Trust me, I know what I’m saying

I used to be a food critic.

Yes, back in the day before Yelp came along and made ALL of us reviewers of everything (yay, Yelp, I love ya!), Citysearch used to hire writers like myself to go to restaurants, take their friends (I was able to expense 4 appetizers, 4 dinners and 4 desserts per place!) and then write about it. Sometimes they were crappy places (like Qdoba); other times, I hit the jackpot (yes, that’s actually MY review and I’m beyond annoyed that they removed my byline. GRR.) But what they were actually paying us to do, you realize, was review it in a good light. While I was never specifically told to only write positive things about the places I ate, I never felt like I could go in and say that the tacos tasted like crap and the steaks were fatty. And so I chose to highlight the good things, like the desserts! The wine lists! The hot waiters! (Though the latter was often edited out by my awesome editor & now-friend, John. At least I tried…)

Fast forward five years and Yelp has changed this all. I can call a restaurant an aromatic cocktease if I would like to (and trust me, I will…that review is still pending). I can diss the most popular taco place in the upper-class neighborhood and not receive hate mail (yet). And I can receive accolades. People think I’m FUNNY! And COOL! Hi, flattery, I love you. You can come visit me any day.

I’ve been meaning to spend more time Yelping (as it’s called) but it hasn’t been until recently that I’ve started doing so. It’s really cathartic to come home after one of the crappiest meals you’ve ever had and "virtually" rip the place a new one. But, as my Mom always said, she tells people about both the bad AND the good service she receives, so I’m not in the least bit afraid to review my favorite places.

And so I have. And am continuing to. And think you should as well.

In the meantime, trust me – they used to PAY me for this stuff.

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