April 10, 2015
So, I'm sitting in a mid-class restaurant with a good friend a few days ago, enjoying some chicken wings and conversation. Out of the corner of my eye, I spy something moving under the leg of a couch in the center of the room. My attention is drawn, and I see what looks to be a mouse. But I'm sure I'm imagining things. Nope...said mouse leaves the security of the couch-fort, and does the combat crawl between the wall and the booth right in front of us. I saw it...no doubt about it...there was an unwanted foreigner in our midst. And I immediately realized that I could quite possibly be enjoying the privilege of chowing down on mouse droppings, no extra charge, at that very moment.
Now, I must admit, I wasn't really thinking mouse droppings at that point. The word that was running through my mind and forming on my lips actually rhymes with curds...or bits.....I think those words are far more descriptive and fitting. But I'm not going to use either of those here...so get curds or bits out of your mind....we'll stick with droppings.
I told my buddy what I had just seen (it happened behind him) and then promptly got the attention of our waitress. I discreetly told her about the mouse, and where she could find it (I had it under constant surveillance by this point). Her reply? "oh, I'm glad I didn't see that". And then she just walked away. No, "I'll get someone right on that....sorry you had to see that sir....we'll be sure to get that little critter caught right away...can I get you some extra celery?". (Don't mice really like celery?? Don't they pretty much like ANYTHING edible?) Nope...she didn't make any other comment or effort to allay my concerns...she just walked away.
I watched with interest as she began talking to another server. She was obviously recounting my tale of the mouse intruder. I could tell by the multiple SHIVERS and the look of relief on her face. Server #2 took a few glances in the general direction of the rodent's lair, and then they BOTH walked away. Apparently they either both didn't care, or figured it was somebody else's problem....which at this point, I considered MY problem. They didn't do anything. We stayed there for a couple more minutes, watching to see if anyone would come over to check it out more conscientiously. Nope. No one seemed interested. (I did notice during this time, during a close inspection of a few of my remaining wings, that they closely resemble the size and shape of the rodent in question...but I'm sure this is just a coincidence).
We had lost interest in our food by this time. The thought of Curds and whey was hard enough for me to stomach when I was a kid. Anything rhyming with curds is far beyond my realm of graciousness as an adult. So we left, leaving some uneaten food on the table. Maybe my new friend, which I had now named "mickey" (he was too big to be "minnie"), would appreciate our gesture.
On our way out, we took one last opportunity to mention, DISCREETLY, that there was a mouse between the wall and the corner booth. "Yeah, your server told me. We'll get right on that". He said it with such sincerity (sarcasm dripping here like an ice cream cone on the 4th of July) that I just KNEW he was going to take care of it. I think it might have been his practiced eye roll that convinced me. It was as if he thought I might be scared of the mouse. I wasn't scared of the mouse....I was mad because I quite possibly had just eaten mouse DROPPINGS (curds). I left before enlightening him any further.
That was two days ago, and here I am still thinking about it. Should I call the manager? It's certainly not because I want free food....I will have to be VERY hungry before I go into that establishment for another order of wings with mouse dropping sauce again. No, I just believe that I would want to know if I were the manager. And then, what if the manager shows the same apparent lack of concern as his wait staff? Should I call the health department? There's obviously an issue there. One that needs to be corrected.
I'm not a problem child. I rarely complain about food or service. But this one has my moral responsibility barometer cresting at hurricane pressure level. I'm not listing the name of the franchise here, as I don't want to cause anyone harm. But I am wondering, what should I do?
What would you do? Besides joining me in not choosing curds....or bits....no whey....at least on purpose.