Philip Rosenthal, the American television writer, producer and creator of the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond and presenter of food and travel documentaries I’ll Have What Phil’s Having and Somebody Feed Phil, says: “We live life in restaurants, it’s the centre of social life, where we celebrate with family and friends, make new friends, travel without travelling, and of course, eat.”
That is so true. We go mall shopping and eventually head for the food court. We go to the movies and eat popcorn and ice cream in between the scenes. We go to a coffeehouse and huddle together over laptops, coffees and croissants. We break for lunch and share our meals in the office cafeteria. Not to mention all the dinners and parties we have with family and friends in restaurants and outdoor venues.
We live life in restaurants because in a way life tends to revolve around food and conversations. It’s where people unwind, deals are struck, proposals are made, relationships are broken, jokes are told, laughter is plentiful, special occasions are celebrated and fresh memories created.
So much beyond eating happens in a restaurant. From celebrations to heart-to-heart talks, it’s the go-to place for social and emotional rendezvous, making new connections and deepening old ties.
In the few hours we spend in restaurants, we forget our worries and share joyous moments over food and drink with the people we meet without travelling. In that sense restaurants are a comfort zone of food, relaxation and pleasant familiarity.