One Hundred Ninety Degrees

I budgeted plenty of time for things to go poorly, but today at O’Hare, everything – rental car return, baggage check, TSA – all went incredibly smooth. I have so much time to kill.

I’m sitting at a bar in the terminal, editing photos on my phone. My beer runs out. When Todd the bartender takes a momentary break from flirting with women 29 years his senior, I ask for another one.

The girl two stools down from me orders a burger. When Todd asks how she wants it cooked, she says, “one hundred ninety degrees”.  Quite a request for  “the chef” at a shitty airport bar.

He grabs my glass, takes it over to the beer spout, refills it, lets it sit for a moment, gets distracted by a MILF on the other side of the bar – then hands it to burger girl. I watch my beer land in front of her. I’m tempted to tap her on the shoulder and explain to her that just happened but I feel constrained.

While I want my beer, there is plenty more of where it came from. She takes a sip of my refilled glass. Todd asks her again- “How do you want that cooked?” “One hundred ninety degrees”, she tersely replies. “You guys should have a thermometer back there”. 

Now I understand who everyone is and what is best for them.

I bark out a rhetorical question- “Hey Todd. Where’s my beer?”, knowing full well where it is- and that if I spread this knowledge, it’s likely to ruin Fahrenheit girl’s night.

He pours me a fresh glass and delivers it to me with an air of low key shame. 

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