DC and I went out to dinner last night with my brother and sister-in-law. DC was having a hard time when we first arrived. He was really looking forward to dinner all week so I know that part of it was his regular "arrival anxiety", as I like to call it. I can't be sure but I THINK the severity of it also had something to do with not being able to find a parking spot for a good long time - so much so, that I had to take him outside for a while until he could calm down.
We were finally able to go back to the table and he seemed all right. The service was SLOW and I was a bit on edge that something else would set him off. When the food finally arrived, I assumed that we were home-free, but then all of a sudden the lights went down - dimmed, but very quickly and very low.
I saw his face, he stopped eating and froze thinking the power was going out. Unfortunately I had a mouthful of food (because, what else is new) but my sister-in-law also saw him react and jumped in to calm him down and tell him that the restaurant just dimmed the lights. #NoStormToday - the power was not going out.
His anxiety must have been more apparent to people that I thought because I heard a voice from the table behind us asking "Oh, is that too dark?" and I realized that it was not the restaurant at all. It was a couple that was just seated and happened to be seated next to the switch. They just took it upon themselves, to come in and lower the lights throughout the entire restaurant!
I explained that he was afraid because he thought the power was going out. The man said "Well we don't want to upset him" (no sir, you certainly do not) and turned the lights back up and acted as if I should be grateful to THEM for doing that!
Even after the lights went up, we still had to talk him down a bit before he got over the fear of losing power. Fortunately, it wasn't as bad as I imagined it would be when I first saw the look on his face.
I don't know, and it's only me - but I would never walk into a restaurant and just decide for everyone there that the lights need to be turned down - way down. And I know that some restaurants do this at a certain hour but they usually do it gradually so as not to have people think they were having a brown-out. It's not as if the place was ridiculously bright to begin with.