“Waiter, has any one ever told you that you look like Elton John?”
“No sir,” I say looking down my nose at the customer.
“I mean a young Elton John,” the man adds quickly, realizing I’m not flattered by the comparison.
“That’s a new one on me sir,” I reply icily.
“I meant it as a compliment,” the man says nervously.
“If you said I looked like Brad Pitt that would be better,” I counter.
The man suddenly looks uncomfortable.
“You should never upset the person who’s handling your food sir,” I say with a faint smile.
The man’s wife laughs. “Oh boy Marv you’re in trouble now!
“You can spit in his food. We won’t mind,” his other friend cackles.
I’m enjoying watching Marvin squirm but I should let him off the hook. He’s here to enjoy himself after all.
“I’ll take it as a compliment. Sir Elton is a very talented and philanthropic individual,” I say.
“Yes. It’s a compliment waiter,” Marvin says.
“I’ve been told I look like Nathan Lane a few times so don’t sweat it sir,” I offer.
“Whenever I get a haircut people tell me that.” I was at the barber this morning.
“Nathan Lane! Another talented individual!” Marvin says beaming.
“Yes sir,” I demur, injecting just enough servility in my voice to make Marv think he’s back in control of the situation.
“You’re a good sport waiter.”
“Thank you sir.”
Marvin feels better. I take the table’s order and head into the kitchen. Louis is there making espressos.
“Louis, do I look like Nathan Lane or Elton John?”
Louis looks me up and down.
“No honey. You don’t.”
“So what’s with all the comparisons to fat gay men?” I ask.
“Well, you are a bit pudgy,” Louis offers laughing.
“Thanks a lot Louis,”
“You asked,” Louis crows exiting the kitchen.
I look at myself in the bar mirror. Time to go back to the gym. Ever since I broke up with my girlfriend I’ve gained a few pounds.
And I guess that’s why they call it the blues.