Friday, March 16, 2007

Anyone remember the old A&W Restaurants? I'm not sure how much of a regional thing that was. Back when I was a kid, we had one in town where you pulled up outside and placed your order via the phone there, and then someone would bring the food to your car to eat. By the end of the 80s, the A&Ws were rapidly disappearing. I had a weekend job in a small town on the Oregon coast, and they still had one of the restaurants, albeit a small one. There was no drive-up, but when you went inside and sat at a table, there was a red phone there, and that was how you placed your order. The first time I went in there, it was to order something to go. I walked up to the counter near the door, got the attention of one of the teenage employees, and said, "Hi, I'd like to get a..." Before I could finish my sentence, he held up a hand to stop me, then pointed to a phone at the far end of the counter. Feeling like an idiot, I walked over and picked up the phone. I could hear it ring behind the counter about 10 feet away from me. The same teenager walked over to the phone, picked it up, and completely deadpan said, "Can I help you?" He wasn't joking - he was completely serious. It was the weirdest thing.

The song of the day is Vitamin Z's "Burning Flame" off their 1989 album Sharp Stone Rain. The song had minimal success, but I always sort of liked it. The band once toured with Tears For Fears, and you can kind of see why. Talk about a one hit wonder, though. The duo that led this band never went on to accomplish anything else musically speaking, although one of them did go on to manage the Arctic Monkeys. If you've never heard the song, or want to see a cheesy over-dramatic music video where the band members actually try to act, check it out here. (Sorry - Blogger keeps giving me an error when I try to embed the video).

3 Comments:

Anonymous Madeline said...

When I was growing up near St. Louis, we had a Sonic. The staff would roller skate up to your car to take your order and deliver it to you. I have a tough enough time playing hockey. I couldn't imagine skating with someone's burgers and sodas and shakes. Still, I LOVED that food! I hear they're still around sans the skating staff...

10:32 AM  
Blogger Diane said...

I love root beer floats! When I was hit by a car someone called 911 and I could hear the siren going off for the local fire station - the volunteer fire station - the local boys who staff it were literally running by me to go to the station a block away to get the truck and drive back to me . . .

12:34 PM  
Blogger Kelly J. Compeau said...

I used to be the manager of a local A&W. Hated every second of it -- but I still love eating there. Ooooh, those onion rings are delicious!

KJC

4:03 PM  

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