Saturday, January 16, 2010

No such thing as a free lunch? How about a really cheap dinner?

My apologies first to Weaver since Pizza Hut was once a place of employment and she might not want to read about it here. Sorry babe.

When the kids were little I knew every restaurant in town that had a "Kids Eat Free" night. I could map them all out for you. Red Robin on Tuesdays. Bennigan's on Wednesdays. Friendly's on Fridays. Bellacino's on Sunday. Then four times a year we got loads of free meals in the report card envelopes. Eat' n Park. Ponderosa. Applebee's. Friday's. We were set.

But once your kids stop looking like they are under 10 (no matter how you dress them or coach them to act) all those free meals stop coming. Once your kids are out of elementary school, getting coupons for good grades comes to an end. My kids were seeing the inside of restaurants less and less.

Then comes the very bad day when the hostess eyes your kids and asks, "Kids menus?" and they both say no. Now you are taking four adults out to eat and that equals an uncomfortably big bill. Eating out for them is pretty much over.

All this sets the stage for our trips to Pizza Hut. Every now and then on a Friday, especially if I've worked a lot during the week, we like to go to Pizza Hut. I'll come right out and say that I like Pizza Hut pizza, but it is not pizza. It looks like pizza, it smells like pizza and it has all the ingredients of a pizza, but it's something different. There's no other way to describe it except that The Man agrees with me and that's why I love him so much.

We go on Fridays because there is a waitress working there named Kat. Kat is our secret weapon to affordable eating out with the kids. The first time we met her we all ordered Pepsi and she suggested a 2 liter bottle for the table. That might not seem like much but that little move saved us $8.

When we go to Pizza Hut and are unlucky enough not to get Kat, the server will tell us that they are not allowed to give out 2 liters to tables or that they are out of 2 liters at the moment. Blah, blah, blah we say to them.

Right now Pizza Hut has a $10 any size, any topping special going on. Combine that with our secret drink special and the whole visit was only $13.12. Woo-hoo!

Postscript: I'm going to give out a shout out here to Jessica at Friendly's as well. For years our bill said that we ordered four waters (free) instead of the drinks she actually served us. Making friends with waitresses is well worth the effort.


jk said...

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Weaver said...

first of all, free food in grade cards?!?! i never got those. dang, i'm signing the kids up for school tomorrow! ;)

second, i used to tell people to order by the glass because there were no free refills on pitchers and the pitchers were too small to fill four glasses. i've been thinking about ordering from the hut, but haven't cause they don't deliver here and it's just too hard (and expensive) to take us all out. I do use my pizza hut, hand tossed pans when we make pizza though :) why yes. i do use a set of pan grippers to get them out of the oven, too.

right before the first big move, i worked friday nights. i would randomly give away my employee discount to someone i knew or who looked like they needed it or to someone who was just plain nice to me. always made me smile when they did. in fact, i kind of miss it.

Heather said...

Which Pizza Hut are you going to? I thought the one by the mall was closed? J and I used to go there all of the time when we were first dating. I'm not a big fan of chicken wings, but PH wings and a pitcher of cheap beer is like a little bit of heaven.

J. said...

JK: Honestly? Every other post I write is my about my cats or what I built with Legos. Not exactly cutting edge stuff!

Weaver: Free kids meals in reports cards is right! Report card day rocked around here. I love that you gave out your discount. That is so sweet!

Heather Meg: There's a PH on the other side of town, on Broad. I'll go mess up a bunch of wings with you anytime.