The Other Brown Meat

Story Sent in by Cecil:

Betty and I were walking around a downtown area when she asked me if I wanted lunch. I did, and she asked if we could go to a Chinese place nearby that she really liked.

When we walked through the hole-in-the-wall's front door, a cloud rushed into our faces. It was a cloud of flies. After waving my arms around like a madman and swatting flies away from my mouth, I turned to Betty and said, "Someplace else?"

Betty looked at me as if I was turning down free food at a five-star restaurant. "What's wrong?" she asked.

"The flies, and..." the unmistakable smell of curry and body odor wafted into my nostrils. I held my breath. "There's no way I'm eating here."

She said, "It's just the smell of the food. It's really good. Come on."

"You don't smell that?"

"It's just the food. Come on."

Against my better judgment, I sat down with her in the empty restaurant, thinking that I'd just eat something light, like a salad or steamed vegetables.

A waitress, who looked to be no older than 10, came to our table and asked us if we wanted milk. Betty asked for a water, but I didn't ask for anything. Without even placing an order, the waitress arrived at our table, several minutes later, with Betty's water and two plates of unidentifiable meat in a soup of brown sauce.

Betty dug right in. I said, "We didn't order this."

She replied, "So? Don't look a gift horse in the mouth." She slurped up the sludge. I sniffed at it and decided that I'd be better off eating mud.

The waitress came back and asked me if I didn't like the food. I said, "I'm not hungry," and she took it away.

Betty polished off her mystery meal, and when the check came, she paid for it.

After we left the place, Betty complained of a sour stomach. I mentioned to her my belief that the food in that restaurant (if food it was) may not have been as well-prepared as it should have been. She croaked in agreement, and then we found a public bathroom for her.

She was in there for a good, long while. When she came out, she was green. I offered to take her home and put her to bed, which I did. We never went out again, and I sure as hell won't bring any of my future dates to that place. As of this writing, it's still there.


  1. I was sort of hoping that you'd name this place, but I suppose that given your description, it wouldn't take more than a handful of brain cells to decide to eat somewhere else.

  2. I once took my ex to a Chinese place [I like Chinese food, but I don't love it, and I think Chinese food in the US is probably as Chinese as French Fries are French] for the lunch buffet. We had to prepay, and I thought it was cool that they had a cricket perched on the cash register. Except... not a cricket. I pointed to the critter and told the lady "there's a roach on your register". She looked at the roach, then back at me as if to suggest what's the big deal, it's the family pet. I recall capitulating to my ex's hatred of confrontation and agreeing to eat there. Better to see a roach on a register than in your food. Luckily, we didn't turn green.

    1. If you actually see a roach...guaranteed there is an infestation of them in the back kitchen.
      While you may not have seen one in whole in your food...you probably enjoyed roach pieces; mouse droppings and other various bug parts in your moo-goo-gai-pan.

  3. There's some perfectly good Chinese food in the US. I work with a number of people who were born in China, and there are two restaurants within 10 minutes of my office that they consider authentic.. The really authentic ones offer things like pig stomach, frog, etc. :) And authentic Szechwan is very very spicy..

  4. Was it just me or did OP seem like the bad date?


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