The COVID Dessert Domino Effect

domino effect-2You’re at a fancy restaurant with a big group and the waiter comes to the table to ask if anyone saved room for dessert.

You know how it is … everyone claims they couldn’t possibly eat another bite. 

And then one person says, well, we should at least look at the dessert menu, even if we don’t order anything…

The waiter is at the ready with a stack of menus and distributes them with a knowing smile. They know what’s going to happen next.

One person may order a black coffee while everyone else oohs and yumms and aahs over the selection. Then another hands back the menu declaring they’ll just have a cappuccino, or some other coffee treat to deliver that sugary cap-off to the meal. It’s a tiny crack in the group resolve.

And … then … one person asks if someone wants to share a dessert. Two or three chime in with “sure” they could do that. It’s presented more like a favor to the requester, rather than something they really want to do for themselves. We all know better. The good intentions are starting to crumble.

AND THEN … a spontaneous devil-may-care attitude takes over. All the dominoes collapse. By the time the waiter returns, almost everyone at the table is ordering a dessert, or agreeing to receive an extra utensil to taste some shared deliciousness. We’ll worry about the consequences tomorrow. Today we’re going to have some fun.

There’s always that one original black coffee holdout, who everyone wishes would just leave and not lord over the rest of us with their pious pretensions.

Ever seen that happen?

I feel like we’re all poised at that moment when the waiter arrives with the dessert menu. There are open restaurants on offer, barber shops, hair and nail salons, unlocked malls, State Parks, beaches and more. Yummy! Irresistible! Let’s DO IT.

But wait, I’m still worried about effective social distancing. I’m that person ordering black coffee right now. How long will I be able to keep this up?

I see people around me starting to negotiate and bargain with themselves just like we do with the dessert menu. Just a little taste. I don’t want to miss out on this, or that. And let’s not forget our duty to help resurrect the economy by participating in it again. And OMG the state of my hair or nails!

How long will I remain that person ordering black coffee? The temptations are mounting. I can see a gradually crumbling of resolve. 

One thought on “The COVID Dessert Domino Effect

  1. Rhonda J Sweeney May 9, 2020 / 1:15 pm

    I have friends who only order delivered groceries and are doing all their own cooking for fear of catching the virus in the food. They wipe down all packages with clorox wipes, leave the bags in the garage. They are “insiders” until a vaccine comes along.

    I am in the middle, going out to do my own grocery shopping, picking up takeout at the restaurants, while wearing a mask or bandanna, and wash my hands really well after interacting with the outside world. But I had eye surgery last Monday and followup on Tuesday, with another followup scheduled Monday. Next week picks up – haircut and highlighting, and a mammogram, but a telehealth visit with my primary care doctor. Had a G&T happy hour on our patio last night with good friends, social distancing but no masks — how can you drink and eat with one? Dental visit the following week. I will probably skip the mani/pedi for now and see if I can do that myself for a while.

    But, we are not ready to go back to church, even though it is open, and not into the restaurants either. Drivethru Whataburger is a nice outing. But with this terrific weather, a nice dinner out on a patio is sounding pretty darned appealing, so keep an eye out for us at Tony Mandola’s or Nino’s before it gets hot, hot, hot.


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