While most restaurants and diners welcome the chance to host pandering pols in their best sweaters telling potential voters what they want to hear, one New Hampshire restaurant, Colby's Breakfast and Lunch, refuses to be bothered with this time-honored, albeit disruptive, (small "d") democratic tradition.
Jessica Labrie, a manager at Colby's, responding to several customer complaints, taped a sign reading "No Politicians No Exceptions" to the eatery's entrance on Tuesday. She said that several GOP presidential candidates — including Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, and Louisiana governor Buddy Roemer — had visited Colby's since the summer, interrupting paying customers trying to eat in peace. Labrie complained, "They make a big deal when they come in here. You can watch all this stuff on the news, but when you're here eating breakfast, you don't want to hear it."
A refreshing response to the necessary evil of political soul-selling and meretricious chumminess, I have to say. Labrie related an incident that occurred over the summer when Perry and Bachmann visited the restaurant, with overbearing and condescending campaign staff members requesting the use of one side of the ten-table establishment. According to Labrie, "They said, 'Just so you know you'll have the pleasure of waiting on Governor Perry and [Congresswoman] Bachmann. Don't be nervous. Just be yourself and you'll be fine.'" To which Labrie replied, "I don't know if you really want me to be myself."
The restaurant's eponymous owner, self-admitted liberal Jeremy Colby, echoed his employee's sentiments, pointing out a bit of hypocrisy inherent in the politicians' vote-pitching:
"I find it incredibly rude. I also find it amusing that they talk about how the economy and small business is so important, yet they are OK with creating a disturbance that impacts my small business. I don't appreciate Joe Blow coming in here and whoring around the dining room for votes."