There is a certain class of dining establishment that is ubiquitous across the American landscape. These are the "mid-range" restaurant chains that sprouted up across the nation in the 1980s and 90s in order to serve the tastes of the aspiring yet faltering middle classes who had neither the time nor money to spend on higher quality fare, but wanted an option they felt was better than fast food and more "upscale" than the local mom-and-pop eateries that had supported the entertainment economy for so many decades. These chains not only drove many local restauranteurs out of business, but pulled the overall national food quality levels into line somewhere between mediocre and bland.
After Katie and Seth exchanged a few text messages, arrangements were made and he had naturally chosen one of these godawful chain restaurants: that tribute to the lowest common denominator in American Cuisine known as Crabbapple's. Oh, and look! The walls were covered with re-creations of trinkets and signage from the Great Depression through the 1960s. Quelle suprise! Never mind the fact that O'Keefe had probably been exposed to all sorts of interesting cuisine from all over the world—no, he just had to choose the blandest among America's many bland dining offerings. The worst of it was that even though it had been many years since she'd been to the Columbus area, Katie knew it was full to the brim with high-quality dining options. Oh well—at least they have a bar.
Katie walked into the abominable excuse for a restaurant, ignoring the hostess and going straight for the bar. She had chosen to wear a bright blue cocktail dress with a mid-thigh hemline and a deep-cut front. She hoped that with the combination of strong drink and a bit of flirtation she'd succeed in keeping O'Keefe distracted enough to talk freely.