Wednesday, June 08, 2005

You Know Chow Mein?

I stopped to buy gas on my way home from work today. All I can say is thank God I deposited my paycheck before I bought gas and, thank God again, that I drive a Toyota. Good grief! Across the street from where I bought gas is a Chinese restaurant. I had no intention of buying Chinese food for supper but as I stood there filling my tank, the General Wok sign was begging me to cross the street.

I pulled up to the drive-thru menu and tried to make up my mind. Would it be Orange Chicken? Or, perhaps, Mongolian Beef? How about some House Lo Mein or Garlic Shrimp? When the voice in the speaker asked what I wanted, I said, "Shrimp Chow Mein." I have no idea why I said that.

I do that all the time. I'll go over a menu and change my mind ten times before the waitress takes the order and, more often than not, I even surprise myself at what I order. Then, when the food comes, I'm usually surprised again because I changed my mind so many times during the whole ordering process that I don't even remember what I finally ordered.

There were three cars in front of me so I thought, "At least my food will be ready by the time I get to the window." Alas, it was not meant to be. When I finally got to the window, the Chinese lady inside asked me in very broken English, "You know what Chow Mein?"

I thought she asked, "You no want Chow Mein?"

So, I said, "Yes, I want Chow Mein?"

She said, "You know Chow Mein?"

At this point, I'm getting a little worried. Does their Chow Mein contain sauteed squid's eyes or something? Why would she ask me if I know Chow Mein? So, I said, "Yes, I know Chow Mein."

Not to be deterred, the lady continued, "It got hard noodle...and cabbage..."

I said, "Yeeessss....?"

"Yesterday, a lady order Chow Mein and I give her Chow Mein. She get mad. Said she order Lo Mein. Lo Mein got soft noodle. She so mad."

"Oh," I said, "People can be mean."

"My husband say I have to ask if you know Chow Mein."

"Yes, I know Chow Mein."

It was delicious, by the way. No squid's eyes or anything.


A Wealth of Information from My Fortune Cookie

My fortune: If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.
(That's good because I can't remember anything anyway.)

Lucky numbers: 22, 31, 47, 39, 17, 4
(If you play those numbers and win, I want a cut!)

Learn Chinese: Peng-you = Friend
(Isn't that nice? It doesn't sound like *friend* though, does it? It actually sounds like the opposite of what you would tell your friend: PENG YOU!)


Jen T. (that's me) said...

I no know Chow Mein, but I do know MSG after last week. I'm still nursing scratch marks from that reaction. :(

Comfort Addict said...

And I thought I was the only one with a case of the forgets.

"Peng You" reminds me of an old favorite Chinese restaurant, now deceased, "Foo Wah." I could never quite say it without a little chuckle.

Abby Taylor said...

Oh yeah? Well Peng-YOU, too!

Really funny post.

Deek Deekster said...

i used to do the change-mind thing so often at one point, that i had to force myself to decide what i was going to have before getting to the restaurant. hilarious if you decided on something they didn't actually have: "braised pelican on a bed of roses, please!"

Rik said...

My wife lived in hong Kong for 10 years. I know chow mein baby.

Do you know the fortune cookie game? You're suppsoed to put the two words "in bed" at the end of your fortune. No matter what your fortune says, it's ALWAYS funny...


Heather said...

That's a great story! I'm addicted to Chinese my favorite place there's a waitress with Tourette's Syndrome so you never know what's she's going to do!!

Susan said...

I usually order the same thing. I try to order something different but then I change it to the same old thing. for instance strawberry crepes, I go to the crepe stand and order chocolate, I love chocolate in general, but while they are making the crepe part I start craving strawberry and change the order. Its so bad that if I order a non strawberry one, the places asks me "strawberry?" after they make the crepe part, even if I said something different.

Lorna said...

DRIVE-THRU Chinese? you guys in the US sure have it easy.

Bonnie Ransonette said...

I remember Chow Mein. Wasnt he cousin to those two guys we used to hand around with.

Ty Won On and Won Hung Lo

jlybn123 said...

Funny story! I called for carry-out chinese a few weeks ago from work. I asked the lady if they accept Visa? Her reply..."yes, we accept Wee-za". I was cracking up!

Indigo said...

That's so funny. Now would you have cared if it was lo mein, or chow mein?

Ed Abbey said...

I used to live in a town where they delivered Chinese food and I thought I was in heaven. I used to drop a twenty and get enough cartons to last me the rest of the week.

Sadly I don't live in that town anymore but my wife is from the Philippines which foodwise is similar to Chinese food. We made some General Tso's chicken just a couple weeks ago and Yowsers!

Ed Abbey said...

Wasn't it on Letterman where they were showing a picture of the sign to a Chinese restaurant that went somthing like:

Fu King
Chinese Restaurant

Laurie said...

Jen - Thank God for Benadryl.

Comfort Addict - You aren't the only one who forgets. I was just saying...huh, what, where was I...

Abby - And I thought you were my Peng-You.

Deek - I think braised pelican on a bed of roses should be put on a menu and if someone orders it, they get meatloaf. :)

Rik - If you tell the truth you don't have to remember bed. (I think I got a dud fortune cookie. That's the first time I've done that and it wasn't funny.)

Heather - Whoa! That must make an interesting evening out.

Susan - Live dangerously! Get the chocolate!!

Lorna - We have drive-thru Chinese but very, very few deliver.

Little Sis Bonnie - We used to *hand* around with. Watch it. This is a (sort of) family blog, you know.

Jlybn - Wee-za...that's funny.

Indigo - I wouldn't have noticed until I got home and then I probably would have thought I had ordered Lo Mein. Ummmm....Lo Mein.

Ed - I LOVE General Tso! I've never tried to cook Chinese food myself. Fu-King...hahahahah!

Dick said...

Does that mean if you don't tell the truth, you have to remember everything? That's not a good a deal.

Susan said...

Maybe I need a bit of consistency in my life? like strawberry crepes ;-)

Sylvana said...

**wiping tears away**

Laurie said...

Dick - Yeah, I know I never lie on purpose. I might omit the truth but I don't lie. I guess the real reason has less to do with honesty and more to do with fear of not being able to keep my stories straight.

Susan - How about chocolate AND strawberries...yum!

Sylvana - :) It WAS pretty funny. Poor lady.