I don't think I'll ever forget the expression on my date's face when, in response to his request for a glass of water, our rough-around-the-edges waitress at Le Tub in Hollywood simply pointed to a big Igloo plastic cooler with a stack of flimsy plastic cups and said, "Get it yourself."
Surely this was a far cry from the service he was used to receiving back home in Delray ("Would you like still or sparkling, sir?"), so kudos to him for just laughing off the shock of what he was hoping was just a joke.
At that point, I began wondering what kind of a kook he thought I was for suggesting this place for a first date. After all, the resto was built entirely of crap
found on Hollywood Beach, so it's not exactly what one would call
romantic. The menus look like they were literally Xerox-ed about a
decade ago too, and the bathrooms... well, let's just not go there. But
heck, he couldn't seem to come up with anything better, and I wasn't in
the mood to get all gussied up for a weekday lunch rendezvous. I had
been wearing a tank top, jeans, and flip-flops all day, and there was
no way I was yankin' out a sundress for some guy who, frankly, seemed
a little uppity the first time we met. A Le Tub test ought to ferret
out his chill side, I theorized, if he had one.
defense, I warned him that -- though chock-full of Florida charm -- Le Tub
isn't the place to go for anyone famished, prone to splinters, or
offended easily. It's not quite like a visit to Dick's Last Resort,
wherein the servers deliberately berate diners and make them wear
makeshift paper hats with Sharpie-d expressions such as "I spread like
butter!" and "I cried during 'Brokeback Mountain.'" But chances are,
the staff won't be spirited off to work for the Breakers anytime soon
After returning with filled water cups, my date
commented that the view at Le Tub was great, then said he liked that
each table seemed private, and added that he could see coming back again to
spend a Sunday nursing some Red Stripes with buddies. He also commented
he was "blown away" by not only the sheer size of his hamburger but
also by the fact that it tasted like his Dad's barbecued version.
it's true that the way to a man's heart is through this stomach, I
think he would've considered asking his cardiologist to implant me in
there forever, especially after he scarfed down an entire basket of
thick-cut French fries and had a few bites of my chili.
was only one part of the date that was less-than-amusing: I forgot to
warn him that Le Tub doesn't take credit, so I had to fork out the dough.
That's OK, I decided. Next time, the meal is on him, and I'm sure it
won't be at some joint that allows flip-flops. Oooh -- now who's the
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Le Tub is located at 1100 N. Ocean Dr. in Hollywood. Call 954-921-9425, or click here.
Freelance writer Riki Altman eats everything that won't try to eat her first (with exceptions, of course) and dates younger men, older men, and older men who act like young men, along with locals, tourists, illegal aliens, and just plain aliens. Love Bites is a compilation of what happens when her dining and dating ordeals collide. Sometimes, it just ain't pretty.