Most people expect a certain level of service when they eat out. Indeed, the quality of food and the attentiveness of the waiting staff can make or break the experience. But when autistic teenager Owen Long went to order takeout for dinner, his family couldn’t believe the reception that he received.
Owen was with his father, Pat, and the pair decided to pick up food from the Sun Cuisines restaurant in Williamsville, New York. In the car, the two went through the routine of exactly how Owen would ask for the menu and what he would do in the restaurant. Owen is autistic, so the interaction could potentially prove difficult. Getting a menu, though, would give him more time to pick what he wanted.
Owen’s autism meant that he liked things to be predictable when it came to food. “We knew all day we were going to eat at Sun Restaurant,” his mother, Sandra Block, explained to WIVB-TV. “Owen likes to know exactly where he’s going to eat every night.” While they might have known the restaurant that they were going to, however, the family could never have predicted what would happen next.