"Oh, waiter! There's a lizard head in my salad!"

“Quiet, ma’am, or everyone else will be wanting one, too!”

CORALVILLE, Iowa (AP) – A lizard head found in a carry-out salad from a restaurant in this eastern Iowa city has tested negative for salmonella, a bacteria that causes food poisoning. The lizard head was found May 2 in a Santa Fe Chicken Salad prepared at Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar. A complaint was filed with the health department by John Hellstein after his wife discovered the lizard head in a salad she ordered for lunch. “Obviously, she was upset,” said Hellstein, a University of Iowa professor of dentistry. “I don’t expect she will be eating Santa Fe salads anytime soon.”

—I once found a Band-Aid in my take-out soup. Have never had take-out soup again.

What’s worse than finding a whole lizard in a salad…

Lizard, chicken, all tastes the same to me.

My cat used to catch skinks and eat half of them (usually the bottom half), leaving the remainder in our shoes. So really, I wouldn’t be all that surprised by a lizard’s head in my salad. Disgusted, yes, but not surprised.

Our local Applebee’s has an atrocious health inspection record, I feel compelled to add.

Must have been a misprint on the menu. I kind of like the Sante Fe Iguana Salad, but only if the greens are really, really fresh.

They have lizards in Santa Fe, don’t they? This just makes it more authentic, right? What’s the problem? :smiley:

She’s just pissed she couldn’t get the lettuce to regenerate as well.

Um, waiter, there’s a worm in my Taquila.

(I know, I know…)

Bah how can you not like Texas Jerky?

Friend of mine found a tooth in his pizza once. Not a chunk of tooth, or even a front tooth. It was a whole, intact molar, complete with filling.

Some people have all the luck…

Wow–I’m not eating there anymore! :eek: I wonder I didn’t see this on the local news or something…

… finding HALF of a lizard in your salad!

Customer: What’s this fly doing in my soup?

Waiter: The backstroke.


It’s not easy to find lizards in Iowa. It must have either been somebody’s pet, or have arrived with the lettuce. Both scenarios are a bit troubling.

When my brother and a friend of his were working at a restaurant, the friend, in his role as prep cook, was slicing ham. And sliced the tip of his finger off.

While the friend was off getting bandaged up, someone took the salad he’d been preparing out to the customer.

Nobody ever complained. I guess they just figured it was a very strict interpretation of the chef salad.

Dear Eve,

I’m really, really sorry for killing off your perfectly nice thread.

It deserved to live a long and happy life, and now I’ve gone and killed it off. I’m terribly sorry, and hope to have the opportunity to make it up to you somehow.



According to the article in the Iowa City Press Citizen,

A spokesman for the franchise also said

My question is, doesn’t one usually wash lettuce before serving it? If you did so, wouldn’t you kind of notice a lizard head in there? And of course, inquiring minds want to know what happened to the rest of the critter? :eek:

Years ago, my sister found a ring in her salad. Though disconcerting, much preferable to a lizard head, I would think. Especially given BabySis’s fondness for sparkly things.

I could understand this from some place that uses pre-packaged lettuce, since that stuff is processed in huge bunches, mainly by machine. In chopping up lettuce at home, even for a big reunion dinner, I don’t think I would have let a poor lil’ lizard head slip by. Methinks there’s some serious sloppiness going on in that kitchen.

Actually, I think the article from the IPC said the place was now going to use prepackaged greens. I thought the same thing you did, BB, that the mass processing would be more likely to include “extra” stuff. In that case, though, the restaurant could blame it on someone else.