Archive for August, 2008

Apparently soy makes you impotent. So if we wait long enough the hippy population will eliminate itself…

I’m not a vegetarian. I do not, nor have I ever had, the slightest qualm about eating meat. The idea that I am consuming a dead animal does not bother me. If I was hungry and there was a very cute baby lamb in front of me I would happily bash its head in with a rock so that I could eat its delicious innards, hampered only by the fact that my knowledge of sheep anatomy is too sketchy to guarantee I wouldn’t end up eating its small intestine or something equally distasteful.

I tend to treat moral vegetarians with suspicion. Essentially, I don’t care if you choose not to eat meat. Thats fine, it just means there are more delicious animals for me. However, if you are the squeamish type of vegetarian, please do not have dinner with me. I have no intention of ordering steak well done because you don’t like the sight of blood, well done steak is a flavourless travesty which should only be fed to children with weak immune sytems, and dogs. I happen to like my steak to taste like something that was recently alive, not something that was recently part of an old leather shoe.

Which brings me to my current problem, namely that this has resulted in years of being repeatedly served overcooked meat. Granted, my definition of overcooked is most people’s definition of dangerously raw. To be entirely honest its not limited to beef, I find it hard to eat chicken that has been in the frying pan long enough to be brown on the outside, and I like to make toast that can only be identified as different from untoasted bread by the slight crunchiness and not the colour. But hey, its a matter of personal taste, I don’t criticize all the crazy fuckers who eat butter made of peanuts (wtf? who even came up with that? “Oh look, small, slightly hard but chewable nuts of a mildly disgusting taste, I know! Lets grind them into paste so we can put them on more stuff! Yeah!” And they call the english weird for Marmite).

Irish and english waiting staff in particular have an odd deficiency. When you ask them for rare steak they assume you are just doing so because you heard it on tv, and that you don’t really mean it. So they give you something slightly pink in the middle, and expect this to be sufficient. American waiting staff assume you do want what you ask for, unfortunately, they don’t actually understand what it is if they haven’t already been asked for it several thousand times by people without a funny accent. So after years of having to send back overcooked meat due presumably to misinterpretation rather than actual incompetence, I have become rather explicit about what it is that I want them to do.

This in turn has led to an intriguing discovery, namely the fact that it is universally weird to be a certain degree of specific about food. So when they ask how I would like my steak and I respond with “well, how rare can you do it? Ok, then very rare. Blue. As rare as you can cook it in fact. Just kind of warm it” people look at me as if an extra arm has sprouted from my forehead and is waving a small knife menacingly. This may be partly to do with the fact that I like to eat raw cow flesh, but I think its mostly because they don’t expect me to give a damn.

So restaurant employees, please rest assured. I won’t scream at the sight of blood on my plate, I don’t care about freaking out the other diners, and I really do want what I just asked for. If you are not sure about it, ask me what I mean. If you are too nervous about serving raw food, tell me I can’t have it like that and I will order the fucking pasta instead. Because if I have to send back one more fucking meal because no-one bothers checking that “blue” actually means “almost entirely red”, I will…. make like an american and passive-aggressively tip only 12.5 percent, thats what I’ll do. Fear my wrath.