Friday, May 1, 2009

Minor Grievances

Kaiser Grill, Palm Springs, management has to die. "Harsh words!" you say? To cover myself in the event everyone in management is suddenly crushed under a SunBus (PS public transportation) let me say that was hyperbole.

For years I've been locked in the Great Prawn Wars with them. It was love at first bite -- the prawns wrapped in pancetta, grilled and served with a citrus reduction. Then -- suddenly -- no prawns. I protested; nothing happened. I took to reading the menu posted near the sidewalk and if they weren't on it; we didn't eat there. If they were, we did. Too busy Monday night to look.

Monday night we went in for dinner and there were immediate changes. KG has a double patio split by the entrance. From the street, the left hand side is non-smoking; the right hand side permits smoking. Naturally I asked for smoking only to be smugly told, "Oh, the entire patio is now non-smoking!"

It got worse. Perusing the menu -- no prawns, no meatloaf (which Richie liked.) The "old" shrimp cocktail came out in a sundae dish with a scoop of guacamole and tri-colored chips. The "new"? "Poached Prawns - wild white shrimp with cocktail sauce and lemon."

I ordered the Caesar salad which came with a "Parmesan cookie" and a wood-oven baked pizza of Asian pears and gorgonzola. Richie ordered chicken piccata with split pea soup to start. Service was languid despite a dearth of customers.

The manager wandered by for comments and when I complained about the missing favorites, he shrugged and said, "The owner said, 'I'm fed up to my back teeth with this menu - five years! Change it!'" He added, "He signs the paychecks..."

When the bill came, it arrived with a "Comments" card (another example of not thinking things through -- disgruntled customer?) I wrote, "Perhaps you could have a monthly Old Home Night and serve the dishes your clientele has come to expect. You could let your client base know via an e-mail or flyers on each table."

One of my rules -- Never complain unless you can offer a solution.

The Plumbers Apprentice
Richie was one, back in his salad days. Yesterday he decided to test both toilet tanks for leaks, but he didn't tell me he was going to do oit. Mid-afternoon, I go into the upstairs bathroom to pee, finish my business, stand up and turn around to flush the toilet. The water was a bright pink! I very nearly screamed. A nanosecond later, I realized my innards were all in place and yelled, 'Richie! What in HELL did you put in the toilet?" (Answer: red food coloring that he uses for the hummingbird feeder.)

Good Hotel Room Hiding Place
The maid had been and gone. Richie wanted to go for a swim. I didn't want to leave my watch anywhere visible. "Ah-hah!" I popped it into the empty coffee container of the coffee pot and went my merry way. I'll check underneath the coffee maker -- I bet you could leave a lot of money in a ziplock bag there. I'm thinking of Las Vegas where the room safes are often considered to be Not That Safe.

No comments: