She’s A Tikka Time Bomb  

, , | Right | October 3, 2019

(I am a waiter at a South Indian restaurant in the USA. When most westerners think of Indian culture or food, they think of North Indian culture. However, North and South Indian cultures have little to nothing in common. Our languages come not only from different language groups but entirely different language families. We wear different clothes, speak very different languages, watch different movies, listen to different music styles, have different values, and most importantly have drastically different cuisines. We do offer North Indian cuisine because non-Indians — near all Indians would expect a South Indian restaurant to serve South Indian cuisine — show up expecting naan and tandoori food or whatever, but we also inform them that our North Indian food won’t be of good quality and advise them to try our cuisine, instead. This generally works out well. However, sometimes there are interesting scenes caused by this. This time, a family of a mother, father and two young daughters are seated.)

Wife: “Do you have chicken tikka masala?”

Me: “Yes, we do, ma’am. However, that is from a different Indian cuisine from what this restaurant offers. Our chefs are not from that region of India, so the quality of those North Indian dishes will be poor.”

Husband: “Different Indian cuisine? That sounds interesting. What do you recommend?”

Me: “I would suggest the veg thali, sir. You will get a little bit of almost everything except Dosa. You get idli, which is like a rice cake, and vada, which is like a fried rice savory donut, and some chutneys, along with charu which is like a spicy tomato soup, pulusu which is like a sour stew, avakaya which is a spicy pickled raw mango, rice, pappad which is like a fried rice disk, and dessert. It will really be like nothing you’ve ever–“

Wife: “How dare you?!”

Me: “Sorry?”

Wife: “How dare you fake being Indian?! You’re probably just saying that because your chefs are bad! I demand chicken tikka masala be served to me in this restaurant.”

Me: “Yes, ma’am, you certainly are allowed to order it; we do make it. I just am supposed to let you know that it—”

Wife: “I demand to speak to a manager!”

Me: “The manager is right there.”

Manager: “What is the problem, ah?”

Wife: “Why don’t you make better chicken tikka masala?”

Manager: “Because our chefs don’t have experience making that type of food. You are still welcome to order it if you wish.”

Wife: “NO! I demand a refund!”

Manager: “I am not giving you money back which you haven’t paid us. You didn’t order anything yet; there is no refund.”

Wife: “I’m gonna sue—”

Husband: “Take the keys and go get Mexican food or something. The girls and I are gonna try this new cuisine. I’ll take one veg thali, and what do you recommend for the kids?”

Wife: “I’m gonna have tacos for dinner, and it’s your fault!”

(She pointed dramatically at us before leaving in anger.)

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