Each week, I’ll be checking out a different restaurant, bar, or other such establishment to watch the Dolphins game, so I can report back to you with the details of my experience in
bullet point format some format that will probably change every week. This week, I took my talents to Flanigan’s in Weston. Here’s what you missed:
Few chain restaurants are as consistently awesome as Flanigan’s. No matter which one you go to, the chicken wings are exactly as good as the chicken wings at another location. Not even McDonald’s can offer that kind of consistency. The only noticeable difference between the one in Weston and others I’ve been to was that the usual 35-68-year-old waitresses were replaced with college girls in short shorts, which caught me off-guard. I think I spent the entire first quarter trying to wrap my mind around the change.
Flanigan’s is a fun place to people watch, though, so when I wasn’t watching Ryan Tannehill trying incredibly hard to not die, my eyes were fixated on the people around me, and boy were they a delight. I’m sure you can find most of these folks at any restaurant in America, but I happened to meet them here.
These are The Five People You Meet at Flanigan’s:
1. The Super Cool Dad.
A commercial for Anchorman 2 popped up on the TV and the 40-something-year-old father wearing a worn baseball cap let out a few strange noises of excitement before turning to his kids and yelling, “CAMPOUT!” Yes, dad plans on dragging his son and daughter—both under the age of 10—to a movie theater, the night before Anchorman 2 opens, to camp out for, well, I’m not sure what for. Tickets? A good seat? In case the theater was in danger of selling out of Jujubes?
The last time I heard of people camping out for a movie, it was Star Wars Episode I, but that was in ’99. (People also dressed up in costume to see that, which is another ridiculously unnecessary thing altogether.) I can’t imagine camping out to see a movie these days. Especially not a movie like Anchorman. Like, couldn’t you just wait two days and see it in a mostly-empty theater? Maybe take your kids on a Saturday afternoon? I know Super Cool Dad was just trying to be super-duper cool, but forcing your kids to camp out overnight to see any movie—let alone a Will Ferrell movie—should probably get you an automatic investigation by Child Services.
2. Executive Decision Husband
A father and son were sitting in a booth, waiting until the mother arrived to order food for the table. Another five minutes went by and the dad called the waiter over, exasperated.
“I’m making the executive decision to order without her,” he says, without a trace of sarcasm.
That, right there, is a father who takes being the man of the house a little too seriously. We get it, Ogg, you run this family. But, this isn’t IBM—there aren’t any “executive decisions” to make. Just order your stupid chicken wings without making your wife out to be some low-level employee at The Smith Family.
This dude almost certainly works under some middle-management douchebag in a bad tie who says stuff like this every day. He hates that guy, but he’d also want nothing more than to be him. He probably has his son send faxes for him.
3. Annoying Trivia Guy
For some reason, Flanigan’s keeps a stack of old Trivial Pursuit cards on each table, which inevitably leads to one person in the group morphing into a game show host, quizzing his/her wholly uninterested friends, who just want their nachos to get there already.
Trivial Pursuit cards at a dining table is so stupid. There are any number of questions you can ask your friends and family about their lives or politics or whatever. Personal questions. Personal conversations. You know, the reason you’re out to dinner in the first place.
Or you can ask them completely pointless questions about the 1988 Academy Awards.
4. Guy Who Claps for People Who Can’t Hear Him
In the booth directly behind me, there was a group of Patriots fans. (Strike one.) They had thick Boston accents. (Strike two.) But, by far, the most annoying thing about them was how often they clapped at the TV, as if Tom Brady would be able to hear them and feed off their energy. These weren’t the short claps you see people do when they’re excited. Those are usually followed by a “YES!” of some sort. No, these were long, extended claps, as if to show appreciation.
These people also exist in movie theaters and it’s not any less dumb. Who, exactly, are you clapping for? Batman? You know he’s not real, right? You realize that he didn’t actually defeat anybody, that they’re just pretending?
This whole clapping at a screen thing seems like a relatively new phenomenon. (Nobody clapped at the end of Titanic, that I can remember.) It feels like it’s only a matter of time before directors start filming curtain calls at the end of their movies.
5. The Guys Who Split Dessert
During the third quarter of yesterday’s game, a group of three guys sitting in a booth across from me ordered one of those ice cream-brownie concoctions that every chain restaurant seems to have on the menu these days…and it kinda weirded me out. Three men, three spoons, one dessert. It just seemed strange.
It doesn’t make sense that this would be one of those homophobic REAL MEN DON’T GO SHARING SALIVA WITH OTHER DUDES thoughts, because I don’t have this reaction with any other foods, just ice cream. Two guys sharing a bowl of soup? Perfectly normal. Two guys splitting fajitas? Awesome. But two guys digging into ice cream together is never not an odd site to me. And what makes it even more nonsensical is that it’s something I’ve totally done before!
I’m not sure what I’m doing there.
Viewing Experience: 5/5
Total Score: 12/15