No Fancy Name
Monday, May 17, 2004
i love diners
I was introduced to diner food at a very young age. In my hometown there's a truly greasy spoon diner called Red's, smack dab in the middle of nowhere, but on the only road between nowhere and somewhere. Good for truckers, also good for families after church, and everything in-between. I can still imagine the taste of their salad dressing, which I'm not exactly sure is a good thing. Chicken and waffles were a'plenty (note to all of you who have no idea what this is, just assume it's a really good thing), the coffee was suitably crappy, and the onion rings were spectacular -- the kind that would soak through the bag by the time you got home, if you had leftovers. One of my most vivid memories as a child was when we took some of the nuns from our church out to dinner, and a cockroach crawled onto the table. Since I was probably around 10 years old, it's quite possible that particular event never happened, and I am combining stories, but the point is, this particular diner made quite an impression on my as a child.

My dad drives a truck and is often on the road at various times of the night. I would go along with him when I was a kid, and we would go to Red's, and Stop 35, the Clark's Ferry trucker plaza and plenty of other places like that. Family lore has it that my parent's wedding night was spent with my dad working, my mom going along, and a gourmet meal at The Spot, some other diner-like place. It may even have been just a hot dog stand, I'm not sure. But the point is, love for cheap, greasy food came naturally to me. If it weren't for Waffle House, I never would have made it through college...but that's a story for another time.

California is sans Waffle House, but I found my own greasy spoon called Peanuts, which happens to be right next to campus. It opens at 630am, and the same group of people are always there, myself included. I get the cheese omelet special, which is a cheese omelet, a pile of potatoes, two pieces of toast and a coffee -- for 4 bucks. 4 bucks! In California! Those are non-California prices, which is one of the main reasons I like it so much. Plus, it's super good and a ton of food. Sometimes I branch out and get a mushroom omelet, or if I'm feeling really happy, a tomato/avocado/bacon omelet. Still under five bucks, and even more food. I don't understand how I can love both Peanuts and hip/cool/good restaurants like 7, but I manage quite well. Good stuff.


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