Saturday, March 21, 2009

Chilling at the Drive-In and So Forth

My wife and I both spent about seven hours at the office today; client events are coming up quickly and the workload grows exponentially as they get closer. No phone traffice and only moderate email traffic allowed me to focus on some of the more intense tasks, things I tend to screw up when I'm interrupted on a routine basis. The same is true for her; she gets more done when the interruptions disappear.

The fact that it was Saturday and we had no time-specific obligations enabled us to take a longer-than-usual lunch. We drove to Keller's, an ancient burger drive-in on Harry Hines, a notorious area known lately more for its burgeoning Asian and Hispanic commercial districts than for its reputation as a sleezy strip that's a haven for prostitutes and drug dealers.

We've been to Keller's just once before. The food is nothing special, but the atmosphere is unique. Most of the clientele appears to be rough-hewn. They sit on their Harleys or in their jazzed-up trucks and low-riders, looking hard and abused.

Most of the waitresses look like they're down on their luck. Ours was in her early fifties, I'd guess, but she could have been much younger; whatever her age, she looked like she'd had a hard life of cigarettes and whiskey and the occasional black eye. She was talkative, though, and pleasant. She said she'd only worked there nine days. She had just moved up to an apartment near I35 and Royal, where she was staying with friends. Before her move, she had lived in the Oak Cliff area. She hopes to be able to put away enough to get a place of her own soon, she said.

While we were waiting for our burgers, a couple of Hispanic guys pulled their car next to ours and cranked up the volume very, very loud on their over-bassed automotivef boom-box. My immediate reaction to them was to think they were simply looking for someone to challenge them, which would give them the opportunity to get into a fight. Or, they were demonstrating that they were bad-asses so no one would get the idea they were the sort of guys to mess with. And then they ordered beers; no burgers, just a couple of bottles of beer delivered to their obnoxiously loud car. Their discourtesy pissed me off, but I was not in the mood to get my ass kicked, so I said nothing but a few loud comments to my wife about "the assholes in the car next to us." After awhile, their loud ranchero music started to sound good, so I chilled.

Later on, I commented to my wife that I had decided not to get stressed by the two guys and their rudeness; my wife patted me and said it was a good thing and she was proud of me. That was before I cursed loudly and made an obscene gesture at some idiot who cut me off.

The remainder of the day was good. But I'm tired and so won't write about it now. Maybe later, maybe not. Well, I will mention that we bought a nice ribeye, six bottles of cheap wine, yellow and orange tomatoes, squash, a superb shrimp and crab dish in nicely-spiced sauce, limes, cucumbers, radishes, jalapeƱos, and some other wonderful things...and we had a wonderful dinner.

1 comment:

YourFireAnt said...

I echo that "good for you!"