He shot them a wry smile, and they smiled back. The utensils were stacked neatly on the patio table, the conversation winding down, the sun already finished its descent, the food consumed... well most of it, save the neat two-inch slice of a homemade lasagna. Mayhaps the size of a golf ball remained.
"Can I grab you a to-go box?" The waiter asked.
"Sure." The fair-skinned lady replied, albeit with slightly shifting eyes.
"No problem! I'll be right back with-"
"Yeah, she didn't really like it," her short-haired friend interjected with a mousy voice that reeked of the latest SJW video on the front page of Youtube. He chuckled out of automatic behavior, a nod to the obvious, if not blatant sarcasm.
"No, actually she really didn't like it, right?" Clearly the one who "really didn't like it" wasn't being very vocal about the issue. Last time I checked, thought the waiter/server/insert gender neutral horseshit here, people in Western countries who don't like the food at a restaurant tend not to finish 95% of the god-damn plate.
"Oh, really?" He said with fake intrigue.
"Yeah, well, she's a Yelper, can't you do anything about it?" The question was asked in high-pitch, waffling between concern and a Mafioso-style threat. Oh, the consequences that faced the restaurant should they receive a horrific 140-characters-or-less review... he had to take immediate action.
Somehow the food critic had found her voice, "Yeah, it was kinda bland, have you tried it?"
It was the most popular weekly special of the restaurant. Inside the manager was currently on break devouring said blandness.
"Is there anything else I can get you?" He asked with the fakest shit-eating smile. A full refund? A gift certificate for the entire family? A foot massage with essential oils and shit? The rolling of the red carpet with a royal announcement the next time Her Grace treated us with her presence again? Or maybe just an upvote on her next Reddit post or like on her next Instagram photo.
"No, that's okkaaaaayyyyy," awkwardly forced.
"Ah yes, a box then." He couldn't wait to take a break himself and check the score of the Lakers game.
At that moment, somewhere in a war-torn country in Africa, a mother was crying; her malnourished infant in her weathered arms.