Chairman Bao is a Shih Tzu. We travel a lot. I drive. He watches. We've logged at least 10,000 miles and he's never once said, Sweetheart, don't you think you should stop and ask someone?

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Bao, under the table.

I'd heard about the wonderful calamari salad at Mi Piace on Coronado Avenue in Old Pasadena, so that's where we had lunch yesterday. It was hot and crowded outside, so we were seated in the bar area, which was deserted. We were the only ones there. I sat down on the banquette and Bao curled up next to me.

Suddenly, this huge guy in black with a shaved head descended upon us, brandishing a napkin. "That dog cannot be on the furniture! I can't allow that, not in my place. It's dirty! I have customers! You can't expect people to sit in dirt!"

Bao jumped down. This guy then proceeded to ostentatiously scrub the red vinyl "upholstery" up and down the entire length of the banquette with his napkin. It was a performance worthy of an Oscar. Finally, he went back behind the bar.

He was in the right, of course. But all the other LA restaurants have been so welcoming that Bao -- and I -- got careless. Still, he didn't have to be so nasty. And the minute-long charade of "cleaning" the furnture was unnecessary. I mean, I was the only customer in the room. Anyhow, we'll be more careful in the future.

And I have to tell you, the calamari salad was delicious, the best I've had anywhere. So I'd definitely recommend Mi Piace, and I'd definitely go back. Just not to the bar.


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