A fairly old, (since 1999) but highly unique concept (and one that I’m just catching on to) called “Dark Dining” is making the rounds in my area of the country. Patrons pay a lot of money to NOT see the food they will be ingesting. It began in a small diner in El Paso where the Texas style BBQ ribs were so ugly in appearance and terribly messy (dripping down the white bandanas of glutinous wranglers) that the proprietor of the establishment told his waitstaff, “Y’all, let’s just kill all the lights and we won’t have to garnish the plates all pretty like no more!”
Dark Dining was instantly born and swept the nation. The theory being that it heightens your other senses to eat in pitch blackness. But really it’s just a starving dieter’s dream. “What’s gobbled in the dark, stays in the dark!”
I decided to try this phenomenon at home instead of our Saturday night pizza restaurant jaunt — only I added one other unique concept…Darkness AND Silence. After slaving away all afternoon over a healthy meal of meatloaf, green beans and potatoes au gratin, I issued formal invitations to my family via disappearing ink (seemed eerily fitting) with written instructions specifying all six kids to enter the room quietly at 6 pm sharp with their lips zipped.
It was an unusually pleasant dinner with just the sounds of ravenous chewing here and there and once I thought I heard someone growl in appreciation. There was even one point where my senses were extra heightened. I sensed that someone definitely needed a bath. I congratulated myself on our first civilized meal in years and considered adopting this ritual as a once-a-week family tradition. And then I turned on the lights and found our mangy dog Lola lapping up the last bit of gravy on each plate. Apparently Dollar Store ink that disappears never reappears. The rest of the family could be found at Mama Lucia’s scarfing down an extra large pepperoni.
Hmmph. Here then is my list of…
TEN ACTIVITIES THAT SHOULD BE MANDATED DARK!
- Bathing Suit Shopping — Female customers can grope racks of swimsuits, grabbing any size their heart desires, head to the dressing room and if anything ties around their neck, that’s a perfect fit! Gleeful women will pack up their purchases and post on Facebook that they’ve just purchased a size 2 string bikini. None of this will matter because the next activity commanded in the dark is . . .
- Night Time Swimming Without Any Pool Lights On— (You’re welcome!)
- Gynecological Exams — If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen ’em all. No more having to shave your legs and shell out money for pedicures for a man who can’t be bothered to warm a speculum.
- Blind Dates –Blindfold the couple. Spin them around three times and let them pin the tail on the … ass who thought they would hit it off.
- Weddings— Will the bride wear white? Yes, a white terry cloth bathrobe. May as well be comfortable when taking the plunge because how many solemn promises are made wearing Spanx? The only vow that can be taken seriously is to be able to breathe again. “Something old, something new, something that leaves its mark, something that glows in the dark.” (How about fluorescent lipstick so “You may kiss the bride” doesn’t lead to the groom smooching the best man?)
- Sex–Married men are already accommodating in this regard if they wanna get any.
- Church–Hallelujah! The miracle of lower electricity bills.
- Grocery Shopping — Cuts down on damaged produce. What fun is it salaciously pinching melons when nobody can see you?
- Beauty Pageants — Can we actually crown someone for their inner beauty? I think it’s about time!
- Parties — Finally you really can dance like nobody’s watching!
What types of things would you like to see (pun intended) happen in the dark?