A Cautionary Tale of Tomatoes

I do believe the Verisign discussion and the opinions of operators is very much on-topic. At the same time, while I participated in the fun of tomato discussions, people are right in saying it won't play well to media.

Perhaps still on topic, if we consider protest and HOW it's received, I had a strange public experience involving tomatoes (well, tomato juice).

It was many years ago, when I was an OSI protocol evangelist. Mind you, OSI is still the answer, but we still haven't figured out the question. I had to give a tutorial in San Francisco, and had a nasty case of laryngitis.

The only thing that kept my throat working was constantly sipping hot soup. So, I asked the hotel to make soup available for me, at the podium, from 9AM on. They were resistant, and said they didn't do soup until lunchtime. Exasperated, I croaked out that they could heat up a can of tomato juice, give a dash of tobasco and pepper, and send it to me in a pitcher.

To get the full effect, you need to understand that the room was set up in theater style, with a central aisle. You also have to understand that while this was San Francisco, apparently the waiters were all unemployed actors, ala Los Angeles.

About 9:15, the double doors swung open, and a waiter rolled a white covered cart, featuring a pitcher of steaming red liquid and a single glass, to me. In a fairly good Transylvanian access, the waiter croaked out "your nourishment, Sir," and theatrically slunk out.

My students looked at me very, very strangely for the rest of the class. So, I can testify tomato products can backfire.