It used to be, if you had a problem with service at a restaurant, you spoke with the manager. But Maryland couple Aiyi-nah Ford and Torian Brown didn’t have that option — since it was the manager of the Tastee Diner who kicked them out.
Ford and Brown say they were just holding each other (not even kissing!) when the manager, Lisa Wilkes, asked them to leave. His reason? Tastee was a “family establishment.” Nevermind it was 2 o’clock in the morning, and it’s doubtful Jon & Kate brought all eight of their children. But Wilkes says the pair were more than holding; they were fondling!
So what’d they do about it? Ford used her blog radio show to call for others to join them in demonstrating at the restaurant on Wednesday night, where some 40 folks showed up. And then: they filed a complaint.
Except now the restaurant says it has security footage that shows they were acting more explicit than they admitted. Namely, they were caressing. Scary!
“They had their bodies pressed and rubbed up against one another, and at one point, one of their faces goes down in the other girl’s breast, and we found that to be inappropriate,” General Manager John Littleton said.
The diner released several minutes of surveillance video, which it contends shows the inappropriate behavior and justifies the night manager’s decision.
“If you start touching each other and going beyond the point of kissing and things start to become a little bit X-rated, we’re going to ask you to stop,” said Lisa Wilkes, whose family owns three popular diners. “And if you don’t stop, we’re going to ask you to leave.”
The diner is willing to sit down with the women to discuss the incident, Littleton said. The couple said they were embarrassed and have not been offered an apology.
They do not intend to eat at the restaurant again, but they have filed a complaint with the Maryland Commission on Human Relations. They said the commission has opened a preliminary investigation.
But as we learn, from San Francisco to El Paso, it’s never about the interaction between two people who love each other that restaurants really have a problem with. It’s that they’re of the same sex. To Tastee’s credit, they’re at least willing to sit down with the women to discuss what happened. Ford and Brown should accept the invitation.