Archive for Sunday, September 16, 2012

Boomer Girl Diary: Diet duel while eating out

September 16, 2012


“What are you going to have?” I ask, folding the menu and placing it on the table.

“I dunno. What did we have last night?” he counters, as if I have a clue.

“Lemme think. Chicken, maybe? Yeah, that’s it. I made the Thai thing with the low-fat coconut milk and the brown rice.”

“Was that last night?”

“Who knows? I don’t know.”

“So, I’ll have a burger then.”

“You had a burger Monday night, at the burger place, remember?”

“That was a portobello burger. Or was it salmon?”

“It was a burger burger, and your red meat quota for the week.”

“So, I should probably have fish,” he sighs.

“You probably should,” I respond. “But wild-caught, not farm-raised. And only the ones high in omega-3’s and low in mercury.”

“How do we know?”

“We don’t know. We have to guess.”

“What about fish tacos?”

“Is the fish battered?” I ask, picking up the menu again.

“Lightly battered. That’s almost like grilled, right?”

“Nice try. Ask for grilled. And corn tortillas, not flour.”

“What are you getting?”

“I don’t know,” I say. “Probably the regular. Grilled tilapia, side salad, no croutons.”

“You’re so good.” (Is that sarcasm I hear?)

“I know. I may even spring for a side of broccoli.”

The waitress approaches warily, obviously recognizing us.

“You two ready to order?” she chirps.

“Yes,” I reply. “I’d like the tilapia, grilled, with the house salad. No tartar sauce. No croutons. Balsamic on the side. Chardonnay, but with my meal. Please don’t bring it before. I’ll just drink it. And can I get two lemons in my water?””

“Certainly,” she says, scribbling furiously. “And you, sir?”

“Fish tacos…”

“Grilled fish,” I chime in.

“Like she said,’ he groans. “Please.”

“Would you like fries with that?”

“Sure.” He thinks if he answers real fast, maybe I won’t hear.

“What’d you say?”

“Dammit. Sweet potato fries then. They’re healthy.”

“Excuse me, miss,” I say, politely. “Are the sweet potato fries deep-fried like the regular fries?”

“I think so.”

I shoot him the look. The looks says, ‘Go ahead, make my day.’

“I’ll have the side salad. WITH croutons.” The look comes shooting back at me. (If he were Clint Eastwood, I’d be shaking in my boots, along with the invisible president sitting next to me.) “And some broccoli... WITH A SIDE OF RANCH AND A LARGE BEER.”

“I’ll take some broccoli, too,” I pipe in.

She tiptoes away, leaving us sitting in silence.

“What are we having tomorrow night?” he says, finally.

“I was thinking of making a salad.”

“And pasta, maybe? Haven’t had lasagna since you gave up wheat.”

“Nope. Just a salad.”

“This sucks.”

“I know.”

— Cathy Hamilton is the executive director of Downtown Lawrence, Inc., author of 16 books and blogger at Contact her at


ThePilgrim 5 years, 7 months ago

You make eating sound so tedious and horrible. Why go out to eat and spend money on food and the experience that you are going to groan about? My wife and I recently needed to significantly change our diet because of my high blood pressure diagnosis and her family history of diabetes. We changed to eating red meat once a week. But we plan out when that night will be. Other times out we would likely eat chinese with chicken or shrimp and lots of vegetables As for home, we have experimented with recipes from allrecipes dot com and have many favorites. And have made lots of homemade dishes that we actually prefer to going out.

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