10 Reasons Why

10 Completely Random Things I Learned While Sucking Down Margaritas at Ojeda’s

1. It’s hard to make a grand entrance at the restaurant when obnoxious people are blocking your way.

Okay, Mr. Speed Bump, I understand that the 47 pounds of spicy, fried lard that you just ate might slow you down a bit. Got it. But seriously, why are you finding it necessary to come to a complete halt in the tiny lobby? This is a certified transit area, not a campground. I can’t even open the door all the way because you have claimed squatter’s rights at the cashier’s desk, telling your life story while the rest of your amazingly-extensive family is just standing there, wiping grease off their chins and belching and contributing nothing to society.

Quit talking to that cashier now that your transaction is over. She is not your friend and she doesn’t care. She is only being nice to you because you just handed her money. “Did you enjoy your meal?” is not an invitation for you to start babbling about how your gout is acting up or why your second cousin Bucky Joe got arrested that one time at the Spittoon Festival. Grab a complimentary toothpick and GO.

2. I am apparently not as fond of screaming, hyperactive children as the rest of the world.

Dear Hostess Person: No, I’m not going to follow you to that table which you are indicating. Why? Do you see what’s going on at the next table? The one where something has apparently exploded, causing small humans to lose their minds and start throwing food while howling at a decibel level that can bring down a plane? There’s queso on the ceiling, for God’s sake. I don’t want to be anywhere near that.

And don’t look at me in confusion, wondering why I don’t find the howlers to be adorable little tykes that make me want to hug and kiss them. These are not the good kind of children, who quietly sit there and do nothing but count as a deduction on income tax returns. These are Satanic minions hell-bent on destroying civilization. I don’t even want to be in the same room with the Children of the Corn Tortilla. Please adjust your GPS and let’s find a more subdued area of this establishment.

3. It is a law of nature that you must order margaritas in a Mexican restaurant.

I don’t care what time of day it is, tequila just sets the appropriate tone, and it somehow biologically prepares your body for the impending influx of food items that your doctor has warned you to never touch again. (He’s not here right now, so screw him.) And don’t ask me lame little questions like whether I want a large or small margarita. Can you not tell by the pinched expression on my face that I have no desire for an alcoholic beverage served in a teacup? I want BIG. I want people to be frightened by the size of my beverage-ware, that kind of big.

4. Everything on the menu at Ojeda’s is the best thing ever.

You can’t go wrong. Close your eyes, stab at the menu, and try it. You’ll squeal with a level of satisfaction that is nearly orgasmic. (Not that anybody will hear you, due to the maelstrom of noise coming from the other room, with that table of unregulated offspring ripping apart the foundations of society whilst their parents do nothing to acknowledge ownership of their shared DNA.) Even the tortilla chips are delicious, but you don’t want to have too many of them, because they will take up valuable real estate in your tummy and you may not be able to finish your actual meal, a failure that will haunt you for days.

5. Puffed Tacos are proof that we were put on this planet for a reason.

I’d never even heard of these delicious things before we started going to Ojeda’s years ago, but now I can’t get enough of them. They’re like little tiny taco salads in a fried Christmas ornament. We should have a national holiday for the saintly person who invented these erogenous edibles, with pageantry and collectible trading cards. I can gnaw my way through several of them before my bulging stomach starts to raise the table off the floor, resulting in stability issues, with utensils and cellphones and vats of salsa and personal shame sliding precariously about.

6. Tequila makes me talk.

Before I even finished the first beverage, I was rambling away about anything that popped into my head. Anything. This is a change of pace for my partner and me, because he’s usually the one to share his thoughts with any person, place or thing that will listen, while I just sit there and nod from time to time. But dump some tequila down my throat and I will share every single thought that enters my alcohol-drenched brain. This is probably why my friendship stats fluctuate so wildly on social media.

7. Tequila and some people don’t mix.

I’m talking about YOU, Miss Bellow-Guffaw three tables over. Why the hell are you YELLING everything that you say? What’s up with that? Your equally-soused tablemate is right there. He can hear you just fine. There’s no need for this “raising the dead” business. You don’t need to be at that degree of sonic distortion unless you’re parting the Red Sea or you’re in labor. Inside voice, please.

And while we’re on the topic, Mr. Thump-Bang in the booth behind me, what can you possibly be doing that makes it sound and feel like you tried to hog-tie something at a rodeo and failed miserably? Perhaps the laws of physics are beyond your grasp, so let me break it down for you: We are sharing the same seatback, which means that your rambunctiousness has a negative effect on me. Could you possibly sit still for twenty seconds so I can successfully get this guacamole-laden chip into my mouth instead of inadvertently smashing it into the side of my head?

8. Music sung in a foreign language is pleasing when you’re buzzed.

Typically, mariachi music is not my favorite. It’s just too insistent. But with a bit of inebriation, I’m transported to another world. It was truly divine and beautiful. I actually shed a few tears over this one song, where Yolanda did something something with some huevos, and the people of the village were offended by this and she was shunned forever, forced to wear used clothing and get her own water from the well. It was so sad. I asked our server if there was a place I could send money. He brought me another margarita instead, and he said I could just give the money to him and he would pray for Yolanda.

9. Your plate does not have to be empty before rude people want to take it.

No, I am not ready for you to whisk this away. Look, there’s a little bit of rice over here, and at least two bites of refried beans, and part of a miracle puffed taco. This is a feast. There is no reason for you to be inquiring about the relocation of my tableware at this point. Yes, I understand that lately my focus has been on the straw in my margarita, but there’s no need for you to get demanding about my consumption process. When it’s time, I’ll ring a bell or throw something on the floor, okay? We’re going to tip you. Relax.

10. It’s much more fun when you aren’t the one who has to drive home after the margarita fest.

Terry has to pay attention and not kill people. All I have to do is sing and tell everybody what I think about unrelated topics like bratwurst and why Angelina Jolie’s lips are so big. So I did. All the way home. At one point, Terry was eyeing nearby cliffs with a desperate yearning in his eyes. I really wasn’t ready for a plunge into eternal darkness, so I eventually had to talk about things that might interest him as well, even though it pained me and ruined my conversational rhythm.

Finally, we made it to la casa, where I joyously switched from margaritas to beer. Because mixing types of alcohol is such a good idea. The next morning, my uvula was swollen to the size of a Buick, I had no concept of what my name might be, and I quietly begged for Death to take me now rather than on the installment plan. But all in all, it was a swell time, even though there may or may not be a pair of my underwear on the roof of Ojeda’s.

And I sure do love those puffed tacos. (Feed me, Seymour.)


Originally published in “The Sound and the Fury” on 01/27/11 and “Bonnywood Manor” on 02/25/15. Minimally revised and updated with extra flair for this post.

Note: Shout out, once again, to Embeecee for digging in the archives and finding an older post that possibly merits a second chance.


38 replies »

  1. Okay, Brian! I was laughing so loud at this and crying tears of joy. It is 2:32 a.m. where I am so I should be quiet. Unfortunately, I cannot. All those points you made are valid. I detest Satan spawn and I would have done the same thing if a hostess would have taken me to that hellish rugrat dominion.
    Tequila? Yes, please! You can do margaritas and I shall do shots chased with Ginger Ale or Tecate. The whole Ojeda experience sounded wonderful. I probably would have said something to Mr. Seatkicker. I have been known to do that. GREAT work!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Susan! I started this comment hoping to address your points with some degree of finesse and grace, but I’m fixated on this concept of a tequila shot with a ginger ale chaser. I have never heard of such, but I do love me a good ginger ale (some are NOT good) so now I’m trying to figure out what grocery stores around here might still be open AND proffer decent ginger ale. Naturally, we already have plenty of tequila on hand, a pronouncement which I’m sure surprises you not at all… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • I actually got the idea from an article I read on Sam Neill where he mentioned drinking Tequila and Ginger. The Ginger was Ginger beer. I just replaced that since I couldn’t find any with Ginger Ale. Good luck, Brian and let me know how it goes. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Really funny one. 🙂 Can relate to the point about kids. It is so true. Though I adore kids in general. But these types that wreck havoc wherever they go. I also prefer not to anywhere near them.
    Loved this post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. On #5 – those things are SO good. I’m trying to remember the last Mexican restaurant in my experience where they really made ’em right – but I’m drawing a blank. I know it wasn’t Ojeda’s. #9 is unfortunate. Makes me think the servers are in a hurry to get me out of there, get the tip, and make more money by thus increasing the number of customers served per evening. “Food” for thought — no pun intended.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I remember eating my first puffed taco at Ojeda’s and thinking, how did I not know about these things? What bad decisions did I make in my life that kept me away from them for so long? 😉


  4. Hahaha, “children of the corn tortilla”! Also, you have me wondering about Yolanda. Do you think she is faring better among her people now with all the pious prayers flowing copiously toward her as tequila does down your throat?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am also curious if the prayers uplifted Yolanda and her wretched clothing. Perhaps I need to go back to Ojeda’s to see if they play a new mariachi song that has a Yolanda update… 😉


  5. I try not to take it personally when a host or hostess tries to seat my wife and I next to a table which has several children standing on top of it…but at the same time…”what makes you think we’re good candidates for having a good time sitting there?” Anyone for that matter. We don’t have an Ojeda’s but at the Mexican places we do have it’s pretty much mandatory to hand you a margarita as you exit your vehicle in the parking lot…even if the engine hasn’t been turned off quite yet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Luckily, we have now been to our local Ojeda’s so many times (my FourSquare/Swarm app currently shows 76 visits, not kidding) that we just have to walk in the door and we are instantly escorted to a table as far away from the crowd as possible and assigned our favorite waiter. And said waiter will bring me a margarita swirl without having to say a word. Sometimes it really pays to be a frequent flyer… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh Em Gee MY second cousin Bucky Joe got arrested that one time at the Spittoon Festival!! Why ARE Angelina Jolies lips so big? At our local Mexican restaurant they have the BEST carnita’s..They are these big chunks of meat and they also have these little bits of crunchy heaven like maybe its deep fried?! I’m not sure but its amazing. I like my margarita in a big gulp.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just knew we were kindred spirits. This is the wondrous beauty of WordPress/blogging/people who maybe shouldn’t be unsupervised. We get to reach out and bump elbows with folks who have the same deep but possibly meaningless thoughts. (And now I must have some carnitas with crunchy bits. Must. Have. Some.)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I don’t know HOW I missed commenting on this when I read it YESTERDAY. I know I fell on the floor and writhed around and Huny came over to make sure I hadn’t died. Who would get her food if I did THAT? The first paragraph hooked me…there’s a phenomenon I see time to time in public places, which will now become blog fodder. You’re so INSPIRING sir!! You aren’t alone in loathing people and their whiny, usually damp, squealing children..I watched a woman (this was in church) with a really hyper 2 year old feed him SUGAR to ‘keep him quiet’. By the end of the meeting the freakin’ kid was bouncing off the walls… some people are too stupid to procreate, I hold with that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, you commented on the original post of this piece, which gave me both a warm fuzzy and the inspiration of digging something out of the archives instead of sitting my ass down and making myself come up with something new. (It happens.) Now, this procreation thing. Are you with me in thinking that there really needs to be more restrictive legislation when it comes to all that mess? I mean, yes, it’s an innate biological function, but come on. Some of us should just say no…


  8. Well, whiny loser time. Your Ojeda’s is much better than mine, save for equality in clientele. Up here? The portions are small, the beans are runny and everything starts with a solid foundation of salt. I mean salt lick con salsa. The same may be said of the Blue Goose just down the street, except for the parking lot there is full of bald spot gray haired ponytails and their hogs. Interpret that as you will. However, sans the name, the experience is much the same at a decent Mexican place that isn’t a satellite of the real one somewhere downtown or Southside. Children who may not have left the building with their parents, science experiments on the floor, tall, cold margaritas, sad music in a foreign tongue…We had to stop going to Don Pepe’s in Richardson. The booths are shallow, the aisles thin. When waiters and bus boys pass, there is enough contact that the sexual tension is palpable. On the last occasion a bus boy, a waitress and the solo troubadour intersected at our booth. In an effort to make way, the singing matador pushed himself into our table, his juevos and sausage sitting on the edge like leftover breakfast wrapped in black spandex while he was jolted repeatedly from behind by the other two trying to make it past him. Never missing a lick of “Guantanamera.” We haven’t returned. But this is Texas. Next sopapilla stop, please.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Brilliance. Nothing short of it. This comment has now become a keystone in a blog post I’ve been diddling with concerning some of the superior comments on this blog. (You may or may not have gotten the email.) Brace yourself.


  9. I’ve never heard of puffed tacos before, so I did an online search. Incredible! Where have these BEEN my whole life?

    Your point about #7 rings true with me, only I was the offending party… This was many years ago when I was going to Germany and I was trying to learn German. I borrowed tapes from the library and listened them at home, but I would turn the volume up loud so I could really hear the sound of the language.

    Well, one evening I was out with a bunch of friends, and one of them made the mistake of asking, “How is your German coming along?” I said it was splendid, and began spouting phrases. Sadly, because I listened to it at such a loud volume at home, I felt German should be shouted, and I began saying things like, “EIN BIER BITTE!” and “WO IST DER HUND?” I didn’t even notice when the restaurant fell silent, or the embarrassed looks on my friends’ faces. No, I merrily plowed along, shouting questions about directions to the airport and where was the women’s room.

    Really, it is amazing they remained my friends.

    Liked by 1 person

    • One, the puffed tacos (at least at our Ojeda’s location) really are little miracles. Two, your exuberant German experience was quite funny. I’m in the process of teaching myself Spanish, and I’m doing the same exact thing. I max the volume on the learning programs so I can clearly hear the inflections and intonations, which subsequently results in me bellowing my limited phrases when I am around my bilingual friends here in Texas. Said friends have now realized that they should NEVER ask about my progress. Additionally, reports from the field indicate that I apparently make disturbing facial contortions whilst bellowing. I’m just trying to get those inflections right, but my dedication to the art is not fully appreciated… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Hmm. I’ve never experienced the delight that is Ojeda’s. After doing some research, I think the AZ counterpart may be Macayo’s, in which case all of these statements ring true. And they do have marvelous margaritas, though I’m more a fajita gal than a puffed taco chick. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  11. And your friend in friendly downtown Grenoble bursts into a spontaneous rendition of ‘Suddenly Seymour’ to the unfettered delight of her high-born French Neighbours – or perhaps it was the absinthe that have me an autistic inability to read their facial expressions accurately.

    Liked by 1 person

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