For the last few years, my dad and I have been having semi-weekly daddy/daughter lunches at a local restaurant of his choosing, since he pays. The man has this great cackling laugh that you can hear a mile away. If you are in the building, you know he’s present by this laugh and I get to hear it at these lunches a lot. My dad is surprisingly supportive of my marital status for a Southern father of a single 25-year-old girl. I think part of it is that he got married and had children young himself and he’s glad I’m enjoying my youth and building a career. Mostly, I think it was hard enough for him to watch his baby girl struggle through a hellish marriage once and he’d prefer she choose more carefully the next time, so he doesn’t end up in prison.
Still, my brother Bo has made it clear that my uterus is going to start to smell if I don’t use it soon, so I feel the need to reassure my dad of my dating efforts. I love my daddy, but I’ll admit we have a peculiar relationship, a fact to which the waitresses who’ve served us will attest.
Dad: “Baby, you don’t need to worry about that right now. You’ve got plenty of time.”
Me: “Well, I know, but I do date. I just date douche bags.”
I realize the waitress is standing next to us, with a surprised and amused expression as she refills our drinks.
Me: “One guy asked me to come over and watch Arrow with him. He didn’t own a TV. The day I find a guy who’s not a bag of dicks, I’ll call you up and tell you there’s someone I want you to meet.”
Dad: “Well that’s the way to do it. Don’t listen to your brother. He’s been married since he was fuckin’ twelve years old. You enjoy it while it lasts.”
So, yesterday, when I woke up, I sent my dad the following text:
When I didn’t get a response, I sent:
He told me he wasn’t sure and he’d call in a bit. Soon, the song Cowgirls Don’t Cry filled the room…
Dad: “Watcha doin?”
Me: “Commenting on my blog.”
Dad: “What do you say we do something different today?”
Me: “Okay. Where do you wanna go?”
Dad: “How ’bout you meet me over at Twin Peaks at 11:00?”
Me: “Sure. Works for me.”
Now, I had never actually been to Twin Peaks before yesterday. I’d heard mixed reviews, some comparing it to Hooters, but others comparing it to Buffalo Wild Wings. I just pictured conveniently tight t-shirts. I had told my dad 11:10, thinking it would take me longer to get there, but arrived at 10:50. I knew he hadn’t yet, as his work truck wasn’t in the parking lot. I immediately realized that I was not, in fact, at what was basically Buffalo Wild Wings. I also realized that, as the apparent only female customer in the place, I was both over dressed and under dressed in my ruffled pink flip flops, jean shorts, and pink “I ❤ Springfield XDM” t-shirt. You see, at Twin Peaks, the female dress code is apparently…
The counter was crowded with girls wearing plaid bras, khaki panties, and mountain boots as I entered… alone… thinking:
Seriously, Dad? Seriously?!?!
I don’t think less of people who work for their money. Food service is one of the few jobs I skipped while I worked my way through college, because it’s hard. I may have been surprised and felt out of place, but I had no intention of being disrespectful to girls who had friendly smiles on their faces, so I just gave them one in return as I stumbled through asking for a table.
Me: “Hi. I’m waiting for my dad…” Motherfucker, how creepy does that sound? “He should be here soon and he’ll probably be wearing an electric company shirt…” Look at their faces. Look at their faces. “… so if I could just get a booth, that would be great.”
I was soooo glad they had booths, because I was concentrating so hard on looking at their faces, I hadn’t even noticed the layout. Honestly, this wouldn’t have been so bad during the dinner hour, as there would’ve been at least a few other female customers. This was lunch, though, and the only people who eat lunch at Twin Peaks on a Tuesday are these guys.
I quickly realized that I was literally the only woman in the place not wearing a push-up bra and flannel and it was beginning to get crowded. I looked over the menu, briefly, and realized one of the choices was a sandwich called The Mile High Club.
Seriously, Dad? Seriously?!?!
As I sat alone, each man who passed my table seemed to give me a subtle (or not so subtle) second glance.
“No, no. I’m just waiting for my da–. Wait. I mean…”
I think my server realized I felt a little awkward, so she sat down across from me and asked…
Server: “So, Belle. Do you think it’s gonna rain all day?”
Look at her face, look at her face.
Me: “I’m not sure. I didn’t even realize it was raining until I checked Facebook this morning. Fortunately I take the Turnpike to work, so I won’t have to deal with any flooded streets or anything. Honestly, I’m loving the rain. I’m so sick of all this sunshine and so over summer and ready for fall. I saw a spider the size of a baby squirrel the other day and I. Am. Done. It wasn’t really the size of a baby squirrel. I did kill it, though. It didn’t like just go missing, which would’ve been terrible. I don’t even know how it got in, since I live upstairs.”
Fuck, Belle. You have been talking since THE BEGINNING OF TIME. Shut up!
Server: “Yeah, I know what you mean. I’m ready for some colder weather, too”
She didn’t stay much longer, since she had tables. It was super sweet of her to sit and chat with me, though. While I had been babbling like a lunatic eating her own hair, I saw my dad’s truck pull in and gave an internal sigh of relief, figuring he’d be in any minute. I’m pretty sure he rescued a baby badger and raised it to adulthood in the parking lot, though, because it was at least another two and half years before he walked through that door.*
I was so relieved to end this awkwardness, that I immediately hugged him and said
Oh… weird. Don’t say ‘daddy’ in a Twin Peaks.
He sat down and we started chatting. He seemed to think nothing of sitting across from his daughter while a very sweet girl in flannel pasties took our order, so I brought up the sexy plaid elephant in the room on my own.
Me: “Just so you know, it is super awkward to be having lunch with my dad in a strip club.”
Dad: ::cackles:: “Hey, I come here for the food.”
Me: “Clearly. Let me guess, The Mile High Club?”
Dad: “Hey, that’s a great sandwich and it’s huge. You could eat off of that thing for days. Lena’s always askin’ ‘Where’d you go for lunch today?’ and when I tell her Twin Peaks, she never believes me when I say it’s for the food. Hooters may have good scenery, but their food sucks. At least when I come here, they’ve got the scenery and they have great food.”
Me: “Classy, dad.”
Dad: “Classy! That’s it! It’s a classy restaurant.”
I did not bother to clarify my sarcasm that it was his comment I was calling classy, not…
Me: “Yeah, yeah. I get it. They’re bringing you food, not lap dances.”
Dad: “Hey, I’ve known women who’ve put themselves through school doing this kinda thing.”
Me: “Well, duh. Hell, if I didn’t like gummy worms so much, I’d be working here.”
Honestly, the food was just meh, but the company was still great. My daddy gave me life advice and we caught up on family gossip. I bragged to him about my blog being Freshly Pressed and doubling my followers in a day, since he’s the one who always tells me I need to be a writer. He’s super supportive of my writing efforts and makes it clear the pride he has in me for both these and my Master’s degree. Despite that, we sort of have this unspoken agreement that he’s not going to actually follow my blog, because no matter how nontraditional our relationship, he doesn’t need to read all of those jokes about my vibrators. It’s a very unspoken agreement. Since he doesn’t know how the whole blogging process works, I’m pretty sure he just nods along at this topic like when I start rambling about how awesome it is to be a librarian. In fact, I’m almost certain that every time I start talking about these things, in his head I’m telling him all about the unicorn story I wrote at school today and I look like this…
Regardless, he’s as supportive of these updates as one might expect from a member of the Duck Dynasty family.
Me: “I love you daddy. Thanks for lunch.”
Dad: “Love you too, baby. Sorry it was at a strip club.”
Me: “Oh, that’s okay. I’ll just write a blog about it called ‘Looking at Tits with My Dad.”
*Fun fact: I actually looked up the age of maturity for a badger. You can’t say I’m not thorough.