The Misfortune Cookie

Nearly every Tuesday, I have lunch with my friend Nnelg.  This has been going on for a number of years.  One of ourThe_Fortune_Cookie_(1966)_poster regular places to eat is a Chinese restaurant we really like that is located near to both of us.  Usually, our meal is pretty uneventful, but last week something unusual happened.  We had finished our meals and the check arrived along with the usual  fortune cookies.  I should mention, not only is the food at this place really good, but the fortunes in their cookies are the best I’ve ever come across.  No stupid sayings that make no sense, have no rhythm or contain nonsensical spellings.  But really smart, wise aphorisms and adages that I could certainly live my life by… if I remembered any of them by the time I left the restaurant.

On this Tuesday, the fortunes were particularly good;  Nnelg and I exchanged them and agreed that both the chef and the fortune cookie writer were on their games that day.  We had our wallets out and were in the process of laying out our money to pay the check when our waitress came by and replaced it with another, while saying, “You mistakenly got another table’s bill.”  I then asked if we had also gotten their fortunes.  She looked at me oddly, hesitated and then walked away.  Further evidence that my cleverness doesn’t translate readily to Chinese.

Once we had left the restaurant, I decided I was going to make this Tuesday, “Asian Day”.  Which meant that I would follow up on my oft-delayed plan to get my very first pedicure, something I had been considering for some time.  Not to disgust you, but my feet and toes are in bad shape from a lifetime of pounding and are desperately in need of attention.  Admittedly, I’m not as secure as you may (or may not) think, so I decided to go to a Korean nail salon that’s a bit off the beaten path, hoping that I wouldn’t run into anyone I know.

The salon was, how shall I say….not upscale.  So while I succeeded in remaining anonymous, it may have been at the cost of contracting some rare life-threatening fungus which is endemic to the Gowanus Canal.  Apart from being extremely tense because of the (non)sanitary conditions that were swirling about me, I was also extremely disappointed in the lack of interest in my feet by the poor woman who was attending to me.  I guess I had hopes that having a man as a customer would make me a little unique; that she would want to give my toes special attention.  The truth is, I half-expected that she would want to make love to my feet.  But I was not long into the pedicure when I realized that mine were just another ten digits to her…in a day of nothing but digits.

Surprisingly, the results of the pedicure were better than I expected.  I’d say five or six of my toenails look almost normal.  And considering that one of my nails is totally black and blue from a tennis injury, the denominator by which to measure my toe-success-rate (TSR) should, in all fairness, be reduced to nine.  Which means my TSR is well over 50%!  Not bad for a novice.

I’m kind of excited about this ethnic theme day I’ve come up with.  There are so many directions in which to take it.  For example, I’m going to suggest to Nnelg that we have Spanish food for lunch next week. And after that, I’ll probably head home for a siesta.  I think I’m going to like Spanish Day!

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