Monday, January 29, 2007

The Birthday Flan

I recently received one of those email forwards that asks
you several questions in an attempt to help the recipient/s get to “know” you
better. Bored, I decided to fill it
out. One of the questions was, “what
are your pet peeves?” Hmmm… I thought
about it for a minute expecting to be flooded with answers and none came to
me. I
think I ended up writing “hypocrites” or some other lame answer.

Pet peeves are interesting things. They linger in the back of my mind, only rearing their ugly head
when faced with a pertinent situation. I have TONS of them but I seem to only have access to their existence
when faced with an actual peeve. This
weekend, for example, I met some friends for dinner at a local steak
house. We were enjoying our meal and
the fact that, for once, we thought we could engage
in an adult conversation without interruption because our children were not with us. We were wrong.  We did have interruptions: three of them, all in the form of a
high volume, clapping filled serenade of dinner guests who claimed to be
celebrating their birthdays. The second
the 19-year-old waiter asked for everyone’s attention, the hairs on the back of
my neck stood up and I could feel my blood pressure rising. Then, the light bulb went off. Random, loud birthday celebrations in
restaurants are a pet peeve of mine, a big one.

The waiter said something like, “Ladies and gentlemen,
tonight is Cindy’s birthday. She’s
turning 28. Let’s give her a hand and a
yee-haw.” Everyone around us clapped
and yee-hawed. My friends and I did
nothing. We crossed our arms and rolled
our eyes and expressed our disdain in a most passive aggressive way. Why do I care that it is Cindy’s
birthday? I don’t even believe that it
is Cindy’s birthday. Her friends may
have gotten together and decided that it would be hilarious to tell the staff
at the restaurant that it was Cindy’s birthday tonight. What a good laugh that would be when Cindy
is thrust into the spotlight. Hardy har
har. I can remember, fifteen or twenty
years ago, when it was a novelty to get a birthday serenade. You’d go into a Mexican restaurant; they’d
put a sombrero on your head, snap your picture, and bring you out a birthday
flan. That was it. It was cute and funny. Those days are gone. Now every restaurant has some clever way to
celebrate the birthdays of its patrons. In order to avoid this most annoying practice, you either have to eat at
a fast food restaurant or a super fancy, upscale restaurant. Otherwise, your Friday meal is going to be
interrupted by Cindy’s birthday and you’ll be ask to clap or scream “yee haw”
or some other nonsense.

I implore you to help me put an end to this practice. The next time you are in a restaurant and
your conversation is interrupted by Cindy’s obnoxious birthday celebration,
cross your arms, look angry and refuse to participate. You’ll be surprised how ineffective yet
self-satisfying it is. We shall overcome!


  1. So you were the bitch that tried to ruin my birthday song, hmm....EVERY PARTY HAS A POOPER AND THAT'S WHY WE INVITED YOU!
    You just crossed your arms and looked all disgusted while I chowed down on my three day old brownie covered with ice cream to hide how crusty it was. I think you were just a little bit jealous 'cause you didn't get a crusty brownie too.
    Maybe we should put a hat on your head and sing, "Grumpy butt, grumpy butt, she'll have to pay for her own ice cream. . .la, la, la"
    Would you let them put the hat on your head and sing to you if you got a free birthday tequila shot?

  2. Let's all join in!!!!
    Happy birthday to you!
    happy birthday to you!
    Happy birthday dear cindyyyyyyy!!!!
    happy birthday to you!!!!

  3. This is great Jules. I hope I remember to have a group of kids working at a restaurant come out and serenade you. What fun would that be? Since I don't see you that often, it will come as a mortimer-fying experience. I can't wait.

  4. Papa Dale, I mean "Cindy"-
    Yeah, that's right, I know it's you. I'd say I'm sorry I ruined your birthday but that would be totally insincere.
    I might let them sing to me for a tequila shot. It depends on how many birthday drinks I've had so far.

  5. Melinda-
    Keep it up. Your birthday wasn't too long ago. There may be a sombrero in your future!

  6. Uncle Carni-
    Mental note: do not go to TGI Fridays or any type of Steakhouse chain with Uncle Carni. It could get ugly.

  7. And now that Uncle Carni has that idea in his head, I can never go out with him again. It is alredy embarassing enough. Now I live in fear of every day being my birthday. There is no way I'm singing happy birthday to anyone again. It just could be someones boyfriend being a total @$$. God help us!!!

  8. Oh how I wish I had logged on on the 29th so I could take credit for Cindy, but, alas, 'twas not me what rote it!! Why, pray tell, would you think of me first when someone slaps you with a real hum-zinger? Grandma Mary says; " Hope to see you on your Birthday "

  9. Now I feel really bad, Papa Dale, b/c I thought it was you. I did think that the "bitch" part was uncharacteristic but the "grumpy butt" part sounded like something you'd say. I think I may know who wrote it now...
    So sorry I falsely accused you :)

  10. I love me some sombreros!!! So bring it on!

  11. I must confess. . . .Cindy lives in my closet.

  12. Aunt Becky-
    It was YOU? I never would have guessed, NEVER. In fact, I emailed a friend practically accusing her of being Cindy the birthday bitch. Oops!
    You made a lot of people laugh :)

  13. Wow, so the Cindy mystery is solved....LOL
    And Aunt Becky I must say that you just about made this preggo chick pee herself...that was great!