15 July 2013

"'Cause I want it that way" --Backstreet Boys

I was on the road last week.  At home, I know what I can eat and where in order to manage my post-Insanity weight (yes, I finished it!  9 weeks of intense workouts.  Can you believe it?*)  But here I was--out of town; away from the usual haunts.  I saw an Applebee's and remembered the recent TV commercials touting their new menu.  So, I stopped in for a salad.  Here were my choices under the section labeled SALADS:

  1. Fiesta Chicken Chopped Salad
  2. Seasonal Berry and Spinach Salad
  3. California Shrimp Salad
  4. Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad
  5. Oriental Chicken Salad
  6. Fried Chicken Salad
Long-time readers will no doubt remember I'm a pain in the ass pescatarian. I eat fish and seafood but I don't eat meat.  Meat includes chicken.  There goes numbers 1, 4, 5, and 6. 

Okay, so that leaves 2 & 3, not so bad.  Both titles sound promising.  I read the descriptions for them. 

The Seasonal Berry and Spinach Salad has "Grilled Chicken Breast" as its third ingredient.  You know, for those people that want chicken in their salad but don't want it in their salad title.**


What's this?  The California Shrimp Salad has no chicken!  Huzzah!!!!!  A salad without chicken!!!!

However, the third ingredient in the California Shrimp Salad is "Crumbled Bacon".

That's right.  Every single Applebee's salad comes with meat.  By default.  Because nothing says 'salad' like meat!

I ordered the California Shrimp Salad.  Without the bacon.  Without the avocado.  With the dressing on the side.***  And, to their credit, they brought the salad quickly and exactly as ordered.  I tipped well.

Question du jour:  Will you risk being perceived as a pain in the ass high maintenance to get food the way you really want it or do you figure you'll just get it as written?

* Well, you don't have to be that surprised.  I have been known to finish exer... um, there was that once I... er... I see your point.

** Whaaaa...?

Sally Albright: But I'd like the pie heated and I don't want the ice cream on top, I want it on the side, and I'd like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it, if not then no ice cream just whipped cream but only if it's real; if it's out of the can then nothing.
Waitress: Not even the pie?
Sally Albright: No, I want the pie, but then not heated.


The Bug said...

I'm usually pretty low maintenance - I mean, actual chef's created these dishes, so they know what they're doing, right? Ha!

However, if there is something I don't like in an otherwise delicious item I will tell them to hold the whatever. And in your case I think it would be perfectly fine to order the Oriental Chicken Salad with shrimp instead of chicken.

The Bug said...

P.S. That's one of my favorite movie scenes - & I have friends just like her - I always hide behind the menu while they're ordering :)

Mike said...

Everything goes better with bacon.

Sherri O said...

I hadn't paid that much attention before to the offerings - I just assumed there would be a "vegetarian" salad offering...I guess now I know!

I'm just glad they could customize your salad; some places don't - which drives me insane, and insures that I won't go back to those places!

pureklass said...

Oh man... I have been through this "salad" experience, and just reading about it gave me a touch of The Rage. I'm a full-on vegetarian, and Applebee's is one of those places where there is exactly one thing I can order. Because they have to acknowledge that people don't eat meat, but they don't have to like it? I don't know.

But asking for a salad without bacon is really, seriously not high maintenance. Seriously.

asplenia said...

I basically turn into Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally and spout off (politely, of course) my customized request for 5 minutes. It's worth it!

AbbotOfUnreason said...

Did I miss a post where you talked about whether the insanity worked/was worth it?

I think it's important to be as high maintenance as possible, just to make sure people really mean it when they say they like me.

Sean said...

It doesn't make sense that there are no vegetarian salad options. I had really bad service the last time I went to Applebees, so I'm not going there for a while. Of course, the lack of meatless salad options has no impact on this decision.

Tania said...

As a Canadian, I take my food as it comes. However, fortunately as a Canadian, I never have to encounter Applebees.

David Oliver said...

I had never heard of a pescatarian. Neither has blogger comments. It said I misspelled it. Maybe I did. Anyway you know what I mean.

I always thought a salad meant just green stuff and dressing. Now I guess it means a sandwich without the bun.

GreenCanary said...

I pretty much take my food as it comes, but based on the size of my thighs I'm thinking I should change that.

lacochran's evil twin said...

The Bug: Thanks for weighing in. Do the friends *know* they are Sally Albright?

Mike: Well, Spam certainly does.

Sherri: You're right. At least I got what I wanted.

pureklass: One item? It's not cauliflower is it? *makes face*

asplenia: Hence, footnote 3. Glad we are kindred spirits!

AbbottofUnreason: It definitely made me more flexible and increased my endurance. Somehow or another I didn't get the chiseled bod in the commercials. Huh. Oh, and I knew there was a reason I liked you.

Sean: Right?! I'm obviously not their target demographic. It's one thing if I walked into Chicken!Chicken!Chicken! and demanded, um, not chicken.

Tania: I've heard about that poutine thing. Hm.

David Oliver: It certainly seems to be liberally interpreted.

GreenCanary: Nothing wrong with being shapely. Curves are back! (At least, that's what I keep telling myself!)