Lots of Ribbing, Redux

I posted this blog in the midst of the COVID-19 quarantine, on June 30, 2020. It’s amazing that we’re still talking about this virus. But it’s so much better now, isn’t it? Enjoy this reprint.

Last night, Bill and I decided to watch an old favorite movie — Back to the Future. As most of you know, unless you were born after 1995 or have lived in a cave below the earth for the past 30 years, Back to the Future is the movie in which Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) time travels backwards to 1955 from 1985.

As an aside, 1985 was a banner year for having advertising built into a movie. I saw more cans of Diet Pepsi and Budweiser, signs for Texaco, and other brands that allegedly would make us go out to the lobby to buy a can of Pepsi and stop at Texaco on the way home. It must not have worked that great, because you don’t see it anymore.

Anyhoo, the movie is terrific, even though we know exactly what’s going to happen during the entire movie. Michael J. Fox is awesome, and Lea Thompson (who plays his mother, both as an adult and as a teenager), is funny as heck. And speaking of funny, it is comical to see what passed as fancy dancy technology back in 1985.

We made our movie choice before deciding what to do for dinner. I had planned on cooking, but for a number of reasons, that didn’t pan out. Plus, I had been reading on Next Door that many neighborhood restaurants are closing their doors for good. Thanks COVID-19. So we elected to do our part and order food to eat while we watched the movie. Here was our order from a nearby barbecue place called Burnt Ends: Bill – two meat special (burnt ends and hot links) with baked beans and cole slaw; Kris – one meat special (1/2 rack ribs) with baked beans and tomato/cucumber salad. They don’t deliver, but it isn’t far, so we decided to order online and run over and pick it up. I did the online ordering.

Bill ran in to get the food, and came out very quickly with a bag. We drove home, opened the bag, and here’s what we got: an entire rack of ribs, a basket of burnt ends, an order of potato salad, and an order of macaroni and cheese. Hmmmm.

I wasn’t about to go back, but I also was interested to see if they owed me money. So I called.

Good evening, Burnt Ends, how may I help you? the young woman answered the phone.

We just came and picked up an order, and it’s all wrong, I said.

What’s your name? she asked me.

McLain, I told her.

Ah ha, she said.

It so happens that when Bill said our name, she thought he said McCallen. In fact, there was an order for McCallen, which she gave him. The sad news is that Mr. McCallen came just as we left to pick up his order. He probably was dreaming of the barbecued rib rack and the macaroni and cheese that, unbeknownst to him, was driving past him.

How does this tie in to Back to the Future? Apparently my brain is still in 1985, because while I typed in the order, I apparently didn’t hit GO. The really sad thing is that it never occurred to me that I didn’t get any kind of confirmation. That makes sense because I have only ordered food online about a million times since quarantine began in March.

By the way, when the pleasant young woman from Burnt Ends and I figured out what happened, she very generously took the blame. No charge, she insisted. Knowing full well that the error was on my part, I conversely insisted on paying for the food that we were about to eat. Our compromise was that I payed for the rack of ribs. Smokin’ deal on my end. No pun intended.

There is a moral to this ridiculous story: Kids, don’t have a glass of whiskey before ordering food online.

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