Why you won’t like this ‘Hangry Man’ if he’s starved of affection

Setting his sights on “writing wrongs of the Universe” one column at a time is Dave Kelly

I’ve just come back from London, where I had one of the best meals of my life.

My dining partner agreed that it wasn’t just the food, but the service, surroundings and company. London has more restaurants per square mile than anywhere else in Europe, so we were glad to get it right first time. Because, when things go wrong with me, they go wrong big time!

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Turning into the Hulk at the thought of a bad meal

Anybody get angry when it comes to food? I thought so! I’ve been reliably informed by my 14 year-old daughter Thea that I am officially a “Hangry Man”.

Let’s be really clear, I love food and I love eating out. Do I expect a good level of service, be it Harvey Nicks or a regular gastro pub? Absolutely!

Is it reasonable to expect this everywhere? Probably not. What I do think is reasonable is good manners. That’s the first step in avoiding my food Hulk wrath.

In praise of the food industry

The food service industry and their representatives are hardworking. We all know this and, even in the high-end restaurants, put in the graft out front and behind the scenes in the kitchen.

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I think being a chef is an honourable job. Maybe not in the same bracket as nurses and firefighters, Can you imagine diners standing on their doorsteps playing the spoons in salutation to

Gordon Ramsay on a Thursday evening at 8pm? I think not!

But it’s definitely a job you should take pride in. I’ve started cooking more often in an attempt to impress my potential new partner and it’s going well, thanks to the ultimate secret weapon, the second greatest invention man has made after the wheel.

My new cooking "best friend"

I’m talking of course about the slow cooker. We have become something like best friends. He never let’s me down. And I know he won’t drink all the beers in the fridge when I go to bed!

Anyone who has a relationship with theirs will know what I mean. So, when I do go out to eat. I expect the establishments I frequent to get it right. And if they don’t, I reckon it’s absolutely right to point it out.

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How some eateries respond to this is where things can get tricky for me. Everyone is entitled to get something wrong when things are busy. But I’m more than happy to step up a gear if I feel I’m not being taken seriously.

Expecting the best

If I’m paying good money, I want things right. Same with clothes and service industries of every type.

I’m by no means a culinary snob either. I recently took advantage of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme, filling my boots and belly with Desperate Dan-sized portions in some best restaurants.

Then there were the others, which I won’t name but seemed to think half priced grub should mean half sized portions.

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In my mind, these places should be trying to get people in and the economy up, not starving us with portions fit for an Oompa Loompa!

Perhaps I’m getting grouchy in my old age. Maybe the current situation is having an adverse effect on me. But, if you do see me entering your eatery, don’t make me hangry. Like David Banner, you wouldn’t like me when I’m hangry!

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