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Saturday, August 21

Buffet-iquette

I am in Canandaigua at a gorgeous park/mansion/gardens doing a fine art show. I'll tell more about that tomorrow, but tonight I am still pondering the artists reception.

Everyone kept saying to go to the reception because they "put out quite a spread!"

Where do these terms come from, anyway? Spread? But I digress.

There are exactly 100 artists at this show. Most come with a partner, domestic or otherwise. That's 200. (There is nothing that brings artists together like free food. Except free booze and they had that, too) A few brought their kids and determined that they, also, were entitled to partake of the "spread". So now maybe 220. All the volunteers and staff, of course, were invited to the "spread", so maybe now we are at 275?

When we got to the mansion, most of the people were already sitting on the steps and at tables, eating their share of the spread. Their plates runneth over. It was a buffet. The line just to get a plate was probably 70 people long. And it was tortuous, I tell you. How can a line like this NOT move? After what seemed like hours of shuffling slowly and moving maybe 5 feet, I decided to try to figure it out. And I did.

You know how a highway can bog down just because there is something interesting on the side of the road and people slow to maybe 50 to check it out and that slow ebb and flow of speed ties up traffic for miles? Or when you have to merge lanes and some yahoos insist on driving right up to the merge, making you stop to let them in? As soon as you get in that single lane, off you go and all is well.

It's the yahoos, people. And there were yahoos in the buffet line.

When I see 50 people waiting behind me, I zip through that line, snagging bits of this and that with little thought, just to get out of the way with some food on my plate. Not these folks. No. Grape tomatoes had to be examined. Baby carrots were chosen and discarded. Bits of pineapple were moved about and pondered. And then you get to the part where there were people waiting on you which presents a new set of problems. "what is this?" It's a SANDWICH you nut job. You can even see what's in it because it is cut in sections. Unless you have never before seen turkey, spinach, tomatoes or cheese, grab it and go!

Oh, and the sushi! "Give me that one. No, no, that one. Next to that one. Yes" Here's a clue for ya. Sushi is made in long rolls. All those pieces you're subjecting to the CATscan in your head are the same. Move along!

Oh, and the cheese table, The beautiful cheese table with little cards inscribed with exactly what that cheese is, but is that good enough? Noooo. "Is this hot cheese?" Does the word "jalapeno" ring a bell there, buddy? No, you cannot sample it. This is a buffet. Everything is a sample!

So, I figured it out. Like everything else in life, the yahoos ruin it for everyone. But even they could not ruin this beautiful late Summer night on a rambling veranda in the company of artist friends speaking their own language and stocking up on free food and wine.

Life is good. Slow, but good.

3 comments:

Terry said...

pat,

You don't have any idea how much you and I think alike - traffic and food- line wise.
Emmy Lou would calls me cynical when I make such statements.. t

Louise's Son-in-law said...

We did that same line last year - looks like nobody learned anything from the experience? A great spread once you got there though! Sorry we missed you.

Stefani said...

Hi. I found your website and blog through the Sonnenberg Garden show website after reading such a nice review on Art Fair Insider.

Your work is wonderful!

Now I find out you are irritated by slow moving people too?? AND you know the Olneys??

Hope I get to meet you someday.