Dinner with the Greeks…a familiar place
I walked in to “Hi butty, how ya doin,” and I felt comfortable. The counter was my usual place. It was crowded on Saturday nights. The florescence gave the customers a pale paste. Shadows from above made them glow like white wax, “Wax people,” I thought. They should have their blood checked. I was a medical student.
I had no desire to speak to anyone. I wanted to eat and get back to my study. The boredom of study was interrupted by the dance of the Greeks.
The counter man and the cook were brothers.
“ What chu want, Butty?” as he slapped down a knife, fork, spoon, thin paper napkin and a scratched glass. The counter was plastic. Silver napkin holders dotted its landscape. Cooking hoods matched the silver.
“No hotdugs and bakesz beanz toonite?”
“ Ou-one rusth biff sammich,” he yelled to the brother.
“Smash pudadu,” he barked.
“Make that a roast beef sandwich, mashed potatoes with gravy and a cup of coffee.”
“ O-ke. One rusth biff sammich” with a quick turn of his head.
“One cupsz cuffee” as he whirled turned, pulled the handle, and in one motion, I had my cup.
“Ok, zat it?’
Yes, thank you.’
“O-keh, one rusth biff sammich, one smash pudadu wiz grevy, one cupsz cuffee cumin up.”
For dessert,“Appul pi wid iscz crem.”
I loved the ritual and the lingo. We were proud of his restaurant.
It was good. I felt well, comfortable, at home.
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