I was having dinner the other day with my friends Brendan, Sarah, and their unborn fetus (whom I refer to as Malachi) at a Mexican restaurant. "I want either a fajita or a quesadilla," I said. Then, skimming down the menu, and saw it - Fajita Chicken Quesadilla. Perfection. A smiling waitress took our orders and within minutes we had our food. As I tucked into my exactly-what-I-had-in-mind meal, it occurred to me: Mexican is the new Diner Food. You walk in knowing what you want and knowing you can get it. This standardization is comfortable as well as practical - even in a group of relative strangers, going out for Mexican is a pretty safe bet.
That got me to thinking... what's the new Mexican food? Probably Chinese - almost everyone eats it, but it's still exotic enough to make the meal feel a bit special. "Let's go out for Chinese," you might say. "Shake things up a bit." That would make Indian the new Chinese food, Thai the new Indian, and - I dunno - Korean the new Thai. Then again, as Brendan very wisely pointed out ... what's the new Korean food?
P.S. Obligatory lyric reference:
"Now you're about to get cut up or get cut down
It's all about the know how all just a matter of taste
Stop telling me the way I gotta play. Too much food on my plate."
Too Much Food, Jason Mraz