For it to be her birthday, Laura certainly had a rough start to the day. It began with her fighting off the beginnings of a cold and went downhill from there. When she got to the office, water started pouring from an overhead pipe and flooded their new offices. The rest of the day was spent in a hot, humid office. I’d like to think the flowers I had delivered for her birthday brought some light into the day.
We decided that a nice quiet dinner would be in order. I had told Laura about Benito’s Italian, and she wanted to give it a try. It’s close, and would be a relaxing meal…or so we thought.
When we got there one very shady-looking dude with lots of tattoos was sitting out front, as was his baby blue 1966 vintage Cadillac Fleetwood cut down as a low rider with skinny tires and wire rims. It was one sweet ride, but he gave us pause. We went on in, and he smiled, so we felt better.
A swarthy gentleman in an apron greeted and seated us, and we ordered wine, olives, and our entree’s. So far things were going very well, and we started to relax.
About the time we got our salads, a guy wanders in and loudly asks the swarthy guy who seated us, “Are you the owner of this place?” Something was up. He started shouting, wanting to know if a particular person worked there. “Well, when he comes in, you tell him to keep his ***** hands of my sister or I’m going to knock his ****** ****** head off!” The owner attempted to escort the shouting guy out the door, trying to explain that the person in question no longer worked there. Shouting Guy would have none of it, saying that he would wait outside the place until the worker showed up.
Outside, things got even more heated. It turns out the tatooed guy was Benito’s son, and didn’t like the way his father was being treated. Shouting Guy has to really be an idiot. The cooks, waiters, and anyone else empty outside to take care of things – at least seven very large Italian men. Laura said that she wasn’t so sure she needed to see the kitchen staff that closely.
Our food kept coming out while all of this was going on, and the meal was fantastic. I kept an eye out the window, where I saw Benito trying to hold his tattooed son back while Shouting Guy continued to point and shout obscenities. Several large guys stood on the sidelines, should that be needed. Soon, though, no less than four deputy sheriff cars showed up and eventually things calmed down. The Shouting Guy was issued a no trespassing citation, and eventually drove off .
Our water, the cook, the tattooed guy, and Benito himself came by our table and apologized profusely. We told them that we understood that they didn’t cause this. How could they know that someone who had a beef with a former worker would show up? Even with their apologies and assurances that things had calmed down, we still needed a change of venue, and decided against dessert.