Preparing to Tie the Knot with a Chain of Chains

cheesecake factory: white chocolate caramel latte cheesecake
We’re in the thick of it now. With a wedding less than two months away, at least one day each weekend is dedicated to bridal bliss *roll eyes*. Okay, so as much as I whine about this whole wedding baloney, I don’t really hate it all that much, but it’s so much more fun to be bitter, isn’t it? ;)

Spending the day shuttling around town on errands, then shopping for shoes and makeup and talking about sugar and spice and everything nice about girlie wedding stuff, there isn’t much thought put toward food. So we fall back to the things that are familiar and reasonably reliable. Chains. Why do we love to hate chains? I almost appreciate the mindlessness of eating at chains during these tortuous escapades around town. Almost. Thank god it’ll be over by September.

Starting obscenely early on Saturday, caffeine is quite in order, especially when the bulk of the morning is spent in a tailor’s tiny store discussing boning (what the?!?) in the bodice and bustier tops for a maternity bridesmaid dress. Oh my god, coffee. Now. Two nonfat café au lait, plus one decaf and a plain croissant from a coffee chain. Hey, give me some credit. I may reduce myself to chains all day, but I do have my lower limits. We went to the Coffee Bean, though the way the Coffee Bean is expanding across California, I’m becoming a little suspicious of its aspirations to be like…the other one (whose name I cannot type). And even though CB is the reason we have 800 calorie ice-blended coffee drinks that are really liquid desserts, I will say that they probably had good intentions way back when they were the first to invent it. It’s just unfortunate that a simple ice blended mocha has evolved into…strawberries and cream tea.

Off we go to run more girlie errands, and when we finally realize it’s lunch time, we at least do better than the mall food court. Does Sbarro exist anywhere outside of a mall food court? No? *phew* We end up at Islands for lunch. I can’t figure out whether I thought Islands was absolutely brilliant when I first moved to California simply because it was so…California, or because I was just young and didn’t really know any better anyway. No matter. It was actually a refreshing break to order mindlessly from a menu that I’ve seen a hundred times (and with prices that have increased quite a bit since the last time I was there), and munch on my favorites: nachos and fries. We would have gotten chili cheese fries, but we’re on a wedding diet – ha!

As if that weren’t enough, we ended up at the cheesiest of all chains for dinner. I love to hate the Cheesecake Factory. I hate their ad-laden bible of a menu, but then again, they do have something for everyone. It may not be something good, but it is something. I hate their food, but damn those avocado egg rolls sure are tasty. I hate that one order is a large enough portion for four people, but I admit that leftover garlic mashed potatoes re-heated at 4 am after a night of debauchery is great hangover prevention. Heck, if you split a salad for dinner, then the monstrous slice of White Chocolate Caramel Latte cheesecake isn’t so bad. That’s the newest flavor cheesecake, but let’s be honest here, after a certain point, they all sort of sound and taste the same, no? *sigh* Whatever happened to just a modest piece of plain and simple cheesecake with some fresh berries? Ah well, just as long as it doesn’t eventually take the route of the White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle to the freezer at Ralph’s. *sigh* Though out of the freezer from the market, the cheesecake doesn’t come with that ridiculous beehive hair-do of whipped cream garnish. Ridiculous.

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