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4:17 a.m. - 2002-03-04

SOMEWHERE...KENNY ROGERS AND SATAN ARE LAUGHING HEARTILY AT THEIR PACT

Eeeee gads.

I foolishly made a doctor's appointment for today at 7:40 a.m. Which means I had to get up an hour earlier than normal to get things done on time.

The only problem with that is ... I didn't WANT to get up at 4 a.m. this morning.

But I did.

...And immediately stepped on the dog. Who was conveniently sound asleep on my side of the bed.

She yelped. Susie bolted upright in bed, thinking a burglar was in the house and screamed.

This started a chain reaction that found Andrew screaming about 10 seconds later.

Meanwhile, I felt like I twisted my ankle, because when my foot touched something furry (the dog), I tried to move my foot to where I wouldn't hurt her but it was too late, so I was about ready to scream in pain.

So ... at 4 a.m. this morning, the dog was yelping, the wife was screaming, the baby was screaming and I wanted to scream.

...All because of this stupid doctor's appointment.

There had BETTER be something seriously wrong with me after going through THAT ordeal.


Actually, to the best of my knowledge, there's nothing wrong with me. I just need my diabetes medicine refilled and it's basically a six month checkup period.

Although...well...there's something wrong with me. I don't want to go into any detail about it here, because it's slightly embarrassing and if it's nothing, I'll have to live with the fact that all of you know about it and there's nothing I can do to change that except go back and say "Ha, ha...remember when I said that I had that thing going on? I WAS KIDDING!! Ah ha ha ha ha ha!"

But you guys would know I was lying about it and every time you'd read this you'd be thinking ... "Uncle Bob has what he said he has."

So I'm not going to tell you.

I'll tell the doctor. And if it's something, THEN I'll tell you.

But if the doctor snickers and says that it's perfectly normal, then you'll never know what it is I'm talking about.

This diary can be a cruel diary at times, eh?


So yesterday, after a thrilling episode of church, we decided to go to Kenny Rogers' Roasters for lunch because they now have an "All You Can Eat" special on Sundays.

Granted, I'm on a diabetic diet. But the words "All You Can Eat At Kenny Rogers" are actually the chorus to the theme song of my life.

There was no way in HELL I was going to pass this up.

So we went.

A huge line greeted us. No big deal. Everyone in town wanted some of that "All You Can Eat" deal and it looked like they had plenty of chicken for everyone.

However ... the employees there are legitimate buffoons. The girl cutting the chickens up (which, I'll admit, looks to be a pretty tough job. But you should have never applied for the job if you can't handle it) kept complaining about her hand cramping as she cut the chickens apart with scissors. So each time she cut a chicken, she was removing her gloves and massaging her hands and complaining. So everyone had to wait a little bit longer as she stood there whining and bitching about her job.

And it doesn't help that they don't list your side items on the big board over the counter. If you've never been there, you have to wait until you get to the side items and THEN you can make your choice.

And apparently, there's lots of people in life who look at the act of choosing two side items to eat as being one of the most important decisions they'll ever make. Because they stand there, with their chins in their hands as they weigh the merits of each individual side item while the line behind them grumbles collectively and we all want to yell "IT'S FUCKING CORN, YOU MORON!! CORN!!! THERE'S NOTHING ADDED TO IT...IT'S MOTHERFUCKING COOOOOOOORN!!!"

Anyway, we finally get our food and I ask the girl how we go about getting more chicken, since she gave us a quarter chicken to start with. A leg and a thigh. I knew I could eat that in 30 seconds ... I wanted more already and I hadn't even started.

She said that was what we had to start with and if we wanted more to just come back up to the cashier and she'd hook us up with more.

Not a problem.

So we ate our food and both wanted more chicken.

I go back up to the cashier.

"Sir, you'll have to get in the back of the line for more chicken."

I looked at the line. It was near the door.

"Ummmmm...I was told to just come back up here when we wanted more chicken," I said awkwardly.

"No sir, I've got a line of customers and can't just stop everything to get you more chicken."

Alright.

The goddamned sign outside says "ALL YOU CAN MOTHERFUCKING EAT" It doesn't say "ALL YOU CAN EAT IF YOU HAVE THE TIME TO WAIT FOR OUR IGNORANT EMPLOYEES TO GET IT FOR YOU."

I'm a bit perturbed by this, because I had already paid for more chicken and was now being told that I had to stand in line again for at least ten minutes to get it.

I walked away and did something ... I dunno...looking back it was a bit childish.

I told Susie that you had to get back in line for more chicken.

Nothing wrong with that.

...Except Susie was on the other side of the building when I said it. And I said it loud enough so that everyone could hear me perfectly clear. So yeah...basically...I was sharing that tidbit of information with everyone who had just paid seven bucks to eat more chicken. And I was telling the people in line that were about to spend seven bucks on all you can eat chicken that they would have to get back in that line and deal with Hand Cramp Girl(TM) and morons that couldn't decide between corn and green beans.

So I made it over to our booth as the hubbub was reaching a feverish pitch. I had singlehandedly created a buzz amongst the customers ... none of them could believe that they were going to have to get back in line for an All You Can Eat deal.

I mean...hello? Welcome to Flabbergastedville.

So I sat there, trying to decide if I wanted to get back in line for this. Andrew was getting fussy as we were quickly closing in on his nap time.

Susie looked at the menu above the counter and saw that the food we got was usually $3.99. And we paid $6.99 for it.

Susie is not the type to just give money to former country music stars and their chicken restaurants without seeing anything in return.

So even with the kid beginning to cry, she TOLD me to get back in line.

I did.

And I took our dirty plates with me. Why? I dunno. Because I had a feeling if I didn't, I'd stand in line for 20 minutes and then Hand Cramp Girl(TM) would give me shit because she didn't remember me from before and wouldn't give me two more pieces of chicken.

The couple in front of me turned around and looked at me.

"Do you HAVE to go through the line again if you get All You Can Eat," the lady asked.

"Apparently so," I said. "I was told that you could just walk up to the cashier and they would get you more that way. But when I tried it, the cashier sent me to the back of the line."

"Well," the lady said. "I'm not waiting in this line twice for chicken."

"No, we're not," the man said.

"We'll just order a family meal," the lady said.

...Which takes about five dollars out of Kenny Rogers' pocket.

MUAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA ... *choke* .... sorry.... chicken bone lodged in my throat .... AHAHAHAHHAHAAAAAAAAAA!!!

I HAVE DEFEATED KENNY ROGERS!! I HAVE TAKEN THE GAMBLER DOWN!! TAKE YOUR OWN ADVICE, YOU WHITE-BEARDED SLAVE OF SATAN AND KNOW WHEN TO HOLD THEM, KNOW WHEN TO FOLD THEM, KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAY...AND IF YOU SEE UNCLE BOB COMING...KNOW WHEN THE HELL TO RUN!!!!

I stand there, disgruntled but victorious in that I'm spreading the word that this "Buffet" thing that Mr. Rogers has developed is a SCAM! I'm daydreaming about taking down other corporations single handedly when the lady in front of me talks to me again.

"The cashier is motioning for you," she says.

I look at the cashier and she's waving at me like we're old friends and motioning for me to come over to her.

So I do.

"Write down what you want," she says, handing me a pencil and a slip of paper.

I ALMOST wrote "All the money in your cash register and safe."

ALMOST.

But I just wrote what we wanted. And that is what we were owed and told we could have.

By the time I get back over to the table with our plates refilled ... Andrew's reached the fussy state where he won't be still and is squirming like a fish out of water.

"We have to take him home," Susie says. "He's exhausted and wants his nap."

"But...we...I...we..." I stammered, pointing at the plates that I had to go through hell and back to get.

"Well, we could eat and he could scream bloody murder the entire time," she says, holding the kid as tightly as possible without crushing his baby ribs into powder.

"Okay," I said in a shameful tone. "Let's go."

We covered our plates with napkins and decided to smuggle them out like gypsies. Sure, it's all you can eat. And yes, we WILL eat it. Just not now. Unless Kenny Rogers wants us ruining every customer's meal with a screaming baby.

...I didn't THINK so.

So we left. And as I glanced out of the corner of my eye, I could see the cashier, standing on her tippy toes, craning her neck over that long line of customers, watching us leave with two fresh hot plates of food.

I felt like a heel.

That's one MORE place I can't return to anytime soon.


Alright...it's time for me to wake the wife and kid and get them in gear.

Have a happy Monday!

...And I'll let you know if the doctor thinks my "problem" is something serious or not.

I pwomise.

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