catching flies

Pam and I were having lunch at a restaurant. As we waited for our main courses to arrive, the server dropped off a small plate with some ranch dressing to go with the anticipated salad and a corn muffin which is apparently a special bonus for the salad eaters.

Pam likes good corn muffins but the ones in this restaurant don’t qualify. Pam got tired of arguing with the servers about bringing the corn muffins so she usually just ignores the muffins and saves her energy for keeping away the real enemies: blue cheese and olives and the like.

In the restaurant there was at least one fly. We knew this because it kept flying around the small plate with the corn muffin and the ranch dressing. We were sitting in a booth, facing each other. Some couples like to sit beside each other but I like to look at Pam. The small plate was at the end of the table where the server had placed it. In an effort to protect her salad dressing from the fly, Pam took the plate and put on her other side, by the wall.

The fly started to zig and zag its way over to the plate’s new location.

Since Pam didn’t want the muffin anyway, I took the muffin and put it on the edge of the table and left the ranch dressing to the other side of Pam. This had the desired effect. The fly was setting up shop on the corn muffin and left Pam’s ranch dressing unmolested.

Some time after this, our server came by. She noticed the fly on the corn muffin. Instead of falling to the floor weeping in shame (big, wracking sobs – we’d have been embarrassed for her) she made some halfhearted waves at the fly to shift it. Pam told her not to bother since Pam didn’t want the muffin anyway.

On hearing this, the server said that she’d take the muffin away.

“No!” said Pam. “We’re using the muffin to distract the fly from the salad dressing.”

The server laughed a big booming laugh that shook the building and left us alone. The fly kept the muffin company for the rest of our meal but otherwise left us alone, too.

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