"No, that's correct, put it back," said our waiter. Then, to us, he added, "It's on me."
"What? You're rewarding us for being difficult and demanding problem customers?" I asked, bewildered.
"If this is how you treat troublemakers like us, then you better brace yourself for how we'll act when we come back for dinner," David said jokingly.
"Really, it's my pleasure," he said, and vanished without giving us another opportunity to protest his generosity.
David and I were baffled. Our bellies were full from steak and cheese, but we did our best to make an appreciative dent in the rich chocolate brownie.
"That was weird," David said between bites.
"Yeah, it's not like we're rich or famous. We're certainly not Meg Ryan. And here we were being all demanding and shit. Make sure you calculate this into the tip," I suggested.
We continued to chip away at the brownie while listening to the conversations around us, and I could see by his face that David's train of thought was traveling down the same track as mine. "People here must suck so much that you're rewarded, even if you're difficult, for simply being nice about it," I said.
"Just think of the kind of shit these poor guys who work here have to put up with every day," said David. For a moment, we contemplated this in silence.
"I'd go postal. I couldn't do it. I mean, I don't even have to interact with them directly and I want to slap every face in here," I said.
"Yeah. This weekend's been fun, but I'm looking forward to being back in San Diego, a safe 200 miles away from all these industry people," David said.