Entertaining Mistakes

It's your worst nightmare: intimate dinner or big splashy event, and something goes horribly wrong. The causes can be legion. The only known antidote: humor & quick thinking.

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Um, where's the rest of my feast?
Photo: Yasu & Junko

Um, where's the rest of my feast?

Who: Ana Tenzer, law partner, Denver, Colorado

Result: A miniature-sized meal

This year’s Passover dinner was one of many that we’ve had in our home over the 18 years I’ve been with my husband, who understands that I grew up in a Spanish/Cuban family where it’s mandatory to serve more than is ever possible to consume in a sitting–mandatory! And to have tons of leftovers.

I was closing a deal at work, so we agreed that he would do the dinner: brisket and asparagus. We didn’t talk about the amounts, or about the other sides. I’m a micromanager, but I left it up to him. That night I walked in to dinner at the same time that the guests arrived, and he pulls out the brisket. There was maybe enough meat for the Olsen twins: It was one-fourth of what we needed to serve eight people! Then he put out like 24 pieces of asparagus. No roasted potatoes, no salad.

What now? At that point we were counting off the asparagus. I’ve never in my life had a dinner where the plate in front of you is empty before the meal!

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