then, they moved onto September 11th. I couldn’t believe it. They moved onto such a sensitive topic with the same jovial tone. The same hardy attitude while telling there own ‘When I Heard the News’ stories. It was horrible.
To quash the scene we wanted to make, we started loudly discussing all the times we were seating next to obnoxious people in restaurants. The ocean front Bahamas restaurant when we were seating next to a NYC couple exchanging rattlesnake gifts for their anniversary; the lady who valued her $40 buffet admission more than the modesty (and sanitation) of not having menstrual fluid soak though the back of her dress; the old lady in Vegas the ate ¾ of her dinner and then complained about it…..
This was just a different kind of tacky. So distasteful.