The other day, I was hanging out with my bro Geoff, when he mentioned that there’s a great five star restaurant on campus; I thought I’d give it a try. It’s called “d’ps,” which stands for something along the lines of “dingue parisien supermarché,” which is probably something classy from French haute couture. It certainly sounds fancier and a lot more (grammatically) proper than anything I ever heard in my AP French class. In retrospect, I probably should’ve done my research before taking on this restaurant review—oh well! As the French say, “tu ne vis qu’une fois.” I honestly have no idea what it means, but it somehow adds to the sense of allure surrounding the restaurant (a “je ne sais quoi”, hon hon hon!). In fact, that’s what was on my mind as I approached the building. It truly is an enigma with its exterior façade of beautiful faded brick; wall-tall windows with eternal blinds, which lend an exclusive feel; two sets of doors which are automatic if you press the button; and rooftop mechanisms which, rumor has it, are government-exclusive lines for the true VIP-MVP kids. Then again, who knows? Those chunks of metal are definitely higher tech than anything we have at RPI; it’s not like we’re engineers who are supposed to know about that, or anything.
Once I stepped under the awning, I noticed that there was a doormat. Needless to say, I was beyond impressed—I wasn’t even in the door and I was already picking up on hints that this restaurant would be proper and cultured. Frankly, it was quite a relief to finally find an establishment that acknowledged the long history of wiping feet; nobody likes wet feet. The French know you can only be so wet at one time; it’s absolutely crucial to save moisture for your mouth, hence why we wipe our feet dry. In addition to being culturally cognizant and in touch with its roots, this restaurant was also competitively advanced. Just on the righthand side upon entry, there is a state-of-the-art machine for customers’ convenience. This machine allows you to purchase your own choice of—very, very cheap, since you must’ve spent the rest of your tuition loans on a reservation—snacks and beverages which drop at the push of a button. It’s so thoughtful that they put it there. Most fine dining serves you hand and foot, but this establishment provides the unique experience of doing it yourself; this clearly demonstrates how they’re so busy that they don’t have the time nor effort to serve you. Lucky as I was—I didn’t make a reservation—some of the staff were available.
I walked up to the front desk to inquire about a walk-in dining experience. To my delight, I noticed that it was furnished with a basket of pens and papers. When I asked the man at the desk how much dinner for one would be, he said, “sorry, son. I don’t think we have what you’re looking for here.” AH HAH. It hit me. This truly was the finest of experiences to be had. This was not your average restaurant—no, much better. They clearly catered to more than the physical need for sustenance; they were also a premium distributor of puzzles to those with eager minds and an insatiable hunger for knowledge. I would have to work for my meal and find it.
My first instinct was to turn to the empty desk in the middle of the room and feel along the counters for any hints as to where my food could be. I stumbled about for an hour or two. Where was my food? Where could it be? Was there a puzzle I was supposed to read, printed into the magazines and paper notices laying in abundance? Was the food perhaps invisible? I had just about given up at this point. Then, as I went to sit down by the fireplace to weep and share my grievances with my parents over the phone, I hit my head on something in the air, which resonated with the ‘clink’ of heaven: I had found my meal. Oh my gosh, was my first thought. Am I delusional? Have these minutes turned hours finally made me start imagining things? But no—this was truly abstract, this was art. Now I could finally feast on my grand meal of food… for thought.
I proceeded to wolf everything down as if it was thin air. With the various memorabilia, endless pamphlets of information, and questionable interior design, it was an endless service. In the middle of my meal, I realized that I was thirsty for knowledge; in search of a drink, I turned around to look. And when I did, hot damn—this place provided three services! I didn’t realize it before, but as I ran my tongue across my parched lips, it was as if a veil was lifted from my eyes; the man at the counter was extremely super “omg I can’t” even hot. I got out of my seat and, with my best swag walk on, walked toward the front desk.
“Can I help you?” he said. Yes. Oh. My. God. He looked left and right, and shifted in place a little bit, likely in excitement and anticipation. “Sorry,” he said. “Uh, I’m gonna have to ask you to leave.” What. I. Literally. Could. Not. He was playing hard to get. Yess. My eyes glazed over. I put on my best puppy dog eyes which, if you know me, are pretty damn good. “Wait,” I said. “Why?”
“Um… well, uh…” I could hear the hesitation in his voice. This was probably really hard for him. “You’re bothering people.” But the room was practically empty. Whoot! This was the best day of my life! This restaurant really was the best. It had already provided three services, and now it was providing a fourth: they were feeding me excuses.
The man continued, explaining that I would have to be escorted to the door (romantic!), so obviously I kept playing along for a little while. Minutes later, I found myself being roughly escorted out the door in handcuffs… sexy. Well, then. Hard to get? Two can play at that game bro… I mean… daddy… 😉 “You’re getting a terrible review on Yelp!” Ugh, okay, so maybe I wasn’t actually all that good at playing hard to get. I couldn’t think of anything, so as a last resort, I yelled, “Burger King has better service!”
“Alright, are we done here…?” Just before they lugged me off to the high security complimentary hotel, I turned to look at Sid. Oh yeah, I had a cameraman: Sid Kochman ’19. This was such an amazing experience that the hoi polloi would never get, so I thought I’d be nice to document it. Anyhow, I looked at him with what was probably a wicked gleam in my eye. “Yes, but can I ask a favor?” A confused look crossed his face.
“What?” I licked my lips, remembering that I never did grab a drink.
“When I get out of these handcuffs, can you wear that man bun I got you for your birthday?”
“Uh… okay?” He shrugged as if to say that he didn’t really mean it, but I was pretty sure that I could get things my way—I was feeling pretty confident after my visit to d’ps.
“Let’s go!” At this point, I couldn’t wait to call for my next serving of excuses and denial. Maybe I’ll try that when I’m off of Resilience, to see if it actually is amazing. I think I’m addicted to the perfection that is d’ps.