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O-live Foolin' You!


I’m a big fan of April Fool's Jokes. Usually, Pascal is my victim, but this year, my mother was the one who played the (horrified-turned-happy) fool! On April 4th, she celebrated her sixtieth birthday. Unbeknownst to her, we had planned a big party with quite a few surprise out-of-town guests. One of those guests was Anne, a friend from Norway that my mother hadn't seen in fifteen years. Since Anne was flying in to North Carolina on April 1 and only able to stay for one week, we had to find a way to plan a "pre-surprise" surprise so she would have enough time with our mother before the actual party. Lucky for us, Anne arrived on April Fool's Day.

I called our local Olive Garden restaurant (Mom's favorite - what can we say?), and spoke to the managers about our plan. The entire staff was accommodating and excited about being in our joke, so we booked a table and made our special request; we wanted a rude, abusive waiter who would give me a reason to ask for a manager. When "The Manager" came to our table, it would actually be my mother's friend, Anne.

We all arrived at the restaurant early to take our places for the joke. Prior to our mother's arrival, I gave our waiter, Chris, lots of ideas on how he could insult me (Example: I'll order a high-fat-dish like Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo, and you say: "Honestly, ma'am, I think you should be ordering a salad..."); I had told him he had permission to spill drinks or food on me: I had begged him to show no mercy and act as outrageously as he pleased. Anne would hide at the bar, waiting for her cue to come to the table to speak with me, the "angry" customer.

There was just one problem - our waiter, Chris, was such a nice guy that I couldn't get him to do anything bad enough to warrant calling a manager! So, I tried to instigate him: I ordered the fettuccine as planned and Chris asked, "Are you sure?" I replied: "Yeah, do you have a problem with that?" Chris said: "No, but there are other choices on the menu...". Instead of being horrified by our waiter's terrible service, my mother was aghast at my "rude" behavior! Meanwhile, Anne hid at the bar for what felt like an hour, sipping wine and waiting for her cue while I desperately tried to get Chris to insult me!


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