Confession: I have a really hard time deciding what to order in restaurants

Problem is I go in there not knowing what I want but figuring I’ll just look at the menu and figure out what sounds good. But then everything sounds good! Or not everything, maybe, but a lot of things.

The other day I was at Il Fornaio in Palo Alto and I was like, Man oh man, there’s just way too many great choices. Do I want the wood-fired pizza? If so which one? Quattro formaggio with herbed rosemary crust? I wasn’t even thinking of pizza but when I look at the way they describe it, well maybe now I do. But then there’s the Fungo Ripieno, with portobello mushrooms serving as a platform for smaller regional mushrooms and fresh buffalo mozzarella cheese. Gosh! Or there’s Costicine d’Agnello, a rack of lamb drizzled with first-cold-pressed virgin olive oil and sprinkled with thyme. Do I want ham-and-fontina stuffed breast of chicken in a Dijon mustard brandy sauce? A veal chop with spinach and parmesan with tarragon bechamel white-truffle oil? Or maybe a hearty soup? Polenta? Risotto? Then there are the appetizers to deal with, and the salads, and desserts and coffees. And wine! My goodness if there’s wine to be decided upon I could be there all night.

I know it drives my wife nuts, but I really, really, really need to talk to the waiter or someone on staff and find out every last thing about every last thing on the menu, including every ingredient and how the dish is cooked and I may even need to visit the kitchen and see how they do it, and then I need some time to think about it, so that I can make sure I choose the right dish. Because I’d hate to make the wrong decision. I guess it’s my engineering background. I’m just a stickler for detail and for information. To me information is like oral sex, you can never have too much. Ha! Get it?! For the record, I don’t really engage in oral sex (hello! hygiene! think what comes out of there!) but you get the idea. I’m a little slow and deliberate, and I tend to mull things over for (Enough. Jesus! Cut it here. Ed.)