A colleague at my place of employment retired a couple of weeks ago. He is a really nice guy and genuinely liked by everyone that has worked with him. After his departure, our specific department held a luncheon to honor him. The luncheon was held at one of the major sit-down chain restaurants in the area.
As we ordered our food and were waiting for its arrival, the retiree went to each table to thank everyone for coming to celebrate his retirement. I sat at a table with four friends including one of my best friends, whom I will appropriately, and naturally, call Buddy. Buddy is one of the most genuine and sweetest guys you will ever meet. He’s as strong as an ox and eats like a horse. Buddy spends a lot of time in the gym working on power lifting techniques and it wouldn’t be inappropriate to label him as “husky.” Buddy also has a sweet tooth – a major sweet tooth. When it comes to cake, Buddy doesn’t have a sweet tooth, but a whole set of sweet teeth. And, what is always served at a party? You got it. Cake!
So, we are finishing our meals and numerous people begin to speak about the retiree and his accomplishments. Gifts are given and tears are shed. Then, it is time for the crowning jewel of the celebration – cake! Not just cake, but ice cream cake! Our table had been served by a waitress but was now being served by a waiter who seemed to be a bit of a comic (at least in his own mind).
The waiter brings each person at our table a piece of the cake. The cake is cut into very small pieces, probably about the size of a tea bag. I don’t eat sweets so I asked Buddy if he would like my cake, much like a good attorney, already knowing the answer to this question. Of course, the answer was “yes!” so I begin to pass my cake to Buddy but the waiter stopped me and jokingly said we could not give away our cake. Since the cake was so small, everyone made short work of it. The waiter then came around for seconds and Buddy took yet another piece, his third. He made short work of that one as well.
The waiter makes one more pass and has three plates stacked in his hands, each baring a piece of cake. He stops suddenly by Buddy, who is now seated to his right, and suddenly blurts out what appears to be, “There is a fat kid sitting next to me!” I immediately did the move where you start to second guess what you heard because you figure there is no way what you perceived what you heard was actually what was said. For about the next three seconds, I am trying to figure out exactly what the waiter DID say but can’t. As I am sitting there confused, Buddy suddenly shouts out, “Did he just say there was a fat kid sitting next to him? We might have to step outside.” Everyone at our table burst out laughing. I then somewhat felt validated that perhaps, I actually did hear what I thought I had heard. The news spread from table to table as we heard laughter erupt like dominos as the story was told. Buddy’s love of cake has become legendary through the department so people were able to clue into the story pretty easily.
But what did the waiter actually say? Did he indeed say this? We found out that he actually did NOT say this! The waitress was teasing him about the number of pieces of cake he was holding and asked if they were all for him. What the waiter actually said was, “There is a fat kid inside of me,” thus apparently referencing his desire to eat the cake. But, I think “There is a fat kid sitting beside me,” makes for a better story, and will likely be told in that manner for many more years to come in our department.