Last weekend my wife and I met some friends at the Olive Garden. I try not to eat at any restaurant on Miller Road in Flint Township because nearly all restaurants are chains that taste the same. Unfortunately, some of our friends seem to prefer those restaurants. Personally, I can't tell the difference between the food, service and atmosphere at Chili's and the food, service and atmosphere at Outback Steakhouse, but it might just be me.
So we met our friends at the Olive Garden, but I wasn't very hungry. I ordered soup and salad. The salad and breadsticks are two of the best parts of the Olive Garden. The salad was good, but primarily because it had pepperocinis. The breadsticks (which I used to love before I came to love food) were fine, but when I caught myself trying to soak up salad dressing with every bite of bread I realized I only used to love them because they were warm and soft, not because they are particularly good.
The minestrone soup prompted this entry to The Mundane Life. It was tasteless. It looked and tasted like a reddish broth with a can of mixed beans dumped in. I'm not sure it was even salted. The bad part was that it wasn't even bad; it was just tasteless. For me, I guess it represents restaurants like the Olive Garden that are the sit-down versions of McDonald's. The food is never good, but you know if you walk into a Olive Garden in Flint, Michigan or an Olive Garden in Ontario, California you'll get the same food, service, and atmosphere.
In the end, the visit with our friends was great, and I guess eating there can just serve as a reminder of the kinds of restaurants I really love.