(can you picture me, sheepish, as I type?)
Because I’m feeling plenty sheepish. Let me describe for you a scene that took place at my house yesterday morning:
I’m sitting in my kitchen with my kids, my coffee, and our houseguest. We’re doing our normal breakfast thing: once the kids are settled with food enough to keep them happy for a good 15 minutes (granted, my husband usually does this), I fix my coffee and sit down to check email. I notice that the “google” logo now reads “topeka.” I ask Tim, “Hey — what’s up with the google logo?” and neither of us think hard or care enough to figure it out. About 10 minutes later, I come across a tweet linking to an article about how boring this year’s google hoax is. Then I realize. It’s April 1.
An hour later, my older two kids are outside playing, and the Wee One is in her high chair. I sit at the screen door, computer in lap, and realize I don’t have much to post about. So why not go the way of google, and bore everyone to tears with my version of an April Fool’s hoax. I try for a moment to think of some crazy recipe to push on everyone, but then realize that would take too much brain power, and I wasn’t sure everyone would get the joke (what if someone actually believed me, and tried to make a junk recipe?). So then I decide: Tim and I opening a restaurant. That‘s one that’s believable for just an instant, but the Aha! moment would quickly follow, because the idea is THAT INSANE.
To me, it really is. But, apparently, not to many really great people who choose, on occasion — despite that gnawing feeling that it will probably somehow shorten their life span — to read this blog. I can only attribute this phenomenon to two possible causes:
- Really nice and encouraging people read this blog. I’m still not quite sure how I managed that — since playing an April Fool’s joke about food is just not nice.
- The people of Indianapolis — this city on the cusp of great things — really are ripe for better food options. And this is an encouragement to me. Not enough of one to go and start a restaurant, but a big one nonetheless.
So, all I can offer is a giant, electronic apology. In our house, when someone apologizes, we have to look them in the eye. And in return, the offended person must acknowledge forgiveness was granted. I can’t do that with all of you, so instead, I have a small peace offering.
I will never open a restaurant. But what I do, really, want to do — and am working on this very week — is start an underground supper club in Indianapolis. I have a few friends — well-connected, as they say — who are also interested in this type of venture. This idea was born from our experience at a similar dinner club in Athens, and was underscored recently by this article in NYT. These clubs offer talented chefs an opportunity to experiment in ways they might not feel free to do in their own restaurants. It offers a chance for patrons to mix and mingle with those creative minds, and share a dinner table with people they’ve never met. It gives those of us with somewhat limited means an opportunity to have really good wine and beer paired appropriately with seasonal, adventurous dishes — an experience that is truly a luxury.
I’m in the earliest stages of conversations, and this will probably be something that takes much longer than you’d think to pull off — if I ever manage it at all. But we’re gonna try.
Perhaps, for no other reason than to protect my family from an angry mob of 8-10 people.
Maybe I should’ve said we were going to name the restaurant “Topeka?”
(BTW — hats off to Rebecca, who was on to me the whole time. Or at least she was the only one who voiced as much in the comments.)