super cool handwarmers (and why you should always carry knitting needles when drinking alone)

Monday, January 21, 2013

This past weekend I found myself drinking alone in Phoenix. I was visiting a friend but had an afternoon to myself. So I decided to settle in on the outdoor patio of a Tex-Mex place. After a spell, I spied my waiter. He was on his own, taking care of the entire patio and the beads of sweat along his hairline betrayed his forced cheer.

Harried Sweaty Waiter: "Welcome to [Tex Mex Restaurant in Phoenix]! Is this your first time dining with us?"

Me: "Yes. I'd like the Top Shelf Commemorativo Margarita."

HSW: "I really like the Orange Beso instead."

Me: "Oh."

HSW: "It's got fresh orange juice, Grand Marnier and prickly pear cactus juice."

Me: "No offense, but that sounds gross."

He smiles tightly.

HSW: "The Commemorativo is good too."

Me: "Great. I'll take it. And can I order some food too?"

HSW: "Alright, but I may try to talk you out of it."

I think this is the oddest tactic a waiter could employ, especially one that is so busy he's SWEATING. I guess not too busy to spend time judging a customer's menu selections.

Me: "Wow. Okay. I'll take the blackened chicken caesar salad with avocado."

He squints at me for a beat.

HSW: "Hmmm....that's okay. But the crab enchiladas are better."

Me: "Nope, not really into that. I'll stick with the caesar."

HSW: "If you say so."

I'm glad he approves.

The margarita arrives and despite the fact that it is the size of my head, I spend the next twenty minutes burning off at least half of its calories fighting off scrappy pigeons who keep making a run (fly?) for my chip basket. Brazen little bastards.

Sweaty stops by again to make small talk.

HSW: "So, are you here for the marathon this weekend?"

Me: "Yeah. Me and this margarita are gonna try and beat our best time."

He looks at me, deadpan.

Me: "Just kidding. I'm not here for the marathon. Hey, do you always have trouble with the birds here?"

He pauses and looks like he might lie to me but then concedes.

HSW: "Yeah, we do."

He looks over to the table next to mine where a few of them are conspiring to attack.

HSW: "Huh. Ha Ha! That one looks like he was dipped in oil."

I follow his pointy finger to see a greasy, sickly one attempting to choke down a chip triangle. There is not a more vile thing to behold. I hurry down my salad with my right arm while defending it with my left. After leaving me to fend for myself, he comes back a while later with the check and to set down a small plate.

HSW: "We have a dessert for you, compliments of the chef: white chocolate pecan tamales."

Me: "Oh, thanks. How nice."

HSW: "Here. Let me show you how to eat them. I'm really hungry myself so I'll show you."

No joke. He picks up one of my gift tamales, peels off the husk and pops the chocolate into his mouth.

HSW: "See? Just like that."

I wish I'd had some knitting with me. I'd have brandished a couple needles and poked the pesky birds and the irritating waiter. Both needed to learn some serious boundaries.

Thank God the margarita took the edge off.

Aren't these handwarmers great? I whipped up a couple pairs of these for some presents last Christmas and they were so satisfying to make. And so stinking cute with that little thumb hole. I could hardly stand the cuteness.

BTW, I used this pattern and the same yarn, Classic Elite tweed.


*P.S. A group of pigeons is called a kit. Which sounds helpful or organized or fun, none of which are true about those assholes.


  1. I love the handwarmers... !!! (Do I own those exact ones?) And I love your sweet blog about crankiness, boundaries and assholes. Made me laugh.

    Your visuals are excellent, I was there, eating alone at another table defending my gluten-free, garlic-free, Tex-Mex food. LOL. Love ya, Jolie. Keep writing. Please.

  2. Really some people should not be in customer service. These people are mostly asshats.

    Cute handwarmers. my gramma-inlaw has just requested a pair so i'm about to start researching patterns.
    I figure I'll never regret having knitting in my bag, (except if maybe my bag is stolen) but i'll always regret it if i'm stuck somewhere without knitting.

  3. Do you think Sweaty's met Panera Guy? Seriously, I can't even...he ATE YOUR TAMALE?!?

    Also: Yep, the handwarmers are great. I'm a fan of the fingerless glove genre. And they're so satisfyingly fast to knit! Love the yarn too--it knits up beautifully.

    1. I think it would be the Best Possible Karma if Sweaty and Panera Guy got together:) Ha Ha!

  4. haha, totally made me laugh out loud. and YES, these handwarmers are so cute! love those colors!

  5. LOL- I can't believe you came to my city and experienced that! Can't say it's not the norm, people here are nutty. Me and a friend were at a stop light when we witnessed a girl at a bus stop drinking a Thirstbuster then leaning over and puked, then continued drinking her Thirstbuster. It happens.
    Love your handwarmers, great knit. :)

    1. That is the best/most awful story ever! I so wish I could've seen it and yet I'm so glad I didn't:) xo

  6. Thats was a entertaining little story, you must have grate self-control, or were you writing the blog post in your head while the waiter did his thing? :)


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