Saturday, October 4, 2008

Fish Nazi and The Unabomber

With Kaye and Val in town, we went yesterday afternoon to one of our favorite West Seattle hangs, Sunfish on Alki, for a lunch of oysters and fish and chips.

I love the cod there, fresh and flaky, and the simple atmosphere of the small beach-side space. But there's something about the brothers who run the joint that always has reminded me of that famous "Seinfeld" episode, "The Soup Nazi" -- about the demanding guy with the perfect soup who would punish offending customers by shouting, "No soup for you!"

Here's a sample:

Nothing quite that extreme at Sunfish, but the brothers (I'm sorry I don't know their names) are pretty stern dudes, and woe betide the poor newbie who whips out a credit card or asks for more than one tartar sauce.

The last time I was there, a month or so ago, the owner was unaccountably nice to me. Nothing unusual by normal business standards, but he smiled and asked how my day was going. I even mentioned it to Michelle that night, that's how out of character it was.

So cut to yesterday. As I put in our order, the Fish Nazi smiled again (what?) and asked if I like to go to Las Vegas and play in poker tournaments. Wowie, he's looking into my soul! But then I remembered I was wearing my gray hooded sweatshirt with the World Poker Tour logo. When I said that yeah, I do like to play cards in Vegas, he got all excited.

"You're that guy with the sweatshirt, on the TV. With the name ... what is it?"

Oh, I said, you mean The Unabomber? That would be Phil Laak, the poker pro known as The Unabomber for his standard getup of hoodie and sunglasses. Other than the sweatshirt there's really not much resemblance and I told Fish Nazi that I'm not him, but he got all excited and asked a bunch of questions about poker and pointed me out to his brother, busy cooking.

"It's that poker guy."

Weirdly, the little episode of mistaken identity made my day. That and the fish and chips and the nice company. I went out to the Muck last night, while Michelle and Kaye were having a girl date, and nobody there mistook me for a poker pro. If anything I was the fish with chips. I lost nearly $150, never really got close to winning.

No soup for me.

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