'Washington Post' Explains New Trend of 'Power Lunching'

The Washington Post's discovery of Michael's — it's a midtown see-and-be-seen power-lunch spot, apparently — is so boring and late and unoriginal (and cringingly headlined) that there's nearly no need to mention it. Except for this one bit: Finally, there's an explanation of why in God's name the restaurant allows Laurel Touby to skulk around the place with a seating chart and a notebook:

"If the activity of our clients is reported with discretion, and as long as it doesn't affect anyone's dining experience, Michael and I will turn a blind eye," [general manager Steve] Millington says. "The second we get complaints about it, we'll call it a day."

The unwritten ground rules are that Touby is not allowed to embarrass any patrons — no mistress sightings, no bad-outfit alerts, no hissy-fit reports. She's also not allowed to wander around the room, notebook in hand, taking down names, which she did for a while.

What, you mean people don't like to be accosted for their names while spending $100-plus on lunch for two? Who'd have thunk it.

Table d'Hot [WP]