They say that in the restaurant business the most important things are “location, location, location.” Well that’s bullshit. I’d know because all three of my restaurants failed despite excellent locations. Both “Let’s Taco ‘Bout Our Feelings” And “God’s Flan For Me” were right next to a Mexican cemetery yet didn’t last more than a month. But it was the failure of “Artichoke Me, Daddy” (located in the vicinity where all those grisly strangling murders happened) that really made me look back and ask myself: where did I go wrong?
I sometimes think that dressing the staff in 7-foot-tall artichoke costumes might have been a mistake. Not just because some customers kept confusing them for marijuana plants, but mainly because the suits made them look like walking clumps of rabbit Hulk poop. Then again, it fit so perfectly with the artichoke theme of the place. Sometimes, running a restaurant is more like art than a business. And sometimes, it’s more like art…ichoke. I regret nothing.
I do wonder if the name had been a mistake, though. I mean… the “Daddy” part kind of makes it sound like we were a kid restaurant, when that couldn’t have been further from the truth. I specifically cut out holes in the artichoke costumes so the female staff could show off their bikini-clad boobs at all times. Half of our menu had alcohol in it, even the bread. Our placemats were made from old police crime scene photos featuring the Midnight Strangler’s victims. Perhaps “Artichoke Me, Sir” would have been a better choice. Guess we’ll never know.
Finally, I will admit that one of my waiters turning out to be the Midnight Strangler and choking that one customer, in full artichoke costume and in front of all those reporters might not have gotten us the… best kind of press possible. Boy oh boy, I love a good pun as the next man but the papers really went with it. I don’t think it even made sense. “Artichoke” is ONE word, dammit. Pretending like it’s not is just lazy reporting if you ask me.
In the end, though, if I had to identify my biggest mistake as a restaurateur, it was going with this artichoke theme when we only sold hot dogs.