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Going 'In Burrito"

Greetings! My boy Mr. Schneider has offered some space in his new blog, and I've decided to take him up on the offer. Hopefully, this experience won't end up sucking, and I'll be able to impart some of my insights onto his regular readers (both of you). I've told Chris I'll post randomly, and try to be as witty and topical as possible. I won't even sniff his level of humor and insight, as I've come to realize he's pretty good at this. Also, I'm working under the "Mr. Noodle" title, both to hide my identity and give a shout out to the dude who tirelessly entertains my kids with his wacky antics each day.

I've jotted down a few topics I'd like to post on, including: why I'm not so sure my two-year old son is really mine, why Chris is closing in on becoming one of the top 5 Schneiders of all time, and why I never miss a movie with a sword fight in it. However, the idea for my inaugural post on Atomic Trousers came to me today while I was out to lunch.

I live and work on the trendy east side, so I pass numerous 5-star restaurants every day I'm in the car (Hardee's, Applebee's, IHop just to name a few). Today, while my original noon hour plan was to go burger shopping, I dropped in on my friends at the neighborhood La Bamba on East Washington Ave.

First off, as I walk in, I ask myself what kind of business must this place be doing if they are completely empty at 12:15pm on a Tuesday? I'll bet not 1% of the restaurants on the planet don't get at least one patron by noon on a weekday.

I settled on the Super Nachos for $7, figuring if they were legit, I'd be done eating for the day. Not so. One small spoonful of bean slop, next to no cheese and only a couple of skinny strands of chicken greeted me as I opened up my styrofoam bowl. If those are Super Nachos, Taco Bell's Nachos Bell Grande should win an award or something. I'm nacho average Mexican food guy too, so believe me when I say they were weak. I should've played it safe and buried a burrito like everyone else does.

Shortly after sitting down (in front of a tv showing muted soccer highlights on Telemundo), in walks a super fat lady, which obviously grabbed my attention a bit. With only her and me in the entire restaurant, I could easily overhear her order, which sucked for her, since she ordered enough food to feed a submarine crew. It went something like this, "Yah, (breathless from almost running to the counter) Hi, I'll have two steak burritos, each with a side of beans and rice for here, then (in damn near a whisper), I'd like an order of your tamales to go." As someone who tries not to ever overhear what others are ordering, or watch them as they eat, I was saddened by the fact I knew she was about to eat the equivalent of three burritos as big as my head. To borrow a line from David Spade, I could almost hear her getting fat.

Then, not two minutes later, as I was settling in and reading the movie reviews in latest edition of Voz Latina, in walks a younger hispanic guy and his young son. Nothing out of the ordinary there, except for the fact the little boy had on these sweet sunglasses. My first thought was that daddy might be letting Junior hold his shades while he orders their lunch, but no, the kid kept them on until they sat down to eat. My two year old son doesn't even let me put on his coat! I wonder if it is a cultural thing?

Finally, as I was leaving, I made a pit stop at the soda machine for a refill, the guy at the counter, grimacing like the angry dude who mugs Patrick Swayze in "Ghost", yells out that refills are 35 cents. I smile and tell him, "yep, gotcha" purely as a defense mechanism. Thinking he was joking, since NOBODY charges for refills anymore. I fill up my cup and begin to walk out, when I hear him hollar, "Amigo, you must pay for refills!". With about 10 people now in the restaurant, I turned around, smile and say, "you've got to be sh*tting me". Then, I toss my full cup in the garbage and walk out wondering if all this craziness would be a good topic for my maiden voyage on Atomic Trousers....