“Waiter!” Mr. Krankowitz barked. “Bring me fish and chips. Lots of it!”
Mr. Krankowitz seemed as grumpy as ever on the outside. Secretly, however, he was rather excited. He’d saved up enough coupons for a free meal at a fancy new restaurant!
Mr. Krankowitz couldn’t remember the last time he’d been to a restaurant, fancy or not. And this restaurant promised to be something special.
On Sunday evening, Mr. Krankowitz dressed in a coat, hat, scarf and gloves. He tap-tapped along with his cane up Sunny Lane, toward L’élégant Restaurant.
The entrance was very fancy. Mr. Krankowitz marched inside. Right away a waiter was at his side. “Good evening, sir. Please take a seat, sir. Let me take your coat, sir.”
Mr. Krankowitz nodded. He approved. He removed his coat, hat, scarf, and gloves, and handed them to the waiter. The waiter led him to a table for one, and handed him a menu.
Mr. Krankowitz didn’t bother looking at the menu. He knew exactly what he wanted. Fish and chips! As a young man he’d often passed fish and chips shops. He had eyed the large portions, but could never afford to buy it. Well, now it was his turn. He planned to make the most of it.
“Waiter!” he barked. “Bring me fish and chips. Lots of it!”
The waiter looked a little worried.
“Er — can you show me exactly what you mean?” he asked. He pointed at the menu.
“What do you mean ‘what do I mean’?” said Mr. Krankowitz. He was annoyed. “What’s so hard to understand?”
The waiter pointed to the fish section of the menu. Mr. Krankowitz stared at it. Why, it was complete gobbledygook! What on earth was Trio de Poissons Grillés? Or Saumon en Papillote?
And where were the chips?
“Look here,” he said. “I don’t understand this menu. Just get me a nice piece of fried fish, will you? And pile on the chips!”
The nervous waiter eyed the old man.
“Um… I’m afraid we don’t offer chips, sir. I can offer you potato croquettes. Or Potatoes Boulangeres with Rosemary or—”
Mr. Krankowitz snorted.
“Rosemary shmosemary. Can’t a fellow get a decent meal here?”
Hearing the old man’s shouts, the chef came out of the kitchen. He wanted to see what was going on.
“This gentleman, er, has concerns about our menu,” said the waiter.
The chef, French and quick-tempered, scowled at the old man. “This is zee best menu in Britain! French dishes par excellence! What is zee problem?”
Mr. Krankowitz glared back at him.
“I want fish and chips! I don’t care about your French dishes.”
The chef’s face turned purple.
“Don’t care about zee French dishes?” he roared. “I am famous chef. My Poisson Parisien is superb! My gefeelte feesh Francais is oh la la!”
The other diners all turned to see what the yelling was about.
(Excerpted from Mishpacha Jr., Issue 788)
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