Poor Hick. He doesn’t ask for much. A towering bowl of soup when the weather turns chilly. A weekly allowance so he can use the debit card for gas and scam auction money from his cash allotment. Rocks socked away in the earth for a retirement nest egg. And once in a blue moon, Hick likes a potato.
We took Genius and a friend out to lunch
Saturday. Hick and Genius both wanted to eat at Roadside Roadkill. That’s not
exactly the name. It’s half right. Hick had his appetite set on a baked potato
with all the fixin’s. At our old favorite local BBQ restaurant, this was called
a Terrible Tater. It was filled with beef or pork, and butter and sour cream if
you wanted. The Roadkill Tato, as described on the menu, came with beef or
pork, cheese, baked beans, butter, and sour cream. Hick said it’s what he
always gets when they go there. I decided I’d give it a try, but I was also
leaning towards some nacho chips, or a platter.
The waitress came, and Hick ordered his
“Oh. I’m sorry. We don’t have any. We will
have to bake the potatoes. The lunch crowd cleaned us out.”
Let the record show that we arrived around
2:30. As Hick wondered out loud after the waitress went to check on how long
that would take: “What kind of restaurant doesn’t bake their potatoes for the
whole day?” Inferring that folks coming in for supper around 4:00 or 5:00 (it’s
the Midwest, you know…we eat our vittles before sundown) might also order a
When the waitress returned, she said it would
be 25 minutes before they were done. As Hick wondered out loud after she left:
“Ain’t it possible to microwave a potato? A potato’s a potato. I want the stuff
IN the potato. I could care less how the potato gets cooked.”
So Hick, being denied his Roadkill Tato due
to time constraints, decided on the pulled pork platter.
"I'll have baked
beans and potato salad for the sides."
"Potato salad? How do you like your
"Well. Like potato salad!"
"I mean, do you like it sweet? Because our
potato salad is a family recipe, made with Thousand Island style dressing. It's
orange. A lot of people don't like it. Do you like Thousand Island
"I don't want none of that. Bring me the
fries, I guess."
The fries were kind of strike three for Hick,
going to bat for a tasty potato treat at Roadside Roadkill. I should know. I
had them, too. Along with slaw. The fries were kind of like Steak N Shake fries,
all thin and pointy and not much more than a stringy hard shell with nothing
inside. The slaw was passable. I ate almost half of it. But before you go
thinkin' Roadside Roadkill was a bust, go take a gander at what Genius ordered.
That's called Roadkill Loaded Chips. Genius
got not the mini chips, but the $11.00 chips. It was served in a metal pie pan,
heaped higher that a bowl of Hick's soup. Even Genius could only eat about a
third of it, and took the rest home. For after his "I'M 21 NOW"
blast, I suppose. That picture shows round chips, so it must be the mini
serving. Genius had triangle homemade chips, like restaurant style chips. Duh!
We were in a restaurant, by cracky! If you look at that link, and go to PHOTOS,
you can see the table we sat at, at the window, to the left of the fireplace.
At the other end of the building, behind the picture-taker, was a full bar.
Which I pointed out to Genius. As if he didn't already know. Who said,
"Yeah. But it's closed."
Oh, the naivety of youth! I'm sure all he had
to do was ask, and they would have served him a drink. Though whether Hick
would have paid for it is uncertain. Probably yes, since he was using the debit
card, and not his own weekly cash allowance.
To thwart Hick's appetite even more harshly,
just as he was asking Genius if he wanted piece of birthday pie (while planning
on ordering one for himself), the waitress brought the bill, slid it onto the
table next to me, and disappeared back into the kitchen. Probably to hold those
potatoes between her knees and in her armpits to bake them.
Hick's disappointment was at least as severe as that of Genius at the DMV, trying to get his over-21 license one day early due to weekend office closure.