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Friday, May 03, 2013

I hate picky eaters. It's the way I was raised.

I was in a caff near Oxford Circus this lunchtime. Not a restaurant but more than a greasy spoon. A caff.

 A woman came in, evidently undecided whether to sit at a table, get something to take away or leave empty handed.

The east European waitresses attempted to help her, pointing at the array of sandwich fillings in the display cabinet and the chalk boards full of hot meal options. She stood there looking studiously unimpressed, much like I imagine Maris Crane might look.

This, don't forget, is in the middle of one of the most cosmopolitan cities on God's earth. The customers represented every type and many ethnicities. The food is nobody's idea of gourmet fare but the place is clean, the service is good and they've been running in that location for over twenty-five years, which means their menu features everything they're likely to be asked for by the thousands of different people who will drop in during the average week.

The woman stood there. She looked at one menu. Then she looked at another. She looked in the cabinet. Then at the chalk board, which must have had fifty options on it. Then she turned and left.

I felt affronted on the staff's behalf. I'll forgive most things but there's something about a picky eater that can make my blood boil.