Utah – The beehive state
Flats. Have you heard of them? They’re a Potbelly sandwich made with less bread and therefore flatter then your usual sandwich.
My teen ran into Potbelly to pick up a sandwich and came out with a story….
“Mom, Utah isn’t flat.”
OK, so it wasn’t a question.
Potbelly is selling these sandwiches called flats, he explained, and on a store chalkboard a graphic compares the sandwich to a flat tire, flat shoes, flat screen, flat top, flat iron, a rolling pin that is flattening dough…and Utah. “But Utah isn’t flat,” he asserted. “So I asked the server behind the counter why Utah was included in the flat comparison and she said because the state was flat. I told her that Utah was a mountain state in the Southwest region of the United States. It’s not flat.” (I knew those trips with my dear dad and sweet mom would pay off.)
I asked him how the Potbelly server reacted to the geography lesson.
“She argued that the state looked flat.” Clearly Cole was not impressed with her style of debate. “Looks like” does not a fact make.
I asked him if he had taken a picture of the chalkboard with the drawings. No, he had been too busy trying to clear up the misconception of Utah’s geography. So I asked him if he’d like me to go in, buy a shake and take a picture. He did.
I’m a blogger. There was more to this story, or there soon would be.
As I turned the car around, Cole admonished me not to park in front of Potbelly again, lest my undercover work be compromised. So I pulled into a parking spot a few rows over and slunk out of my car to complete my mission. (Insert the theme song from the Donny & Marie Show*).
I noticed the chalkboard making the flat comparisons while the server was taking another order, and was able to take pictures unnoticed before placing my order for a shake. While the server made my shake, I wondered out loud about the flat-Utah connection. The server explained that the state was flat on top, and so when people think of Utah they associate it with other things that are flat. But what about all the mountains and skiing?
“Well,” she said. “The whole state isn’t on a mountain and not everyone skis,” she volleyed back at me defensively.
I agreed and wondered if the sandwich might be more accurately be compared to the state’s Bonneville Salt Flats but the server explained that the potbellies flat has less salt than a regular sandwich. Ok, time to let it go and move on. I picked up my shake and remarked that I was probably the only person who would notice the compassion anyway. (OK, I’m a little evil.)
“No,” she said. “Not five minutes before, some guy asked the same questions.”
“Really!” I exclaimed. We both agreed that was very odd.
She then said she would talk to her manager in the morning about changing the picture. I told her Florida is the flattest U.S. state (don’t ask me how I know that—probably El Morno research) and reminded her that pancakes are flat. I’m helpful that way.
Returning to the car, my mission completed, I showed Cole the picture and shared my conversation. My teen was amused and pleased that Utah’s reputation as a mountain state would be left unsullied.
Utah, we did our best.
Odd Loves Company,
*In case you’re not old enough to understand this reference: Donny and Marie are from Utah and had a show way back in the 70’s.