Pancakes bigger than your head. Or what’s wrong with America.

20 May

Last week I met some friends for breakfast. I had to take BigHugs with me because my regular sitter was going to the breakfast too. Why she didn’t offer to stay home and watch my kid so I could dine in peace, I just don’t know. I got BigHugs all psyched up for the restaurant trip with a promise of pancakes. Pancakes are one of the few things that BigHugs with actually eat. On occasion.

Incidentally, I had to stop at the school on the way to give DynaGirl her glasses—she had forgotten them again. The last time she had forgotten them we were at the bus stop and I thought there was a reasonable chance I could run back to the house and get them and be back before the bus got there. So I handed off BigHugs to my neighbor and ran home. Ran. Like all the way. Holy cow. If I ever had any doubt that I could use a little cardio…I stumbled around the house panting heavily and trying not to pass out while I looked for her glasses. I finally found them and then ran back to the bus stop. I was wrecked for the rest of the day. So this time when DynaGirl told me at the bus stop that she had forgotten her glasses I said, “Dude, I can’t run all the way back home again. I”ll never make it.  I’ll just have to bring them to you at school.” So I did, but as we pulled into the school parking lot BigHugs said, “Hey! This isn’t the estwant—this is a school!” She thought I was trying to pull a fast one on her, but I reassured her it was just a quick stop on the way.

So back at the restaurant I perused the menu and decided on the Denver omelette for myself with the sourdough toast (mmm…sourdough) and then tried to find some pancakes for BigHugs. I had been to this restaurant once before and my friend had ordered some eggs with a side of pancakes. These pancakes were like the size of my head. Nay, bigger than my head (and I have a healthy sized noggin!) They were a foot in diameter if they were an inch.  My friend got about a third of the way through hers before she decided she really needed to just. stop. eating.  So she heavily sprinkled pepper over the remaining portion to ensure that she would.  I thought that was an interesting strategy.

So I knew I did not want a “side” of pancakes, but I couldn’t see a kid’s menu anywhere. I asked the waitress, “Do you have a kid’s menu?” She said that they did, and I told her I really just wanted a kid’s size pancake and could I just order that on the side with my breakfast? Then she said, “Well, the kid’s pancakes are the same size as the regular pancakes.” What? What?! What child is going to eat a 1 lb pancake?

I had promised BigHugs the pancake, so the pancake she got. I think she ate about 1/20th of it. I was thinking, couldn’t the “chef” have just made me a smaller pancake? How hard would that be? You just pour less batter, right? I would have been totally willing to go back there and say “when”. I really thought it was strange that it was impossible for them to give me a normal human sized pancake.

I have two beefs from this experience.  1)  Nobody uses common sense these days and everyone is so inflexible—like the world will end if you deviate from your set protocal of pancake portioning.  I just want a smaller pancake, is that so wrong?  Or hard?  Just make it smaller!  I’ll even pay the same amount, if that’s what you’re worried about.  And 2)  Why the freak does anyone need to be eating this much food?  I’m sorry, but no adult needs to be eating platter-sized pancakes, let alone a child. 

And we wonder why America is so fat.


18 Responses to “Pancakes bigger than your head. Or what’s wrong with America.”

  1. Jamie J May 20, 2008 at 10:03 am #

    Seriously. Portions are WAY too big these days and like you said what kid is going to eat that huge pancake??. I’ve had some good luck with restaurants being flexible lately. Rachel likes bean and cheese tacos from the Mexican restaurants and usually they comply. It’s very nice and refreshing!

  2. cheryl May 20, 2008 at 10:05 am #

    Amen! Amen! AMEN!!!

    I hate restaurants for this very reason. Actually, it’s kind of the only reason. I actually like restaurants. I’m all about being waited on and not having to do dishes. Anyway, here’s our problem. Waiters/waitresses give hubby and I dirty looks when we make them take the bread basket away, or when we ask for dressing on the side. And heave forbid we share an entree! How does this hurt them? When they serve us the way we want, they get a big fat tip. Why be haters?

    Next time, you should say: “Please bring me a pancake this size (holding up your hands to show her) and if you bring it too big, I won’t pay for it.” Ooh! That would work. Maybe.

  3. madhousewife May 20, 2008 at 12:48 pm #

    Mmmm. Pancakes.

    I’m sorry, did you say something?

  4. qsysue May 20, 2008 at 12:49 pm #

    It is ridiculous. And somehow it always seems like the breakfast portions at restaurants are worse than the other meals.

    There’s a restaurant down the street we used to go to all the time, yummy mom and pop type place. They’re cheap but give you huge portions. Daniel will order a chicken salad that could feed four people. (Then he’ll take the extra home and eat it later). The only thing they serve that isn’t huge is this burrito. I usually get it because it’s small enough for me. But it looks so forlorn and lonely on its giant plate.

  5. bythelbs May 20, 2008 at 1:01 pm #

    Jamie—I actually specially request things all the time when I’m with my allergy-stricken children. Most places are really good about accommodating us.

    Cheryl—While I still don’t understand the whole sending the bread basket away thing, Chuck and I will sometimes share a meal. Although, that’s usually because we’re at Red Robin and we want onion rings and shakes, so we split a burger in order to leave room for all the other crap. But still. They’ll even cut the burger in half for us. 🙂

    madhousewife—The pancake was tasty. I had a bite. And then I sprinkled pepper all over it. Not really.

    Susan—I really wish there were more places that would trim down the meal size or offer half portions. I like leftovers, but usually I end up eating too much in the first sitting anyway because it just tastes so good. And if it doesn’t taste good enough for me to want to keep eating it then why am I eating it at all? 🙂

  6. Amanda D May 20, 2008 at 1:13 pm #

    I will never forget when I went to a restaurant and ordered the chicken and rice off of their menu. When they brought it to me it was a WHOLE chicken. Bigger than one of those rotisserie chicken even. I just about passed out.

    At the local Dairy Queen when I order an ice-cream cone for my youngest (2), I ALWAYS ask them to make it small. They just can’t do it. And he can’t finish it. And it makes a mess. And it really bugs me. Just make it half the size, all ready! I’ll still pay you the .99. Sheesh. Sorry. Thanks for letting me vent!

    I found you through Cheryl, by the way.

  7. bythelbs May 20, 2008 at 5:49 pm #

    Amanda—a WHOLE chicken?! Crazy! I think restaurant workers are just on automatic pilot (I imagine that is especially true with fast food), so any “off-menu size” requests must not compute. Feel free to come and vent anytime!

  8. Boquinha May 20, 2008 at 6:47 pm #

    Hilarious. I love “venting” posts. I keep hearing a Scottish accent as I read this, though, “Heed! Give me yur panckek! Now!”:P

  9. bythelbs May 20, 2008 at 6:57 pm #

    Boquinha—That’s totally what I was thinking! I almost said “heed!” but wasn’t sure if anyone would get it. That’s hilarious!

  10. Julie May 20, 2008 at 7:25 pm #

    That pancake had it’s own weather system, huh?!

    My chitlens love pancakes so much, though, that I can almost guarantee they’d each eat an entire one. And you wonder why we’re so fat…

    Cheryl, I go to restaurants so I can cheat cheat cheat. And the bread basket is my friend. My best friend.

    And I should try that pepper trick — it’s quite ingenious.

  11. Alison Wonderland May 20, 2008 at 8:54 pm #

    ingenious but evil. I think I would cry if I rendered yummy food that someone else cooked inedible.

  12. madhousewife May 20, 2008 at 11:23 pm #

    I’m with Alison on the pepper thing. It would make me sick to watch someone else do that. I could never do it myself.

  13. cheryl May 21, 2008 at 10:24 am #

    People, I didn’t lose 40 pounds by lovin’ the bread.

    I’m just sayin’.


  14. Boquinha May 21, 2008 at 10:34 am #

    Yeah, I couldn’t do the pepper thing either. Mmmmm, I’m all about doggy bags. 🙂

  15. bythelbs May 21, 2008 at 10:46 am #

    I’m a doggy bag person, too, but you wouldn’t take a pancake home, would you?

  16. Boquinha May 21, 2008 at 1:18 pm #

    Heheheheh, that one’s so getting answered on our blog . . . 😛

  17. patience May 23, 2008 at 3:22 pm #

    I think the pepper strategy is brilliant. I know, it’s a shame to waste good food, but some people (like me) can’t resist cleaning their plates, even when they’re not hungry anymore.


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