A TODD GRAHAM GUIDE TO DINING OUT

Jared Wickerham

A FEW TIPS FROM THE MASTER OF BUDGET CUISINE

Bring a convincing looking grocery store flyer you made at home. That market price fish is now two dollars, you Branzino champion.

Groceryflyer_jpg_medium

Get the Todd Collins, which is just a mix of wine other tables didn't finish and splenda

Always park in the 15 minutes only spots for takeout. If someone points out that you're sitting down, wait until you've finished your dinner, grab a random bag at the take out counter, and leave without paying for either. TWO POINT CONVERSION.

They can't prove you put that AAA battery in your penne.

Order different dishes from two or three waitresses at once. See what gets there first. Deny everything.

"Accidentally" drop a business card with the host to get a table quickly. Table for two coming right up, Dr. Van Olivegarden!

Request table next to breastfeeding mother. Threaten to call county on 'em for serving alcohol in a place with nudity unless they comp your meal.

"Kids eat free" doesn't say anything about them being "yours," or even "human."

Baby-goats_medium

Get a Navajo Nation membership card. Chili's can't charge you for Southwest Egg Rolls and you can order as many as you like. It's the law.

If you're dining in Louisiana, Napoleonic law requires the drunk to be fed for free so long as they eat nude and/or have had an affair with a restaurant employee.

Feign cramping in front of expo window during 15 minutes or less lunch specials for free food.

Ask for the exact piece of cake they've got on the dessert tray. It's just like the discount you get for buying a model home, and you'd be surprised how much fiberglass you can digest.

Borrow your wife's purse. Place on the plate before you order, and immediately begin sawing into it. Demand a new steak. If server points out that you are eating a purse, respond with "That's better than eating the slop you just brought me!" Put A-1 sauce on purse for maximum effect.

Demand a gift card for those bad chicken sandwiches you just ordered. What was the name? Rodriguez. Rich Rodriguez. Someone said they didn't order those on delivery? Well, that's a problem, too. We're looking at a multi-card situation now, aren't we TGI Fridays of Tucson?

"I'm from the Food Network. I do a show about...food. Where I eat it. The food. Let's food. Look into the camera." [holds up flip phone]

How can I put this in a gentlemanly way? Hmm. Well, let's just say the Sam's Club sample lady has nerve endings just like the rest of us.

Get a bloodstained shirt. Demand the restaurant manager pay to have it dry-cleaned. When they ask about the blood, scream "It's not my fault your restaurant serves…MURDER." (This will not work at famed Las Vegas steakhouse MürderBår.)

Repeat this to yourself in the mirror until you can deliver it consistently and confidently: "Of course the Health Department hasn't heard of me. I'm the UNDERCOVER inspector. Now take me to the garlic bread station."

Build a replica of the meal you'd really like out of chips, queso, and guacamole.

Keep a stethoscope on you and, with a little practice, you'll learn how to get all the Chiclets you want for free. Thanks, Shriners!

Do you have a can of black spray paint, a Super Soaker, and an easily influenced friend? Because you wouldn't BELIEVE the gift cards Red Lobster gives you after you've been the victim of a hostage crisis.

Check your exits. Just in case.

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