Wednesday, February 25, 2009

My Pregnant Witness…

…isn’t so good.

I didn’t realize it was that bad until recently.

A couple of weeks ago, Angie and I made plans to go see He’s Just Not That Into You. We had seen the previews, and even though we are vehemently NOT chick flick fans, we liked the cast list enough to consider attending.

Personally, I love Ginnifer Goodwin. She is an excellent actress. I adore her in HBO’s Big Love where she plays Margene, the third wife in a complicated polygamous relationship. She shines in her role and as a result, I’ve become a big fan.

Her part in HJNTIY is central to the story, not to mention part of a cast that includes the caustic Justin Long (another personal favorite – loved him in Live Free: Die Hard), the versatile (and wickedly handsome) Bradley Cooper, and always-pitch-perfect Drew Barrymore.

(There was also Jennifer Aniston, Ben Affleck, Jennifer Connelly, Scarlet Johansson, and Kevin Connolly (even more annoying here than in Entourage). But, blah, they weren’t the ones we were revved to see.)

Anyway, we also wanted to see Push, the new “superhero” movie with Chris Evans (“Pinocchio” – in that he’s wooden. See how I did that? Burn!) and the fantastic despite-an-awful-script Dakota Fanning. She is…wow…she is a talented actress, especially for being only 15!

Our friend Susan was also going to be able to join us for dinner and HJNTIY.

Angie had called me at noon and asked where I felt I could go for dinner. With my stomach being so touchy, I figured “bland” would be best. I thought soup and salad at Panera sounded good.

Of course, by the time the work day was over, soup and salad no longer sounded good. My “cravings” are like that. They last about 20 minutes, and then I can’t stand whatever food I was just salivating over.

But, I figured, at the very least I could get a plain bagel with plain cream cheese at Panera.

In my four and a half months of non-stop sickness, there have only been a few foods that always stay down. My safe foods include cheeseburgers (seriously!), milkshakes, root beer, frozen fruit bars, applesauce, pudding, and plain bagels with plain cream cheese.

I was already feeling nauseous when I got to Panera, but I was warming to the idea of having a bagel and cream cheese. Inside, I met up with Angie and Susan.

Now, before I go any further, I should explain one thing.

They know us at Panera. It is Brett’s favorite, favorite restaurant. So, we are there a LOT. As for me, I grab a bagel and cream cheese there on a habitual basis. The servers recognize our faces and greet us like the “regulars” that we are.

We know almost all of the servers and are comfortable enough to smile easily and make small talk.

Back to the movie night, Angie and Susan placed their orders. I stepped up to the counter where I ordered a plain bagel with plain cream cheese. My server was this little waif of a girl I’ve ordered from many times before. She’s very tiny and very sweet.

Upon hearing my order, she gave a sad frown and said, “I’m so sorry. We’re out of plain bagels.”

“You’re out of plain bagels? How can you be out of them? I mean, isn’t this a BAGEL restaurant? Listen, I’m pregnant, and there are only so many things I can eat! I was counting on this.”

She twisted her hands nervously. “We can toast you a plain piece of bread. We have lots of gourmet bread. Maybe you could have a slice of plain bread with cream cheese?”

I shook my head. “No, thank you. If I can’t have a plain bagel, then I don’t want anything.” I pouted and stomped back to the table where Angie and Susan were waiting.

“You’re not eating?” Susan wanted to know.

“They didn’t have anything I could have.” I said simply.

“Don’t you think you were a little hard on that girl?” Angie asked me while sipping her drink.

“I wasn’t hard on her. This is a freakin’ BAGEL restaurant, and they have the NERVE not to have the most basic of bagels on hand. Frankly, I don’t think they deserve my money.” I said, decisively.

Angie recognized my rare stubborn streak rearing its ugly head and backed off with nary an eye roll.

I dismissed the whole thing until this morning.

I stopped in to Panera for a “treat” (a breakfast that stays down) of a plain bagel and plain cream cheese.

As I stepped up to give my order, I saw I had the same server as on movie night. She was smiling broadly as I gave my order. She turned her head to check out the bagel rack and then turned back to me with a horrified expression on her face.

“Oh, no! We’re out of plain bagels! A customer bought us out at 8 o’clock.” She took a deep breath. “I remember you. We didn’t have plain bagels for you last time, and you got really mad.”

I smiled at her dramatic license. “I didn’t really get that mad,” I said, sweetly.

Her single raised eyebrow spoke volumes.

“Did I?” I asked, as I felt a faint pink flush sweeping up into my face.

She didn’t say anything, and her silence sounded deafening in my ears.

“Well, if I did, I’m sorry.” I apologized. “You almost always have the plain bagels. It’s just once in a while that you don’t. It’s okay, really,” I assured her.

“See, I’m pregnant, and there are only a few safe things I can eat,” I said, hearing the flimsiness of the excuse even as I said the words.

“It’s okay,” she said kindly. “I just happen to always be the one who has to tell you.”

Wanting to repair the damage, I bravely ordered a different bagel and even an orange juice (double treat!). I handed over my debit card and wished my tiny, pony-tailed server a good day.

“It’s probably going to be a good day now that I’m leaving,” I muttered, feeling pretty lousy about losing my temper. (And a little peeved at Angie for pointing it out right away. Don’t you just hate it when friends call you on stuff, and they’re RIGHT?)

I headed out to my car and settled in my seat for a minute. I prayed silently that God would help me be a good witness, in spite of all the rage-inducing hormones flooding my nervous system.

I want my pregnancy to be a witness to His glory, not inducing of a rotten attitude that has my head on a Wanted poster at Panera:



a joyful nusiance said...

I love bagels and cream cheese!! In fact, my favorite is cinnamon swirl and strawberry cream cheese.
And pregnant or not, I think I would have reacted the same way!

October Dawn said...

First let me say thanks for making the correction on your blog title. I feel flattered. I really do (I'm not sure I should, but maybe it's because so many of my students don't correct their work after being told and told and re-told. But you listened and corrected! A++)!
I think you did a good job apologizing to the little pony-tail-girl. She's happy you're not still angry. I can feel it! You did right in the end.

Sun-Kissed Savages said...

(“Pinocchio” – in that he’s wooden. See how I did that? Burn!)--HA HA HA!! I love you and your writing!!

Poor girl (her not you-- sorry!) At least she didn't cry, right? And you DID apologize. Late is better than never.
And better to have *cough* angry customer like you rather than a "REAL" angry woman. :-) Pat, pat.