Good cafeteria food is the next best thing to eating at Grandma's. I fear that with the demise of the Baby Boomer population, good cafeterias will go the way of the Drive-In theater, and then where will we be? I regularly visit a cafeteria which has been a fixture in Dallas for nigh-on to seventy years with an unchanged menu for nearly as long. The food is impeccable--the angel-kissed cousin of the slop that is served up in similarly titled national chains.
I count my ability to quash my gag reflex as a mark of distinction. Ponder my ability to never miss a beat eating my heavenly egg custard at my favorite haunt whilst geriatric Mr. Hokka Loogie tries to cough up his emphysema in the booth directly behind me. Call me Miss Jackson, because I'm in control.
I found myself eating in one of those national chains recently, as the Dallas cafeteria I love was not convenient to our locale, and I was bent to the will of people too annoying to argue with. Despite my inimitable ability to suppress the involuntary actions of my alimentary canal, I found it a bit, um, distasteful to be sitting in the very cafeteria where my cousin's brother-in-law had a disturbing anti-culinary experience. At this point allow me to say that I'm very open-minded about the choices of others when it comes to cuisine. We all have our little preferences. Just because I don't find toenails appetizing, who am I to begrudge my little Jack Russell Terrorist the fruits of my clippings? As goes my doglet, so goeth the population, apparently. This distant relation was sitting in that very cafeteria (who knows--perhaps at our very table?) with the bald-faced bad taste to attempt to eat potato-skins slathered with cheese, bacon, chives, and other usual aneurism-on-a-plate style toppings. One particular 'tater-skin was extra-chewy. He said it tasted exceedingly foul, and was kind of rubbery, but he kept thinking it would start to taste better. Hello? Eventually, he abandoned this notion and spat the offending article from his mouth, only to find it was the severed finger tip of an employee who had self-amputated in the kitchen there recently. Person ran from the establishment, finger in tow, and contacted a lawyer. Good thing, too, as he came down with Meningitis. Coincidence or Psychic Phenomenon?
Let us review: Be picky about cafeterias, never under any circumstances order the potato skins, and if it tastes nasty and is rubbery, spit that shit out!