The initial part of this story might be hard for you to believe, but it’s the truth. My first place of employment was at one of our city’s tourist attractions. I was a receptionist, and there was a restaurant in another part of the building. People would come into the reception area, and if they wanted to go for a meal in the dining room and hadn’t made a reservation, the receptionist would phone the dining room and see if there was room.
One particular evening during tourist season, a rather short, chubby couple came in and wanted to go to the dining room for dinner. Since they didn’t have a reservation, I told them I would check to make sure we could accommodate them. I phoned the hostess.
”Hello,” I said, “do you have room for two?”
The hostess assured me that they did and said, “Could I have the name please?”
I turned to the couple. “They have room, Sir. Could I have your name please?”
The man looked at me, and I started to sense a certain level of hostility as he stared at me in a somewhat threatening way and said, “Pigg — P — I — G— G.”
With the phone at my ear, afraid to even smile, I said into the receiver, “Pigg — P — I — G — G.” As Mr. Pigg and I continued to lock eyes solemnly, I listened to the hostess laughing uncontrollably. I ended the call with a “Thank you”, and the Piggs were soon on their way to dinner.
Of course, after the couple left the reception area, I laughed a great deal that evening, and I have often laughed since about the memory. In fact, it’s been one of my favourite stories to tell classes because it always gets a great reaction.
One day, I was with a grade 9 class and pulled out the Pigg story. The students, naturally, loved it, and as laughter filled the classroom, I noticed one of my students staring at me, no hint of amusement on his face. Our eyes met, and at that moment, I remembered his surname was Hogg.