A brief statement of purpose

There are already about a billion food blogs, so what might be a justification of yet another one, and who am I to do it?

What I aim to do in this blog is more than simply provide recipes. While recipes of my own will, in fact, be posted, some of the blog will consist of a variety of comments about restaurants and their practices, food preparation tips, personal annoyances (such as loud restaurants and the epidemic of misspellings on menus), and whatever else pops into my head relating to what we put in our mouths (and swallow, I hasten to add). The whole thing is meant to be somewhat provocative. I hope, if nothing else, it won't be boring. I, of course, solicit reader participation.

As for who I am and why I think I might have something to contribute to public discussions on this essential and pleasurable activity - eating - you'll have to click here.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

"Hi, I'm Kevin (or Kimberly) and I'll be your server."

   Contrary to criticisms of wait staff who tell patrons their names – “Hi, I’m Kevin, and I’ll be your server” – I think they should always tell patrons their names (pseudonymous or not). I could do without the “I’ll be your server” part since it’s obvious that’s why Kevin or Kimberley is standing there. If the staff member is merely filling the water glasses, there’s no need to know that person’s name. If the table needs water refills, telling Kevin himself – the server – is the way to go. Sorry, water glass filler. I don’t mean to depersonalize or objectify you. Keep those water glasses full and maybe one day you’ll be the server and be permitted to reveal your name. So, why do I think we should know their names? Because – this seems obvious to me – you may want to summon them. You might need to call attention to the roach in your salad or, less traumatically, you’ve changed your mind about wanting a salad after the appetizer after all, and Kimberley is nowhere to be seen. Do you grab the harried passing server who isn’t assigned to your table and try to describe the appearance of your server and ask him or her to transmit your wishes or ask him or her to find your server and tell him or her to come to your table? Doesn’t it make more sense, and is more efficient, if you ask that other passing server to ask Kevin to return to your table? Give me a real argument for not wanting servers to tell you their names. I didn’t think so. Stop complaining about this practice, particularly since the criticism carries a slight eau de elitism, “I, the paying customer, am in a clearly superior position vis à vis you, the mere fetcher of food. Thus, I have no need to recognize you as anything other than that. Now take my order and begone with you.” And that just isn’t very nice. Case closed.

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