When invited to dinner with the boss, people typically try to be on their best behavior, especially if the boss in question happens to be their spouse's boss. Well, this husband and wife were invited to the home of the wife's boss and even though she warned him to be on his best behavior, his conduct left a lot to be desired. As it often happens with married couples, both parties had their own distinctive perspective about everything that went down and only by taking both perspectives can the full story be known.
A few years ago, the wife, who we'll call Dee, started a new job and was excited to be a part of her new company. Things were going well at the office and Dee's boss invited her over for dinner and suggested that she bring her husband, Dennis.
"I was delighted when my boss - who I had been trying to establish a rapport with - invited me and my husband over to her home for dinner," Dee remembered.
Well, to be honest, Dee was mostly delighted about receiving the offer, but was a bit nervous about how her husband would act. See, her husband was...well, the "sweetest," but had a lengthy track record of making a fool of himself.
Because of this, Dee was worried about him coming along. "By the time the day of the dinner arrived, I had become so anxious about it that I actually floated the idea by my boss that I wasn't sure if he would be able to make it. She was clearly taken aback and responded: 'Oh no! I really hope he can, I have a dinner for three all ready to go.'"
Upon seeing her boss's dismay, Dee assured her that she was sure Dennis would find a way to be there. After everything that happened, though, she wished she had followed her first instinct.
Knowing that he had a tendency to mess up at the most inopportune times, Dennis was not surprised when his wife gave him a pep talk on the drive over to the dinner.
"On the drive over, my wife reiterated many times to me just how important it was to make a good impression," Dennis said. "I scoffed and arrogantly informed my silly wife that I always make good impressions."
These words would later come to haunt Dennis as he made quite a first impression, though good wouldn't necessarily be the right word to use in this case.
When the couple made it to the house, Dee's boss - a single woman in her 50s - welcomed them in for a round of pre-dinner drinks and appetizers, and Dennis thought they were really hitting it off.
"She laughed at my well-timed, perfectly-appropriate jokes and my wife seemed pleased," he said.
The night, however, would quickly take a turn for the worse with the arrival of the main course...
After they finished their salads, Dee's boss retreated to the kitchen to bring out the main course for the evening: a "nice, big juicy steak" for each of them. Dennis was ecstatic, initially, but his tone quickly changed as he cut into his steak and discovered that it was extremely undercooked and was practically mooing.
"Now, I've had my fair share of rare steak. I prefer medium, but I can handle rare," Dennis said. "This was several-minutes-on-a-hot-grill short of rare. I probably could've resuscitated the cow, had I tried."
Instead of eagerly digging into his meal, like Dee was, Dennis sat there fidgeting with his knife and fork, worrying about how he was going to get away with not eating this steak.
Should he claim to be a vegan? "No, I'd already feigned great enthusiasm upon seeing the steak."
He had to find a way out of this situation. He had to find a way to get rid of the steak. Dee had taken notice of his nerves, if not the source of the dilemma. "It was one of those things where you know something strange is happening in your peripheral, but you're not sure what... you have to look over and focus your gaze to really comprehend it," she recalled. When she couldn't see anything physically wrong with him, she turned her attention back to her "deliciously cooked steak."
When Dee's boss excused herself to take care of the dessert preparations in the kitchen, Dennis knew he had to act...fast. He frantically looked around the room to try and find somewhere to dump the unwanted and undercooked steak.
"As I looked across the fancy dining room table at the open window of this third-story apartment... a cartoon light bulb appeared over my head," he said. "I knew I had to be decisive, realizing that she could return at any moment."
Dennis grabbed the steak, gently shook off the juice, and executed a perfect throw right through the center of the open window. But it wasn't an open window.
Instead of sailing through the window and out into the world, the steak instead hit what Dennis described as the "cleanest fricking window you've ever seen in your life." The cleanest, that is, until his nearly raw slab of steak slammed up against it and slowly slid down leaving a trail of bloody juice in its wake.
Dee had seen the build-up to the throw out of the corner of her eye, but when she finally comprehended what Dennis was about to do, she wasn't fast enough to stop him. "He threw his steak - baseball style - across the room straight into the dining room window. It hit the window, making a loud noise, and slowly slid down."
Although Dee was surprised by her husband's action, she wasn't at all shocked. She had grown used to her husband making terrible decisions, but he was not an actual idiot and usually had a method to this madness.
"Usually when he does dumb stuff, I at least understand what he's thinking. There's usually some semblance of rhyme or reason to his action," she said.
But in this case, she was just absolutely dumbfounded and couldn't believe her eyes.
"I couldn't wrap my head around what was going on," she added. "I stared at him with what must have been the most confused look and watched as he stared back at me, an expression of utter horror painted across his face."
To his credit, Dennis knew he was in deep doo-doo with his wife, even though he thought he had a great excuse for why he'd done what he'd done, not that Dee was aware of his reasoning.
For the first time in their marriage, Dee could not make sense of what her husband had just done, though that was quickly the last in a long line of worries. "It suddenly sunk in that it didn't matter why he did what he did," Dee said. "He did it and we were all about to come face to face with a very awkward situation."
However, she wasn't afforded the luxury of time as she wasn't the only one who had heard the steak hit and slide down the window. As Dee and Dennis stared at each in horrified silence, they heard the unmistakeable clack of Dee's boss's heels as she hurried back into the room to figure out what that loud noise was.
When Dee's boss came back into the room to see what was going on, Dennis said she took in the scene: the trail of blood on the once clean window now leading to a thick piece of bloody meat sitting on the window sill, his empty plate, and then gave Dennis what he described as an "inquisitive, puzzled look."
Dee remembered feeling a rush of anger flush through her face as she was coming to terms with her husband's stupidity. She initially considered helping her husband find a way out of the situation, but the combination of her boss' arrival and her mental exhaustion left her not wanting to help get out of the bed he made.
"My boss walks in and sees the steak lying on the window sill and there's the longest and most awkward pause where we all just sit there frozen," Dee said. "My boss and I are staring at my husband, forcing the ball into his court, as the cringe just hangs in the air like an ocean fog."
Dennis finally managed to mutter some incoherent garbage about being clumsy and even tried to get Dee to back him up, but she was having none of it and left him "out to dry in the deafening silence." She couldn't wait to hear what excuses he'd have for why he'd done what he'd done.
As he picked up the steak with what little dignity he had left, Dennis began babbling at high speeds, trying to think of anything to say to excuse what he'd done without insulting his wife's boss' cooking.
"I just didn't know what to say," he wrote. "It felt like a minute of silence but was probably three or four seconds. Finally, the best I could manage was, 'I...I'm so sorry. I am such a clutz! I don't know, I was just cutting it and i-it slipped, just ask my wife! I really am a clutz, right honey? (no help coming from that direction). I will clean this up...I can't believe this... I am so sorry.'"
Both women continued to stare at Dennis like he had escaped from "the loony bin," as he "smeared the blood around the window with my cloth napkin, dusted off the steak, and continued to mutter my incoherent explanation."
"I knew no one was buying the story," he added. "I knew what I had to do. I sheepishly returned to my seat and proceeded to eat every bite of that disgusting, cold, chewy, bloody, raw steak."
As Dee and her boss awkwardly progressed through the rest of the dinner with lite conversation regarding life and work, Dennis remained quiet, staring down at his plate and at the steak he so ineffectively tried to dispose of. He had no idea what his wife was going to do to him when they got to the car.
After they all finished their dessert and said their goodbyes, Dee and Dennis left the apartment and got back into their car for the long drive home.
"As soon as we got to the car, my husband turned into a nervous chatterbox trying to explain himself," Dee recalled. "It turns out the idiot didn't like the way his steak was cooked (rare) and - get this - he thought the window was open. My husband, ladies and gentleman, tried to chuck his steak out a three-story window. He thought that was a reasonable solution to being served an under-cooked steak."
The couple eventually put the incident in the far reaches of their shared memory, but it was something that Dee would never forget. When it came time for the Christmas party later that year, which her boss was hosting at her newly-built home, Dee didn't even entertain the idea of bringing her husband along with her. With the way the previous dinner had ended, who could blame her?
"My best friend, Jennie, was my plus one," Dee explained. She might love her husband, but Dee definitely knows that he's not exactly fit for polite company.