Monday, January 31, 2011

A Week of Worcesters

There are some things that are quintessentially New England ... a spired church, the brilliant colors of Fall, the ocean, a covered bridge ... a Worcester Diner.

The Worcester Lunch Car Company may have been founded in 1906 by Philip Duprey, but it is carpenter Charlie Gemme's name that is tied to the Worcester Diner.

Between 1907 and1961, the company built over six hundred and fifty diners.  Over the years, the style of the diners changed with the times ... from  a barrel roof, beautiful woodwork to a more streamlined, modern look. Worcester diners are always numbered and in many cases, a Worcester had porcelain enamel panels on the outside which featured the diner's name, often starting with "Miss" ... an early marketing ploy to attract women to the diners? Hmmm.

Miss Worcester Diner in the early 1990s
photo by Paula J. Walsh
In a 'Week of Worcesters' it seems obvious to start with the Miss Worcester Diner, Worcester, MA.  No. 812, the diner didn't have far to go.  It rolled off the production line in 1948 and went right across the street.

Still located at 300 Southbridge Street, the Miss Worcester is owned by Kim Kniskern.

Phone: (508) 753-5600

Monday, January 24, 2011

Two People Who Have Probably Never Been In A Diner....

.......England's Prince William and his fiancee, Kate.

Obviously, I don't know for sure, but I'm guessing they haven't made a late night trip to Fat Boys Diner, the 1953 Worcester diner located at Trinity Buoy Wharf.

Perhaps they've 'popped round' to an Ed's Easy Diner. While technically not a diner, the restaurant chain has been a fixture in the city close to 25 years. I was at the one in Covent Garden in 1989, before diners ... or Ed!

England certainly has it fair share of American style restaurants ... and a fascination with Americana that dates back to Elvis.

So, if the upcoming Royal Wedding wasn't enough of a reason to make the trip, add checking out Starvin Marvins,  a 1997 DinerMite diner in Greenford and the Riverview Diner,  a 1940s O'Mahoney in Kent to your itinerary.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Monday, January 17, 2011

Diners & Music ... a Natural Pair

I originally wanted to talk about diners on album covers last month. Not surprisingly, I was distracted by a photo of Springsteen in a diner. Which led to diners in music videos - again Springsteen has one of those, too.

Before MTV album covers were the main visual associated with a song or record.

I have four of these in my collection and I won't make you guess which ones - Stray Cats, Tom Waits and Hall & Oats.

Larry at Diner Hotline has a posting on the Don Williams album ... and yes, I Googled the rest!

I confess, my albums are packed away since our move last year. Only until we set up the turntable again. But, what am I missing? There has to be more than this, right?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Monday, January 10, 2011

Neon Museum in Vegas ... from the Associated Press

Next time I'm in Vegas, no excuses, I need to go to the Neon Boneyard.

I recently noticed this article on Roadside Online's blog. They picked up an AP story and since I haven't yet mastered how to import from another blog ... I'm doing the old fashioned, "cut & paste" with this piece from the San Fran Gate. 

The stack of giant neon letters just beyond the gates of the Neon Boneyard in Las Vegas are unlit. Flecks of turquoise, ruby and jade paint chips dot the gravel field. There are rusted metal beams, twisted tubes, cracked lightbulbs and 40-feet-tall skeletons plucked from the rubble of imploded casinos.

Miles from the blinking marquees of the Las Vegas Strip, this is where neon signs go to die.

Click here, to read the full article and view photo credits.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Exercise, eating right ...

Today's the day when most people put their resolutions to the test and head back to work.

If exercising more and eating better weren't on your resolution list, the barrage of commercials from gyms and weight loss systems over the weekend most likely have you thinking twice.

And the first thing your probably thinking is ... a diner, no way can I eat there.  Well, no, not every day - but most likely you weren't going every day to begin with.I'm sure whatever diner you stop at will make an egg white veggie omelet.

I'm also pretty sure if you get a short stack of pancakes instead of the regular order, and choose either butter or syrup, you'll still leave full and have had a tasty breakfast.

And let's hope whatever diner you go to is busy ... so you're taking parking spot farthest away from the door, and adding a few extra steps on that pedometer!