Thursday, January 24, 2008

No Whine for Me

Maybe just a little whining. My birthday celebration on the "outside" went off without a hitch. I felt somewhat like a psychiatric patient on a day pass, but I did get a sharp knife with which to cut my meat, so I guess a more apt simile is like a soldier on furlough. Ironically, instead of feeling normal and free, I felt mostly conspicuous. Maybe because we sat all alone in a private dining room. Maybe because I had to grill the waiter about the water source. Maybe because Marty looked at the shaved parmesan cheese on the grilled asparagus and thought I shouldn't eat it. Maybe because I had that little bottle of Purell eyeing my every move. Clearly, I am a Special Needs restaurant patron. I know Marty's watching me out of the corner of his eye to see if I develop adverse symptoms which might be traced to my big night out.

And I really shouldn't underestimate the public minefield, or the havoc that might be wreaked from ingesting a small amount of imported Italian cheese. I was reminded of that yesterday when I learned of the deaths of two transplant patients I "know" on the LLS discussion boards. It's a jungle out there, and I should never be complacent.

1 comment:

Ann said...

My first restaurant outing was just as strange. The excitement of doing something "normal" evaporated in the face of so many stares and whispered comments. All of the food had to be cooked beyond recognition and of course it had to pass the "Chris" test. It's a very lonely place we inhabit. I'm considering getting t-shirts printed with the obvious answers as to why I wear a mask in public just to give people something legitimate to stare at. C'est la vie.