I went to Chloe’s niece’s 6th birthday party yesterday. There was a snack table with a bowl of Doritos and I took a handful, put them on a little paper plate and was about to go eat them when I noticed I had dropped one.
I looked around. Did someone throw it away while I was bending down for two seconds? Seemed unlikely. But then I saw something. An old guy in his late sixties eating a plate of Doritos. Same plate size. Same number of chips. Did that guy pick up my plate of Doritos and just start eating them?
How could that be? It’s not like there were a lot of plates on the table with individual serving sizes of Doritos on them. My plate was the only one. It so obviously belonged to someone that I can’t imagine someone just taking it. And why not just make your own plate? It’s not like there weren’t any more Doritos. The bowl was full of them. And my plate was not carefully or artistically arranged. It was just a plate of Doritos, the same as anyone could have prepared themselves with five seconds of effort.
So I was left with a dilemma. Let it go and make a new plate (the course of action 99% of normal people would take) or talk to a stranger. I chose the latter.
“Hey,” I said. “Sarah is my friend’s niece. How do you know Sarah?”
He said it he was the grandfather of one of Sarah’s kindergarten friends, Emily.
I said, “I love kids’ parties. They always have the best food.”
He said, “Uh huh.”
I said, “You know what my favorite food is? Doritos.”
He stopped eating my plate of Doritos suddenly and immediately turned red. He obviously had considered that the Doritos belonged to someone, but he wasn’t sure at the time. Still, he took them. He said all embarrassed, “Were these your Doritos? I’m sorry, I just saw them there and I thought they put them out like that for the kids and I took the plate but then after I took it I saw that no one else had any plates and I saw you looking around but I didn’t want to say anything at that point and I’m sorry.”
I said, “Give me back my fucking Doritos, asshole!”
Just kidding. No, I laughed and said it was okay. It was an honest mistake and a funny story. Then we talked about how birthday parties for kids are so elaborate now and back when we were kids (forty years apart) the birthday boy or girl got presents–there was no such thing as “party favors” for just showing up.
Anyway, Chloe found me and I bid the Doritos-stealer adieu.