Sunday, June 5, 2011

Poisoning the atmosphere

About half an hour into our meal, the music changed.

Chris and I were eating at Applebee's, chosen for its close proximity to our ultimate destination, the movie theater. The restaurant's background music was fairly eclectic, jumping from UB40 to George Thorogood. Every now and again we'd comment on the playlist; largely we ignored it.

All was well until something came on that neither of us quite recognized. Some artist we had never heard before. Someone who ... wasn't very good, actually.

Realization dawned. It was karaoke night.

We did our best to resume the conversation, but we were thwarted at every turn. What the singers lacked in skill, they made up for in volume. Even the ones who weren't half bad managed to be annoying somehow.

We left without ordering dessert.

* * *

The uncomfortable part? As we griped about how we could hardly hear each other, I remembered all the people who have asked Cinder Bridge to turn down over the years. The coffeehouse goers who came to talk to each other and didn't care for live music enhancing the atmosphere.

In our defense, we don't go to these places intending to get in the patrons' faces. If somebody hires us to play, we assume they have a pretty good handle on what their customers like—they don't want people leaving before dessert or those last few cups of coffee. And in our defense, a lot of people at our atmosphere gigs have given positive feedback, left tips, bought CDs, or signed up for our mailing list.

That said, consider this an open apology to all those we've annoyed.


Anonymous said...

And the restaurant right by the theatre at the mall, where we fled to have dessert, also had karaoke going on. However, they also had outside seating, so while the sounds of cats having their tails stepped on was still omnipresent, at least we didn't have to shout to hear each other from three feet away.

Is this a trend in Tucson? Thursday is karaoke night? Or were we just phenominally unlucky in our random choices of eateries? If it's the former, clearly we need to make a note in boldface never to go out to eat on Thursdays.

cinderkeys said...

I know, right? Two places in a row seemed a little unrandom. Other commenters? Is Thursday the designated Time of Karaoke?

Anonymous said...

Thursday and Monday. It's just traditional. Those are the "down" days for bars (especially) and restaurants, and they do it to draw people in. Just like in the midwest, where the busiest day for restaurants is Wednesday. Not Friday or Saturday, like you might think. There are reasons for this, but it is just traditional.

Rhodester said...

Well, you've never annoyed me, but you're forgiven anyway.

MOS said...

The busiest day for restaurants in the Midwest is Wednesday? I have never heard anything like that before, and I have lived in the Midwest (Ohio and Chicago) my entire life. No way. Fridays and Saturdays are absolutely the busiest days. I have always heard that Thursdays are next because people start the weekend early.

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