Happy Hour, I Mist You!

Happy Hour just got shitty. 

Actually, it’s something that’s been happening over time; the slow decline of Happy Hour in the Connayo-rhymes-with-mayo Valley. But I suppose a slow decline is better than a rapid tanking. Think about it, if you take rapid tanking and apply that to aging, that’s some scary shit! Things slowing start falling apart on you as you age; you lose vitality, you get massive amounts of wrinkles, body parts start heading south, your eyesight goes and your hair turns grey, just to name a few.  Now imagine all that shit happening to you rapidly… you’d drop dead on the spot just from the shock alone. Well, same thing with Happy Hour; losing it in a rapid tanking would probably kill you!

Ya drunk bastard.

Used to be that you could go out on a Friday afternoon around 4ish to some cheesy Mexican restaurant and they’d have this huge spread of free food and you could eat all you want; could stuff your face to high Heaven! Hell (that was intentional) you’d be so happy you’d stay for at least a Margarita or two… or three… or floor…

*hiccup* I mean, four.

And if you didn’t want Mexican food on account of all salt on everything that you’d walk outta there looking like a blow-up doll from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, you could go to other places; ones that served crudité with Ranch dressing and neon orange cheese bites with crackers. Shitty, but free at least. You can’t get that anymore, the restaurants want to charge you for every little thing. Discount on food and drinks for Happy Hour?

Hahahahahaha

Nope.

I mean, if you call reducing the price by a buck or two for a $14 Martini, then yeah, you get your goddamn discount. Restaurants have essentially given up on giving Happy to the Hour. Well, they’re happy, we’re just not.

Take Aroha, for example.

No, I didn’t just sneeze, that’s the stupid name for another restaurant that wants to take your money for nothing…

…and your chicks for free.

Hahaha… haha, ha, ha… ha.

ha…

Sorry.

Anyway, back to this stupid restaurant Aroha. First off, they shoulda just cut to the chase and called it Aloha.  I went there to meet my friend, Ms. M., who’s having a love crisis and needed my opinion, whether she wanted it or not, and she suggested the place. Upon my arrival, this guy in dirty shorts and shirt with an impulse problem, accosted me before I even got to the front door, and for a moment, I thought he was going to tell me the place was closed, because I could never imagine a restaurant in gold-crusted Westlake Village allowing an employee to approach a customer looking so slovenly unless he had bad news to deliver. Like for instance, Trump was going to remain president for a full term, so he and the rest of the staff were going to Canada… or something equally horrible. Turns out, he was just really lonely and needed someone to talk to because the restaurant was empty.

After he finished accosting me, I asked where on the patio I could sit for Happy Hour, which was a joke, because I couldn’t imagine them imposing rules on where you could sit for Happy Hour when they were completely empty.

Well, I was wrong.

Aroha.jpg

Can you see the Ceasar salad? I couldn’t either.

So I sat myself down on the empty patio where he said I could sit to qualify for their “Happy Hour”. It was actually a very nice patio; they had comfy couches and chairs with bright turquoise cushions, and the water misters were spraying a fine mist to keep things cool since it was really hot that day. But here’s where it starts to get annoying: Mr. Spastic approached me again, this time in his uniform, because he was now going to be my server. Christ. Then, he starts confiding in me while I was waiting for Ms. M to show up; telling me he’s been stuck in a rut… for the past 20 years… Jesus, do I look like a therapist? I always get the chatty ones.

Shortly after that, they turned the misters off and when I asked why, he said it was because some customers can complain about it.Some customers”, to which, there were none. I guess I wasn’t considered a customer… so I asked that they be turned on again but only if I wasn’t going to get charged for having them mist me with water. He chuckled, but I couldn’t tell if it was a chuckle because he thought what I said was funny, or a chuckle like, “Of course we’re gonna charge you, you silly twit.” I think it was the latter.

Maybe that’s what “Aroha” means.

I didn’t even know New Zealand had a cuisine… and after eating there, I still don’t know if they do. I can tell you this: It was goddamn expensive. There was also absolutely nothing on their menu that was appealing. Most of it consisted of a bunch of confusing items, none of which constitute Happy Hour in my book. They did offer a cheese plate but when I asked about the assortment, the server didn’t know and he didn’t look like he was going to find out for me either. I waited for him to say “Let me go check for you”, but he just stood there waiting for me to say “Never mind”. Instead, I asked him how much it was and when he said “$25” then I said it. He was a little chubby so I think he was trying to take as few steps as possible. Luckily he wasn’t wearing FitBit or he’d be really disappointed with how his life turned out.

I settled for a Ceasar salad which was a whopping $10 for their “Happy Hour” so I assumed it would be enough to satisfy my hunger. Then the server came out with a bread plate. At first, I thought “Oh, how nice, they brought me a little taster!” but imagine my surprise when I realized that it was my actual Ceasar salad. There were about ten small pieces of lettuce, which works out to be a buck a piece, about 7 tiny croutons and two small pieces of anchovy on top, and if you can count your food, you’re not getting enough. There was no parmesan cheese and I’m not entirely sure, but there may not have been dressing. The plate was so tiny, every time I put my fork in for a bite, I’d lose a crouton, so I think I only had four, which wasn’t a big loss anyway as they were tasteless nuggets of nothing.

The server finally came back just as I was finishing my…  um, salad? Not sure it should be called that. Anyway, I was starving so I asked for some bread, but it came out sounding sad and desperate: “May I have some bread please, sir? Some more food? I am so very hungry.” like I was an orphan beggar or something. I kept waiting for him to say “More? You want… MORE?!!” and start calling me Oliver. But all he said was that I’d have to wait as the kitchen was busy putting together a tasting menu (which explains my Ceasar salad), and it took 20 minutes to bring me some of their shitty bread to top off my “Happy Hour”.

The best part about my Happy Hour experience at Aroha? Saying Sayonara.

Categories: Best food blog, Funny, Happy Hour, Humor, Sarcasm, Satire | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Don’t Get Jinxed!

You ever get so irritated with a server giving you bad service that you never want to return to the restaurant? I have yet to understand why it’s taboo to talk poorly about an annoying server giving you bad service, which is ridiculous because there’s so much of it out there. Saying we shouldn’t talk about bad service is like saying we shouldn’t talk about how shitty Starbucks coffee is, which, we’re not right now because that’s not the subject… even though it does not negate the fact that they serve shitty coffee and there are way too many of them. If Trump really wants to do this country a favor, he should deport all the goddamn Starbucks!

People get uncomfortable when you criticize a server giving shitty service, like you’ll get struck down by lightening or something. The biggest reason I hear people saying you shouldn’t talk badly about a bad server is because their job is sooooo hard

Yeah? So is picking strawberries out in the fields but do you hear the Mexicans complaining about it? No, because when was the last time you found yourself near some strawberry fields… forever?

Any job can be considered hard, not just waiting tables. Just try running this country into the ground! I know because I may or may not have done that crappy job myself at some point (waiting tables, not running the country into the ground) so you can’t preach to this choir. What I find most ludicrous is that we pay servers for the shitty service they give us in the form of a guilt tip (not to be confused with guilt trip). We feel guilty because we’re doing something to them that’s completely rude and intrusive: Ordering food. How dare we? So we give them money at the end of our dining experience whether the service was good or not, out of pure guilt… do you know how crazy ridiculous that is? As crazy ridiculous as a sociopathic reality T.V. narcissist becoming president!

Jinky’s happens to be one of the biggest offenders, and to top it off, it’s so overpriced, so if you want shitty service and a ding in your wallet, go there. On one of my visits, I ordered a cup of their homemade chili. If you order a cup of chili, you’d think you’d get an actual cup, right? Not at Jinky’s! You won’t get a cup of chili, you’ll get a barely-a-cup of chili. That’s an actual measurement they invented. The portion was so small and miserly, I thought they may have mistook me for the midget sitting in the next booth over. Now don’t get your panties in a bunch, I would never refer to a midget as a midget… it was a toddler. Anyway, the goddamn chili set me back $8.00… for beans people! I used to live in Westlake Village, so I was accustomed to getting overcharged, but Jinky’s beat them out in that category.

My biggest complaint is the service, which is consistently bad. Overall, the service can be brimming with apathy, but there’s one particular server that takes the lead in crappy. He’s the crap-master of table-waiting; the king of I-don’t-give-a-shit. For one, he always looks slovenly, with a dirty, wrinkled shirt and greasy hairstyle. Plus he’s sloooow; in pace and comprehension. It would never occur to him, for instance, that if you serve tea, soup or oatmeal, you should probably bring a spoon, because in his caveman existence, dirty fingers work fine. I would bet money that if I uttered the words “Unga Bunga” he would totally get it! That’s because moments before he placed his rotund schlubbiness in my face, he was out back taking a bong load. If you have a couple three hours to waste, sit in his section for amusement. That’s how long it’ll take for him to take your order, bring your food, bring you the things you’ll need with your food, after having to repeatedly ask, and finally, to present you with an insulting bill. And he completely expects to get a tip for all this, not understanding that the word “tip” is actually an acronym for “To Insure Promptness”, obviously a concept that is completely lost on him whenever his mother wakes him up from his nappy-time so he can haul off to work.

Although I’d like to protect my readers from such slovenliness, in the spirit of a 12-Step program, he shall remain anonymous, I will not state his name … except that it starts with the letter M…

…and ends with a T…

…and sounds like the object you wipe your feet on at the front door, which is exactly what I’d like to do whenever he approaches my table to give me that special, shitty service that only a self-entitled Millennial knows how to give (Add one more T on the end for good measure). 

And speaking of T, if you order tea there, be prepared to get hot, brown water because their tea bags are tiny and once you place it in the teapot, it gets diluted to the point where you’re not even drinking tea, but rather, hot, brown water (I think I may or may not have already said that. Thank God I’m not so moronic as to Tweet about it though). So I explained… very slowly… to Mr. T (no relation) why I needed another tea bag and he was so obsequious in his response, I actually thought I was only going to get halfway shitty service that morning instead of the usual full Monty.

Silly me.

He sweetly stated he would need to charge me an extra $1.75 for another tea bag to which I promptly told him no thank you and to please remove the tea from the bill… because they already charge $3.75 for that hot, brown water. Jesus Christ, even Starbucks only charges you around a buck ninety for a cup ‘o crap! Instead of wasting a tea bag and having to take it off of the bill, he could have easily brought me the extra one without an additional charge, since they should serve actual tea and not brown water. In the process, he would have ingratiated himself to me for his effort to provide good service. But, it was not meant to T… I mean, be.

empty-like-my-experience

Empty, like my experience.

Why do I keep going there, you ask? It’s a fair question and I cannot argue it would be ridiculous of me to keep patronizing a place I clearly do not like. The answer is: The food’s not horrible in a town that has horrible food, and if you know how to order, you can avoid getting ripped off. For instance, if you want a light breakfast, they make really good sourdough toast and it’s a mere $2.25. Plus they grill it instead of putting it in the toaster, and it gives it that nice, smoky flavor that I love in grilled bread. You can also share most any dish because the portions are large. I’d avoid potatoes. They tried to be clever by offering their equivalent of Tater Tots, a disgusting food to begin with, one that’s in line with chicken nuggets, Skittles, and bottled ranch dressing *shudder* but it could’ve worked had they made them in-house. It fails because they’re the commercial, frozen kind, what’s so special about that? Their other choices of potato are equally awful. How can you screw up a potato? Ask Jinky’s! For breakfast, they offer a single pancake, which is such a brilliant idea, but then they ruin it by charging six bucks for the goddamn thing. Six. Bucks. For. One. Pancake? Suck it Jinky’s.

Having Mr. T wait on me was enough to make me not wanna go back… until this morning, that is, when I had a lapse in memory and good judgment. But shockingly, the service wasn’t horrible. Mr. T was nowhere to be found and I actually got decent service from a very nice, well-groomed Latina server… which explains a lot. The place also happened to be almost empty… which explains a lot. The one saving grace for service at Jinky’s is Sergio the busboy. He always has a smile on his face and gets me whatever I need when my server disappears… which is frequently.

So if you’re gonna go, just know ahead of time the service is crappy and know what to order to avoid getting ripped off. Otherwise, in the wise words of the real Mr. T: Pity the fool!

Categories: Best food blog, Breakfast, Brunch, Sarcasm, Satire | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments

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