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You enjoy a wonderful five-course meal with your date at your favorite Japanese steakhouse, sit back in your chair, and breathe a contented sigh. Ah, it’s good to be affluent and American, you think. The check comes. You reach for …...

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Leftovers

Filed Under on November 3rd, 2012

Down with Dutch

By Seth Kabala

You enjoy a wonderful five-course meal with your date at your favorite Japanese steakhouse, sit back in your chair, and breathe a contented sigh. Ah, it’s good to be affluent and American, you think. The check comes. You reach for your credit card, and your server says, “No problem, sir. Your date said she’s picking up the tab.”

“Can life get any better?” You say.

“Yeah, it can,” the restaurant owner says. “You can pay your tab, cheapo cheat.” He pulls you back inside, out of your day-dream, motioning the on-staff sumo wrestler (doesn’t every Japanese restaurant have one of these?) to sit on you, literally, until the police arrive.

What happened? You got lost in a fantasy, an America where fine-dining (income bracket relatively speaking) for two people of somewhat close mutual attraction (say 60-40 male-to-female reciprocity) is not automatically considered the male’s responsibility to finance.

Watch out, men. This myth, that has no apparent origin, is perpetuated daily. Once you get married, sex is the reserve currency that trumps all other stores of value. So, yes, at some point you will have to pay. But in the dating phase, or at least until the woman decides she could do worse, someone needs to stand up for equal rights.

Hang on. Somebody’s yelling something at me. … Um, apparently this is a lost cause. Something about this being hard-wired into our DNA, a horde of angry women ready to crucify me should I push this issue forward, so, never mind.

But as a parting thought, I offer this scene at an actual Japanese steakhouse as evidence of the innocence from which we all rise and become eventual slaves to the reserve currency, my six-year-old son the unwitting star of the show:

Will: This is really good. We should come here more often.

Amy: It’s really expensive. That’s why we only come here every once in a while.

Will: You have to pay?

Well, since it appears I’ve wasted my time, and I’m married, and I have great respect for the reserve currency of my local neighborhood federal reserve, I’m going to go plan a date night.

My Visa.

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Seth Kabala

About: Seth Kabala
Seth is an entrepreneur, writer, musician, family man, and juggler of balls--big ones. He lives with his wife and three children in Portland, OR.

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