Every month, I attend the Pittsburgh New Works board meeting. The group meets to plan our annual festival. Each September, we produce 18 one-act plays with regional theater companies for the six weeks of the festival at the Carnegie Stage (formerly Off the Wall Theatre). It’s a lot of hard work, but it is fun, too.
But I digress, like I do. The board meetings are informal. We’re definitely not suit-and-tie people. I wear jeans and a T-shirt to most meetings. Last Sunday, I showed up in a new pair of shorts. Once I got to the meeting I realized that the shorts were probably too big for me.
Raise your hand if you can see where this is going.
After the meeting, my fellow board member Vernee and I decided to write up some action items at brunch. It was a casual note-taking session that included food and drink. I told you we were an informal bunch. We passed several crowded restaurants on a walk up Penn Avenue. It dawned on me it was Father’s Day when Vernee turned to me and said, “It’s Father’s Day.”
I’m quick like that.
There is a relatively new restaurant called Bakersfield. They serve Mexican food and play rock ’n’ roll music while John Wayne movies run in the background. Why it’s named after a dusty, little desert town in California remains a mystery. It’s a small chain with several locations around the country (none of them are actually in Bakersfield, Calif.). The drinks are strong, and the food is delicious.
I just don’t know if I’ll ever be allowed back in.
Since it was Father’s Day, the restaurant got progressively more crowded as our meeting went on. After guacamole, chips, a margarita and a taco or two, we finished our “meeting.” No, really. I took notes!
We paid the check. I stood up, yawned, stretched and my shorts fell to my sandals. I probably would have gotten away unnoticed, but I decided to blurt out an expletive, which caused people to look up from their burritos and see the man standing in his underwear in the middle of a crowded restaurant. The server, a nice young woman, had heard me utter the expletive and came back to check on me. Then, she noticed my pants were down around my ankles. She covered her mouth, like the creature of the Black Lagoon came ashore and kidnapped her sister. Maybe she covered her mouth to suppress a laugh, but it looked like a face of shock and horror to me.
The good news is I didn’t run away, because I would have tripped on my shorts and fallen in the aisle. No one wants to see me on the ground with my nearly naked butt in the air in a Mexican restaurant, or any restaurant for that matter.
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Mike Buzzelli is a stand up comedian and a sit down author. His book, "Below Average Genius," a collection of humor columns culled from the Observer-Reporter, can be purchased here!