I’ve been so sleep-deprived recently that at times I’m feeling just a few steps behind myself in time (or like Baxter Stockman, shunted out of phase with our dimension). I see that I am at work, or on the Metro, or sitting down to dinner with friends. I know that conversation is happening, that I am a part of it. But somehow I am partially disconnected. I see the jokes I attempt, the point I cannot express, the simple courtesies I ignore and I think “who is this impostor living my life? How do I stop him.” It reminds me of the more creepy aspects of Being John Malcovich.
I found myself in a situation like this as I enjoyed a noteworthy dinner with friends at Medium Rare. Common knowledge by now, but Medium Rare serves steak frites. That’s it. You get a salad, some bread you’ll have to flag down staff to demand, and then steak covered in delicious brown secret sauce and a generous helping of fries. And all of this is more than enough to fill any single human being. Which is why it so horrifyingly awesome when they come around with a second, non-negotiable full helping of steak, sauce and fries, likely used to race your friend to see who finishes first without vomiting. Which is to say, I expect they’ll be adding buckets next to the tables.
The other charm of the menu is their approach to a wine list. In lieu of a standard wine list, the menu offers emotional tones – I wanted to go with something like “Humorous” or “Playful” or “Sexiful,” but my cohorts were feeling more “Complex.” Still, it was a nice approach to this dumbed-down version of the fare, and feeling so out of sorts I was happy to have the decisions as easy as pushing a colored button. I pushed Blue (read that last sentence as “yours says Doug”). It made the entire meal really easy, even if no causal connection was made between the wine, the “complexity” and the food.
Actually, the biggest charm of the entire menu was the price tag. Steak frites for $19.95. For the money, the value was unbelievable.
Still, with work kicking my ass and sleep just not happening how it should, I’m likely to reserve my next visit for a more conscious time when I can charm people with my imagined rapier wit and feel up to the challenge of two helpings of steak without feeling all icky afterward.
Man, screw that. If anyone wants $20 steaks and fries, you tell me and I am effing there.