When the blind date arrived at the nursing school dormitory in a bright yellow Smart car, Sally should have run. Her nursing classes had been keeping her busy and she had not been on any dates this semester. An evening out with a nice dinner would be just the ticket. Bob emerged from the tiny car like a moth from a chrysalis. His thick glasses and short stature gave him a bug-like appearance.
“This way, Sally.” He ushering Sally to his car, he opened the door for her and off they went.
They parked in front of the Kung Fu Pagoda Palace an enormous Pagoda-styled structure capable of seating over 200 patrons. The ubiquitous red and gold cat with the waving paw greeted us at the front entrance. Tacky Bruce Lee posters were posted over all the walls.
“How many for dinner?” asked the hostess.
“Two,” replied Bob, “close to the buffet if you please.”
“Right this way.”
We followed our hostess to a large booth of red faux leather and white Formica table with gold flecks.
“How’s this, sir?”
“Sally, I hope you like Chinese food,” queried Bob “and have a big appetite because it is an all-you-can-eat buffet.”
“Well … as long as they don’t use MSG or peanuts.” Sally frowned and gripped the table tightly. “Generally, I prefer quality over quantity.”
“Oh, you’ll be OK a little MSG and peanuts never hurt anyone.”
“It would have been good for you to let me know your plans. Allergies are nothing to sneeze at. I can’t risk an attack.”
“You have hundreds of items to choose from on the buffet,” as Bob pointed to the long buffet table, “surely something will satisfy you?”
The waiter arrived with the paper Chinese zodiac placemats, utensils, water and the jasmine tea. He queried “Will you be dining off the buffet or the menu?”
Before Bob could answer, Sally replied “I’ll take a menu, thank you.”
Bob frowned. “Why do you need a menu, the buffet here is great and very economical?”
“Don’t worry Bob, I will pay for what I order.”
“OK, if you insist.”
Bob made numerous trips to the buffet bring back full plates each time. Sally wondered where he could fit all that food. Sally had wonton soup, spring roll, rice and beef and broccoli with leftovers to take home. Dinner conversation was minimal as Bob focussed mainly on the food. Sally was biding her time wanting the date to be over. They split the bill and headed out to the Smart car. Bob opened the door for Sally to get in. They arrived at the nursing school dormitory and Bob opened Sally’s door again.
As Sally was exiting the car, Bob said “Sally, I had a great time. Would you like to go out again?”
“Well,” Sally was at a loss for words “perhaps, — I’ll call you, OK?”