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March 11, 2009

Can I have one?

March 11. Day 254.

I can't believe just did this. Even I am shocked. But desperate times call for....

The day flew by and I asked for nothing. I spent a few hours in my new favorite haunt, a Starbucks with free parking and crappy wifi conveniently located next to a Trader Joes. A one stop shop.

But, nothing needed or wanted there, so I kept my mouth shut.

Around 7, Mr. A called from work, suggested we go out for dinner. Great! Besides seeing him -- which is the only reason I said yes, I swear -- I'd have the added opportunity to identify a need or want, and ask for something.

We went for Thai food, and then we decided to switch places for dessert. We ended up at IHOP. I still hadn't asked.

We ordered -- two fried cheesecakes with bananas, strawberries and caramel sauce -- and still, nothing.

At a certain point as we waited for our desserts, I don't know what motivated me to do this, but I turned around and glanced at the booth behind me. There was a woman, a woman with long black hair, waiting for her date to come back from the bathroom. This woman had just received a basket of mixed appetizers and a few entrees. Appetizing appetizers. And then, before it was too late, before whatever accursed boldness melted away like the butter on her pancakes... I asked.

"At the risk of sounding very rude or strange, could I please try an onion ring?"

She froze. I froze.

"I'm just curious how they are," I added, as if that could make the supreme discomfort shared by both of us somehow fritter away.

She daintily reached for the one sitting on top of the pile and handed it to me. Much easier than arguing with the crazy lady.

"Thank you," I replied, and smiled. She turned back to her food. Her hubby came back and they spoke in hushed tones in a foreign language.

Not the reaction I was hoping for. Maybe a laugh, a "Sure, they're totally addictive!" or "Only if you trade me for a bite of your dessert, hardy har!" Instead, I think she thought I was very odd indeed, or making fun of her.

Once again, tested the limits of propriety and social decorum. Sank where I never thought I'd sink before. Mortified myself, my dinner companion, and an innocent diner. But gained: a yummy onion ring!

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