It seems inevitable that on some days you will go over completely to the dark side. Last Saturday was such a day. My wife and I started off with a shopping trip to IKEA, the place we love to hate but always find ourselves returning to. Our daughter needed a bed, and being the cheapskates we are we loathed the prospect of spending much on it. We’re completely baffled by our consistent return to IKEA for more cheap furniture. It’s a sickness, like returning time and again to some abusive relationship. But that’s a story for another time.
After IKEA we asked ourselves, “Now what?” We still had plenty of time on the babysitter meter, so we looked up some movie show times and found ourselves gravitating toward Pacific Place, which is one of those upscale vertical malls found in most major cities these days. The number one feature of Pacific Place is the cheap underground parking, $5 for the whole evening. Even if I’m not shopping, eating, or movie-going there, I like to park at Pacific Place because it’s within walking distance of everything downtown. (Did I mention it’s cheap?) This time around we were going to a movie, In Her Shoes, a movie I knew nothing about but my wife wanted to see. It was surprisingly good. But I digress.
So we had a good 90 minutes to kill before show time and we were hungry, so hungry we couldn’t think of a single place where we wanted to eat and weren’t even sure what kind of food we wanted. Pacific Place has never been an eating destination for us but there we were, and there, a mere 50 yards from the theaters, was Gordon Biersch. I had mocked the place since the first time I saw it. The corporate brewpub invader from California. Give me a break! How could such a place even exist in Seattle? It was an affront. I felt certain I would never ever eat nor drink there. How wrong I was.
When your mind is tired and your belly empty and your wallet full of money, resistance seems not only futile but stupid. So in we went. Within moments we were seated in a huge comfy booth with a grand view of 7th Ave and Pine St. The complementary beer tasting came first. Soon thereafter came two very cold seasonal lagers and a plate of Brie and pear. Entres of Mahi Mahi and salmon salad followed. No room for desert. The service was attentive if a bit over-the-top (the waiter’s eyebrows danced like fireflies and the hostess seemed far too interested in our weekend activities.) The tab was a reasonable $60, tax and tip included.
In a way I feel used. Our afternoon and evening in the land of Corporate America was masterfully choreographed to make us feel free and easy. We escaped into a make-believe world where shopping is entertainment, eating is theater, and the movies are what real life could be like. And it was all fake. But I have to admit that fake can sometimes be fun. Phony can be funny. And I like to have fun wherever and however I can.
over 7 years ago