The Panera Adventure

For here.

For here. Those are the two scariest words in the English language, especially when you are in a shopping mall Panera…by yourself. They are even scarier if you are wearing a track suit, and have not yet showered that day. Sure, you want to devour your sandwich, chips and soda combo meal in the sanctuary of your car, free of  judgmental soccer moms giving the back of your over sized head second degree burns with their disapproving laser glares. But, alas, your car is full of shrub stumps, and smells like Miss Havisham’s rotting vegetable garden. So you exchange your vibrating flashing sandwich alarm thing for a plastic tray and retreat to the corner-most table, far from that one lady that looks she is about to become unhinged as she yells at her son to “get back here and finish your friggin’ soup.” Of course, just as you are about to take the flavor train to chipotle chickenville, a chatty couple plops down at the table next to yours…in an empty row of tables. You try to ignore their conversation, which is almost entirely about Panera – in a Panera – by reading the back of the potato chips bag and studying the repetitive design pattern on the soda cup, but it’s no use. Finally, you finish your meal, and stand to return your tray, when you realize you’ve gotten chipotle dressing all over your track suit. You can sense, without looking, that the couple is staring at you. But there’s no time to clean yourself, you’ve got a car full of stumps to dump. Next time you’ll take it to go.

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5 thoughts on “The Panera Adventure

  1. Been there. Solo mall eating is a painful thing to do. Painful because when I’m by myself I shove the food down so quickly I get indigestion, heartburn, and a host of other problems best not shared here. Diarrhea.

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