TAKOMA PARK, MD – It was supposed to be another typical day serving tables at Mark’s Kitchen. But Marylou Keller had no idea she’d be in the national spotlight after an encounter with Mike Pompeo, the Secretary of State, over his lunch order.
“[Pompeo] ordered the double cheeseburger and when I had to ask him several times if he knew what side he wanted, he became frustrated,” stated Keller. “He was fumbling around the menu, clearly lost as to where to find the sides, even though they were listed right next to the ‘Burgers’ section. When I tried to help him, he cut me off and screamed at me in front of the entire restaurant.”
After yelling obscenities, Pompeo demanded to be seated in a private area near the back, where he proceeded to shout at Keller, asking her if she really believed that “Americans care about sides?” He then directed a staffer to bring them a menu. “Show me where the sides dishes are! Show me!” Pompeo was heard screaming. “I bet you don’t even know where the side dishes are located on this menu. People will hear about this!”
Witnesses claim Pompeo appeared stunned when Keller quickly listed all nine side dish options to him without having to look at the menu.
In a series of Tweets later that day, Pompeo said it was “shameful” that she had chosen “to violate the basic rules of waiting tables” and described the encounter as “another example of how unhinged the restaurant industry has become in its quest to hurt President Trump and this Administration.” He also implied Keller had misidentified one of the sides.
“It is worth noting that Chicken Fingers are NOT a side dish,” his statement ended, spawning a wave of social media support for Keller, whose defenders noted the veteran waitress has worked at Mark’s Kitchen for many years and stated the chances that she would have listed chicken fingers, which aren’t even on the menu, at “zero to none.”
Pompeo later tweeted that he disagreed with Keller’s recollection of what took place, calling her a “liar” and noting that he ended up just ordering a side salad with Russian dressing.