restaurants and other eating places.
our older girls work part-time in local pubs, clubs and
restaurants. Jackie has worked mostly as bar staff for the
last few years, and she has recommended her younger sister
Kate for a few jobs in the restaurants of the pubs where she
works. It's a good deal, Jackie likes the social
interaction, Kate likes the professionalism and service
aspects (and the extra cash while she's at uni. Jackie
works 'part-time' full-time). Kate is less self conscious
now, but we've been careful not to turn up at these places
in case we are 'embarrassing'. My parents are here,
This night we were invited, because Jan's parents were
staying and Kate thought they'd like the food where she was working. We
were a big group, my daughter was with us from Melbourne
with a school friend, and the four adults. The evening was ok,
as the barb goes, I
went knowing what to expect, and wasn't disappointed. As the images tell, I was
also acutely uncomfortable in the environment.
Of course people eat out for lots of reasons. Their
choices are based on fashion, value, social comfort,
social occasion and sometimes even for the quality of
cooking and ingredients. Those of us lucky enough to eat
out (even if it's just occasionally) at good restaurants,
and those who also cook, eat and read about good food, are a
minority. Because we are the explorers, we may be influential in
changing mass tastes and customs, but we should never kid
ourselves that this is how everyone wants to eat.
I believe we choose places to eat for the support and reinforcement
they give us to a complex set of our social and cultural
rules. Some places you just feel comfortable in, others...
scared. I will watch with interest how we pass,
intentionally or not, those values on to our children, and
see how they will eventually synthesise their own rules.
Kate at the servery window and wait...
isn't that a print of a badly painted, life-size picture
of Kramer from Seinfeld on the wall behind?