Tonight, as a 25-year-old, I ate alone in a restaurant for the first time in my entire life.
Sure, I've gone to coffee shops by myself, but that seems normal because you're supposed to look thoughtful with your weathered Sartre paperback or your MacBook.
But tonight, I ate a turkey burger and drank a Bell's Two-Hearted all by myself at the Emory in Ferndale. And it wasn't that bad.
I imagined it would be that bad, and more. As an only child I have had more than my share of "me time" so I don't really feel a need to seek opportunities in daily life to kick it by myself. When I have plans to meet friends somewhere and I show up first (which is every time) I feel really weird and like an asshole for sitting at a giant table all by myself.
Tonight, though, I NEEDED that turkey burger and no one was around. So after I took my Vespa on some errands, I climbed into that u-shaped booth to see what would happen.
First of all, like always, the server came by with two table settings. I placed my drink order and she brought it, then disappeared for some time. Apparently she just assumed I was waiting for someone. After all, I go to the Emory quite often and have never eaten alone in my life.
Eventually she came back to ask "are you okay?" (verbatim) and I said yes, I was flying solo and I would need a turkey burger to continue being okay.
Eating alone turned out not to be that bad.
I'm on my iPhone all the time any way, and tonight I learned that it wants to replace the word "doodles" with "doodies" (here's why I found out). Plus, there was no one around to swipe any of my aioli sauce.
And yes, the turkey burger was damn good. That's why I considered eating alone in the first place.