Last night, Kat and I celebrated our wedding anniversary—a month late, true, but that was the soonest we had enough free time—with a romantic evening and dinner at Classics. If you visit the restaurant’s Web site, you’ll discover that it plays some loud background music. It’s relatively tasteful piano music, but still there. The same is true of the restaurant itself, as it happens. It wasn’t quite as loud, though, and was performed by a live pianist. He was pretty good.
Of course, he played all the usual suspects. About five minutes after we were seated, he started in on a rendition of “Send In The Clowns”. Kat looked at me and said, “What, do all these guys get the same songbook?” I tend to think so, although to his credit he managed not to play “Memories”.
Partway through the meal, we asked the server if the pianist took requests. We were assured that he did, so we requested our wedding song: “The Christmas Song”. She left to pass on the request and we got back to our food, one of the middle courses in the chef’s tasting menu. As the next song emerged from the piano, I said to Kat, “Great, he’s still working that songbook. Now it’s ‘Don’t Cry For Me, Argentina’.”
But as the chorus came around a second time, I suddenly realized something was amiss. Cocking my head to one side, I re-focused on the music. There was definitely something off-kilter. “I don’t think that’s ‘Argentina’ after all,” I said. Kat, looking puzzled herself, agreed. It was definitely a song I’d heard before, but I was having trouble placing it. Then, on the third round of the chorus, my eyes widened. I looked at Kat; from her expression, I could tell she’d gotten it too.
“I think it’s—” she started to say in an incredulous tone.
“I’m pretty sure you’re right,” I said. “We have to ask him.”
A few minutes later, we had our chance. The pianist came over to our table and said he wanted to ask about our request, since apparently he was concerned about the other patrons’ reaction to hearing “The Christmas Song” in August. He was curious to hear how that got to be our song for a summer wedding.
“I’ll tell you,” I said, “but first I have to ask a question. What was the song you played just now?”
He was immediately embarrassed, and fluttered his hands as he responded. “Oh, well, my memory isn’t, I mean one of the servers… it was just a little bit from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.”
Kat and I burst into laughter and shared a high-five.