The three of us were sitting in an area Dixie Cafe - my wife, myself, and a young Hispanic friend - when, at the next table, an elderly gentleman asked, in stentorian tones, “When are they gonna make you change your name?”
Was he talking to us? Well, no actually, he was addressing his remark to the man I assumed was the day-shift manager of the eatery.
“What do you mean?” he asked, not realizing the intellectual swamp he was about to step into.
“Your name? Dixie Cafe!”
And we were off to the races.
As the manager moved closer, perhaps realizing that he needed to contain the conversation to the immediate table, and not have it extend to the entire restaurant, he began speaking with him about the name - turns out in some places Dixie Cafe is called the Delta Cafe - but the man was not to be deterred.
Loudly, as his wife lowered her head over her meal and occasionally attempted to steer the conversation into other topics, he went on . . . and on . . . and on.
Folks are taking flags down.
Fort Smith High School is changing their fight song.
And on . . .
Honestly, my appetite would have been better served if he had just raved on about, say, his toenail fungus.
In the meantime, the hapless manager stayed by his side, speaking in low tones, a look of desperation occasionally crossing his face.
It made me wonder if the old fellow had picked Dixie Cafe that day simply because it was the Dixie Cafe. Cuz, you know, he couldn’t find a Plantation Peanut Barn, an Antebellum Apple Store or a Rebel ravioli Diner.
Somebody obviously just needed a hug . . . but it wasn’t coming from me.
Quote of the Day
“That's your lot. We don't want to leave but we're being told to by people we've never met who don't listen to [us].” - DJ Danny Baker lashing out after being told his daily London radio show was being axed