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December 13, 2008

Happy Hour price on a Saturday?

December 13. Day 166.

Mr. A and I made a date to talk about my career post grad... San Diego or another city? Something full-time, corporate, lucrative? Teaching? Something unstructured, creative, exhilarating?

What kind of options does a lit PhD have these days, anyway? And how do they mesh with those of a long-lashed, brown-eyed, curry-concocting, mountaing-scaling, tango-dancing technical type?

All that brainstorming made me hungry, so I scoped out the menu at our outpost, Zanzibar, and noticed a flatbread pizza, which comes with a happy hour price of $6.50 -- Monday through Friday, 4 to 7. Small discount off of the $7.25, but what the hell. It was 7, and I could save a few quarters and strike off my asking for the day.

The waitress said she's not sure they can offer such a discount.

"I don't want to say anything one way or another, but I'll ask."

"Thank you for asking." I made a point of repeating that word. Don't know why.

She came back and, still very congenial, said it was not doable.

Nice waitress. Baaaaaad, Zanzibar.

You don't want encourage riffraff like myself from thinking you're a discount diner? Worried I'll get the word out about this place? Worse, give all my homeless friends the scoop?

"Have you been to Zanzibar?" I might ask my posse in the park.

"The capital of Tanzania?" one chick might reply (its beach is pictured).

"No silly, the cafe. They gave me a sweet discount last night. 75 cents off of a flatbread pizza."

"Lovely! Let's all hang out there tonight. We'll occupy the tables at the front of the restaurant and demand that amazing discount, too."

Or maybe, to be less dramatic, it's just policy. That's cool. Free country.

On the flipside, your place was e-m-p-t-ee. One other couple, 30 tables or so... on a Saturday night. All I asked for was a $.75 discount. I think it was a reasonable "shift" -- not a random 20% off a steak, but simply, to apply the happy hour price, at at happy hour time, on a Saturday. You would have gotten $6.50. Two satisfied clients. Perhaps someone who would have liked your food enough to come back and splurge on the salmon.

Gained: Nothing. You and me both, baby.

I don't normally do this, but I'm emailing Zanzibar this link. Is that asking for trouble? As I've said before, I'm treating every word on this site as something the subject might read... And I think they should know one eater's take. Please feel free to reply!
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