Asking ‘Beets’ Assuming

This post by Jennifer Flaten

 

Remember how you’re taught that assuming something can make an a$$ out of you and me? Well, the result of my assuming wasn’t quite that bad, but it did leave a bad taste in my mouth.

 

Let this serve as a cautionary tale.

 

Yesterday was staff lunch day at work. We have staff lunch once a month and it is usually a potluck and yesterday’s was no different. I walked into the conference room and found a nice array of food.

 

I’d broughtmor a fruit plate. When I signed up for my item I noticed that the only other person signed up was bringing muffins. I joked that we had the makings of a nice continental breakfast, it seems my joke stuck because the other items on the buffet included an egg casserole and what looked, to me, like a strawberry (perhaps even with rhubarb) fruit crisp.

 

The mystery dish was a deep maroon red with pieces of what could only be strawberries. Plus, it had a lovely sprinkle of  walnuts on top, so I plopped a nice scoop on my plate. At this point, I should have asked, but I didn’t.

 

At the table I’m biting into my blueberry muffin, when I hear a co-worker asking the maker of the “fruit” salad if it was his version of ambrosia. His explanation seemed a bit elaborate, but someone talked over him, so I didn’t couldn’t really hear his reply.

 

Muffin finished it was time to eat the compote/ambrosia/crisp thing. I took my fork and stirred it around. Hmm, what is that big slab of red…is it a strawberry. Of course, it’s a strawberry, after all this is some sort of strawberry fruit compote/ambrosia crisp thing. I mean, I assume it is.

 

Just then I heard the salad’s maker talking about how he uses both fresh and frozen raspberries in his salad…okay, so this is some sort of fruit salad.

 

I popped the forkful in my mouth. It took approximately one second for me to realize my mistake. This was NOT a fruit salad. Nor was it a compote/ambrosia/crisp.

 

This was, in fact, a veggie salad. Specifically a beet salad. The strangest beet salad (my apologies to its maker) I’ve ever had. It had raspberries, a raspberry sauce, mandarin oranges and beets.

 

Let me just say, I don’t hate beets. If pressed I would say even that I am okay with them. When I know they are beets. When they are a strawberry trojan horse  I don’t like them.

 

My first instinct was to spit it out-violently, but I couldn’t spit it out. For goodness sake’s I am at WORK I should act like an adult. So I dutifully chewed the offending beet and washed it down with a lot of water and a nice bite of egg casserole.

 

I poked the beet salad one more time for good measure, just to see if any strawberries were in it.

 

Another co-worker plopped down next to me, she had a blop of the beet salad on her plate. She motioned to it with her fork and said “This looks interesting…how is it?”

 

I replied that it was made with beets (trying to suppress the shudder). My co-worker frowned at the salad and used her fork to move it to the far edges of her plate.

 

She she didn’t assume…she asked. Thus saving herself from the beets.

 

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10 Responses to Asking ‘Beets’ Assuming

  1. This reminds me of a time when my late husband Bill was alive. My singing group performed at a senior apartment complex, and we were invited to stay for supper afterward. I said I needed to get home to fix Bill’s supper since he couldn’t do that on his own, thanks to being partially paralyzed. The cook offered to send food home with me, and I agreed, grateful not to have to prepare the meal. She loaded pork chops, mashed potatoes, dressing, and what looked like cranberry sauce in two cardboard to go boxes.

    After I got home and dished out the meal, Bill took one bite of the cranberry sauce and said, “Ooh, these beets are horrible.” I like beets, although I don’t eat them very often. Needless to say, I had a second helping.

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  2. Mike Staton says:

    Reminds me of the time I attended a journalism seminar and I tried caviar for the first time. I spit it out into a napkin. I shudder at the memory.

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  3. Neva Bodin says:

    An interesting sounding salad! Surprise salad one might say. I’m pretty gutsy about eating anything, I even like beets, but you’re right, when you expect one flavor and get another, sometimes it puts you off eating that object. The only foods I haven’t been able to make myself try though on my plate are snails and anchovies.

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  4. Joe Stephens says:

    That reminds me of the time I gave my now ex-wife (not because of this incident) a big glass of buttermilk when she thought it was milk. With God as my witness, I thought she liked buttermilk. She doesn’t. It didn’t go over well.

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  5. Doris says:

    Ah beets, roasted, pickled but in fruit salad-don’t think so. Oh my, what a surprise. Doris

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  6. I once thought butter was ice cream (we used margarine as a kid, and it never looked like ice cream!). Boy did I get a surprise when I took a spoonful! Fun post, Jennifer, but sorry for your inability to beat the beets!

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  7. S. J. Brown says:

    One or two experiences like that has taught me to ask every time I am not sure what something is. It has also taught me to bring identifiable food to share.

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  8. Nancy Jardine says:

    I think I’m guilty of making assumptions when in awkward situations, too, Jennifer. Becasue I have a hearing problem now it’s often difficult to hear in crowds and I’ve had a few mishaps kind of similar to yours. Bell peppers chopped fine and jalapenos fine are quite a different kettle of fish! BTW- my daughter makes a really tasty warm beet salad with peaches and it really is delicious.

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  9. Wranglers says:

    Funny Jennifer. I love the way you find interesting things to say about everyday like. Thanks for sharing. Cher’ley

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  10. sstamm625 says:

    I like beets–sometimes–but I wouldn’t want to be surprised by them either, Jennifer. Fun post!

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