4th of July at the Shore

4th of July at the shore was like wo. It was awesome except for being 101 degrees the first 2 days, which if you don’t know, is so hot that it’s humanly impossible to sleep. And also except for the traffic, whereby the ~10 minute drive from the campground to Ocean City (NJ) took an hour every time.  That ridiculous bridge across the bay needs about 19 more lanes, as do all the streets on the peninsula for that matter.  Oh, and also except for the ~15 hispanic people on the site across from us, who smoked marijuana and blasted crazy Mexican music all day and all night.

On 2 consecutive nights, I ate at the worst and best restaurants in existence.  Obediah’s, in Ocean City NJ, is to be avoided at all costs.  We ate there in the "crabhouse" which is just a pseudonym (a filty lying one at that) for "the bar".  It was noisy and smoky so right off, you know it’s gonna be crappy.  So we wait for over an hour and finally get seated in the bar room.  Our waitress Barb clearly hates us and/or her job because in the middle of writing our appetizers down, she rudely says "I’m gonna give you a few minutes" and walks away.  Just because one of us needed a second to decide something.  For the next 15 minutes, she doesn’t return.  She passes by plenty of times, though.  She apparently doesn’t want to bring us the drinks and appetizers we ordered already.  When she passes and we ask, she gives a curt "Ok" and continues on her evil way.

That was the way of things for the whole of the evening.  We asked 3 times for horseradish sauce, and she told us that she needed to "go find some".  What does that mean??  Every table around us had it.  We finally got it not from the waitress, but by asking the people next to us if they were done with theirs.  To which they replied, "Sure, and take our soup crackers too, because you’re not going to get the waitress to refill them!"  So we weren’t the only angry patrons.  When we asked for a water, it took 3 times for one and then 2 more times for another.  It also took 3 requests for iced tea and 2 for lemonade before we got them.  I’m not saying 3 requests with 30 seconds in between.  We’re talking literally 10 and 15 minutes before she finally brings what you ask for.  And for the iced tea, it wasn’t Barb who brought it, it was the manager, who we saw walking around and asked for help.  The refills of water were warm and lacking ice.

There was no soap in the ladies’ bathroom.  So I told a waitress and she said she’d take care of it.  15 minutes later, still no soap.  Again, I had to get the manager, who finally personally refilled the soap.  In the tiny men’s room, some selfish old man was smoking, so I had to prop the door open with the trash can to avoid dying of cancer while I washed my hands.

It was easily the worst dining experience I’ve ever had.  I’m not exaggerating.  No contest, this was the worst.

Then, tonight on the way home from the shore, I ate dinner at Maggiano’s in King of Prussia.  I cannot overstate how wonderful this restaurant is.  It’s an Italian place with family-size portions, and it’s not much more expensive than, say, Outback Steakhouse or Olive Garden or Carrabba’s.  But the food... the only way to describe it is amazing.  I ordered Chicken Mushroom Cannelloni, and it was superb.  And the architecture of the building was beautiful.  It’s got high ceilings, and you can eat on a balcony on the upper level, or outside if you wish.  The staircases are wide solid wood with thick carpet down the middle.  There are giant rooms off to the sides that give the place a neat atmosphere.  Even the bathrooms are neat... the toilet paper holders, for instance, are silvery metal creatures that stand on the floor!  It’s a franchise, so you may have one near you... if you do, be sure to check it out.

Posted by Anthony on 7 replies


01. Jul 9, 2002 at 10:41am by Margie Souder:

Hey Anthony,
First of all, Rolly sent me a link to your page yesterday so I checked it out. It’s pretty impressive. I am amazed at your skills with computer technology and your creative side really shines through here, too. Despite knowing you for quite awile now, I don’t feel comfortable saying that I really know you. Hopefully we can do more things like camping excursions and biking on the VFP-Philly trail. Anyway, you obviously put alot of time and energy into this whole operation and keep up with it which keeps it real. I give you a lot of credit for expressing some of your deepest thoughts here. They inspired so much thought for me.
Second of all, in reference to Obediah’s, it was a horrendous dining experience without a doubt. As someone with some serving experience, I think I have perspective from both sides and I still can not justify the terrible service we were given. I do think we should all write the manager or owner or something. We should not have had to pay so much for such a meal. I must  go back to work, but I’ll KIT. Thanks for the inspiring material! Keep it up!

02. Jul 9, 2002 at 3:07pm by Mommie:

I tried not to, but by the time I got to the end of your tirade about that awful restaurant I did have to laugh out loud. Not at what you went thru but at the way you described it all.  I really think you should send this exact letter to them.  Restaurant owners and managers WANT to know about the problems.  They can’t fix it if they aren’t told.  Just not going back won’t send the message because there are always new tourists coming to town who will walk in without any foreknowledge from previous customers. 
Also, I can verify your enjoyment of Maggiano’s since you brought home the ’doggie bag’ and let me sample the chicken scallopini.  It was truly awesome!  Thanks!
Anyway, what about the FUN times?  Did you have any fun at the beach and elsewhere?????
p.s.  You also should have let the campground management know about the disturbance from the other campers (ethnic origins notwithstanding).

03. Jul 10, 2002 at 12:32am by Anthony:

Hey Margie, thanks for posting! And for saying all that nice stuff      : )    I’m glad you found it inspiring and thought-provoking; that’s what it’s here for.

Yeah, I do put a lot of work into my site, for exactly that reason -- it keeps it real and interesting.  It gets boring going to a site that never changes.

Hiking and biking are fun, we should all get together and do that.  Maybe we should set up a once-a-month day, like every 3rd Fri or Sat or something, that we all get together... you know, since there’s so many of us and it’s so hard for us all to coordinate!

Anyway yeah, we should write to the manager of Obediah’s.  Did you happen to get their address?  We should have kept a menu!

> As someone with some serving experience...

That’s right, you worked at Chili’s for a while, right?  The place I ate on Sunday night, Maggiano’s, is owned by the same company as Chili’s.  Have you and Rolly ever gone to Maggiano’s?  There’s one in Philly.  I am probably going to eat there about 5 times a week from now on because it’s so fantastic!

04. Jul 10, 2002 at 12:41am by Anthony:

Yes, we had lots of fun at the beach, but the stories about the non-fun stuff are more entertaining      :)      I rode a waverunner and that was awesome, except they wouldn’t let me take it out on the ocean and roam free. And we had these ribeye steaks... we marinated one in Honey Teriyaki and another in Italian dressing, and cooked them over the campfire, and they were tender and delicious.

The beach itself was ok... the water was really nice, and it was good weather.  But I decided I’m not crazy about the beach.  I mean, it’s stinking hot and you’re stuck in the sun, and you have to put goop all over you (which happened to get in my eye and inhibit my vision for about 45 minutes), and there are 19thousand other people within 3 inches of you (2 inches when you’re in the water)... it’s ok for an hour or two, or for a day or two, but then it gets really annoying.  But I definitely loved camping and spending time with my family and just relaxing.

05. Jul 17, 2002 at 8:37am by Margie:

Hey Anthony,

To answer your questions, I did not happen to get Obediah’s address and I could not find it online. I don’t have much time to get online so I did not do an extensive search, but I did check a NJ restaurant guide and ’411.com’ and I don’t believe they have a webpage or anything. Maybe they don’t want to make themselves too open for criticism. Anyway, I won’t give up so save your thoughts...we will give them feedback!
Rolly and I haven’t tried Maggiano’s, but I guess we should after hearing your impression of it. I must go, but I think your idea about a monthly activity is great. I’ll talk to Rolly or he’ll probably see this posting.
Have a great day!

06. Jul 19, 2002 at 4:54pm by Anthony:

I couldn’t find Obediah’s online either. Which doesn’t exactly suprise me... if they can’t afford to find good help for the restaurant, then they have no business spending money on a website!

Yes, I definitely recommend checking Maggiano’s out. It’s got such a great atmosphere and the food is amazing.

It’s really going to stink going back to school and having no good restaurants again... State College doesn’t have a Maggiano’s, a Carrabba’s, an IHOP, a Boston Market, an Einstein Brothers Bagels.... it is a sad situation up there.  There’s an Olive Garden and an Outback Steakhouse, but they’re the ONLY 2 decent restaurants, so there’s always a 2.5 - 3 hour wait there.  It’s insane.

07. Jul 19, 2002 at 5:54pm by Margie:

2-3 hour wait!!! That’s absurd! I’d have to bring a deck of cards and a snack to wait in that line. When do your classes start up again and how many credits are you taking? Are you looking forward to going back?
Rolly and I are probably going to see if your parents are up for a visit this Sunday, so if you’re in the area...maybe we’ll see you.

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