My mother, after picking me up at the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport (I kid you not), announced that she and I would have dinner at an old family favorite of a restaurant, Konefal’s. Which was fine with me because I had asked if we could go to some place that I had not been in a while.
Picture a place with fake wood paneling, vinyl-upholstered straight-back chairs, stained, plywood booths. A hand-laminated paper sign behind the cash register reads: “Potato Pancake Batter, $3.00 per quart.” The smoking section is a nebulous section in the rear center of the restaurant.
Konefal’s Bar occupies the front part of the building, a separate area entirely. A full bar, I thought.
The waitress, a bone-thin middle-aged woman with dark brown hair helmet arrives. “Can I get you something to drink?”
“Dirty Martini, please,” I answer, before I realized my mouth was moving.
“Uhhh, what is that, exactly?”
I explain to her what makes it dirty. “How about that,” she says.
So, besides having no dirty martinis here in Northeastern Pennsylvania, there are other things I’ve observed:
- there aren’t many shaved heads
- but the number of bad haircuts—especially on men—makes up for it
- everyone over 25 is married and wedding-banded
- everyone is blue eyed and transparent-skinned (like me)
- turns out, I really am the only gay person in the world!