My boyfriend and I had just finished a 3-hour, 9-course meal at Seäsonal. He had ordered a coffee, and I had ordered a Diet Coke, and our food was quietly digesting as we discussed what I should do with my life.
The table next to us, which was approximately six inches from ours in true NYC fashion, had been mostly well-behaved all night. Two of the four people seemed to be dating, and the guy had brought along a British friend who was new to the city, so the girl had brought along a friend for him. One of the girls had graduated from culinary school, but she wasn’t being obnoxious about it. They seemed like not-horrible human beings.
But then two more friends arrived. The girl had a Latina-Jersey accent, and though I originally thought she was dating the guy she came with, she was soon working all of the men at the table. The guy was just generally loud and annoyingly thought it was appropriate for him to go over the success of their dinner’s wine pairings with their waiter. The final decision: not successful.
I could deal with all of that, though. What I couldn’t deal with was the way he then started in on the girls at the table for drinking coffee with their desserts. He chided them for not being as sophisticated as he was with his red wine, and then he added, “But the worst is people who drink Coke at nice restaurants. This isn’t McDonald’s.”
Naturally I took a sip of my drink at that moment and said, “Mmm, this Diet Coke is delicious,” but he didn’t pay any attention.