The menu Sunday evening at mom’s AL community included a classic light Italian marinara with meatballs over pasta. When I was a child, my mother’s spaghetti sauce was a delicious thick amalgam of mushrooms, onions, garlic, ground beef or sausage, herbs and various dispositions of tomatoes, cooked to a perfection, over pasta. Of course, that’s how I make spaghetti sauce, and what my kids expected of a spaghetti sauce. 

Evidently mom knew not to order the spaghetti, as she recalled (!) she didn’t care for it. The friend she was dining with, however, did. When mom’s friend’s meal arrived, mom went sideways. “This is NOT how spaghetti sauce is made!!!!!” She set her course for the kitchen, only to be deflected by the server who told my mama, ‘Only staff is allowed in the kitchen.’ My mother then tried to duck under this girl’s arms! The server stood fast and told mom (at my daughter’s coaching, who was helping serve that evening), “Your granddaughter tried the meal and thought it was delicious. Mom went to my girl’s office, and lectured her for five minutes on what a spaghetti sauce ought to look like.
My daughter was the MOD (manager on duty) this weekend. The MOD is required to taste everything that leaves the kitchen for every meal. She told me the sauce was lovely and meatballs were, literally, the best she’d ever tasted. Mom is having catastrophic reactions on behalf of others over meals she didn’t order.

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