I’ve got a confession to make. I once left a restaurant without paying. The guilt has been overwhelming since that fateful afternoon in 2007 and it’s time to get it off my chest.
Let me set the scene for you. My wife was pregnant and craved some steak. Rather than run the gauntlet of disappointing a pregnant women, thus endangering my life, we went to lunch at a nearby Western-themed restaurant filled with licence plates, bull skulls and various leather items that have some vague connection with the Mid-West USA. Our meals arrived and my steak was burnt which, considering a microwave was most likely the kitchen implement of choice, was rather surprising. The gravy also appeared to move on its own. My wife and I picked at our food in a disinterested manner for 20 minutes or so until we decided to cut our losses, pay the bill and leave. 10 minutes passed and we saw no sign of our waiter. I went and stood next to the register. Another 10 minutes passed and still I saw no one. I sat back down and we talked for a further 15 minutes while I played with the rubbery gravy until we both agreed that we make a run for it. We justified our reasoning with excuse after excuse. No staff. Terrible food. Possible rash caused by sentient gravy. There were so many justifiable reasons. I told my wife to walk slowly out of the restaurant. Under no circumstances was she allowed to run. Mainly because this would draw attention to us but also because she was 7-months pregnant.
We eased out of the booth and calmly walked out the door. That’s when I screamed “RUN WOMAN, RUN! RUN FOR THE CAR!” We hustled as fast as we could and took off, half expecting for blue and red lights to appear in the rear-view mirror. They never did. The restaurant closed down several weeks later. I can’t help but feel partially responsible.