April 28, 2012

"Nothing bores me more than to be in New York and have a dinner in a big fancy restaurant, where you have to sit for three fucking hours."

"You know and people will have drinks before, wine after, then three courses, then they want coffee and someone is going to ask for a fucking French press and all the rest of this crap. To me my idea of what’s good is to drive here and go to Waffle House, get a couple of eggs and waffle. When I see the first Waffle House, I know I’m in the South. That’s good."

Stephen King, talking to Neil Gaiman. Lots of nice stuff here. (Via Metafilter.)

36 comments:

DADvocate said...

Yes! I love Waffle House. Good food, quick. I like going late or other off hours and sit at the counter or a booth close to the cooks. Watching them and talking to them while they cook can be quite entertaining. Plus, the way the kitchen area is laid out and the cooking processes are a science. Good coffee, too.

Greg Hlatky said...

Nothing fucking annoys me more than some fucking asshole who has to say "fuck" every three fucking words.

TWM said...

Born and raised in the South, but having also traveled to 46 of the 50 states and to Europe, Korea, Japan, and the Phillipines, I can say sitting the Waffle House at about midnight is one of the greatest pleasures in the world. I can also say that once, while having a multi-course fancy dinner with some French military counterparts in NATO, all I could do was think of a McDonald's cheeseburger. Simple pleasures are the best.

AJ Lynch said...

I love the bacon & egg sandwiches in Waffle House!

edutcher said...

Never a King fan, but, after he said he got his stories from a little TV inside his head, I was creeped out for life.

Astro said...

Yeah, Waffle House. Saved my life once. Well, it preserved my wife's sanity once after 24 hours of ice storm and no electricity, so I'm calling that a save.

David said...

There is some variability in Waffle Houses. The one here in Beaufort, where I have breakfast nearly every day, is a gem. The food is great, the staff even better. Five stars!

Kevin said...

Fortunately he wasn't with my wife and me on our wedding night. We went to Chanterelle and got seated at 7:30 and didn't get out till quarter past 2:00. It was amazing. We were semi-regulars, and to say they pulled out all the stops is quite an understatement. They were bringing us stuff that hadn't been officially on the menu in years.

It's also fortunate he wasn't with my wife and me on our wedding night because he's a lefty douche.

Carnifex said...

Waffle House > Omelet House
Krispy Kreme > Duncan Donuts
Frisch's > Shoney's
White Castle > Krystal
Sonic > Der Wienerschnitzal
Jack-in-the-box > Wendy's
Captain D's > Long John Silvers
Lee's Chicken > KFC

Feel free to add to the list.

Joan said...

You need the right company to enjoy a 3-hour dinner. With the wrong people, that's torture. (BTDT with my ex-mother-in-law,who lived to find - and complain about - the flaws in every situation.)

Still have never been to a Waffle House, in spite of living within easy driving distance to at least 2, over the past 16 or so years. I know my husband has fond memories of them from when he lived in Florida. OTOH, my kids and I really love going to In-N-Out before piano lessons. It's a high point of the week.

You can have sublime experiences in pretty much any surroundings, if you're open to the idea.

AllieOop said...

David, Beaufort SC? My daughter was stationed there back in 2002 at the Marine airbase and got married in the chapel at Parris Island. We stayed on Hilton Head, I love SC, beautiful place.

Wasn't thrilled with the waffles, but did love the biscuits and white gravy. A nice lady in Beaufort baked my daughter's wedding cake, it was gorgeous.

Ambrose said...

"Nothing bores me more ..."

I guess he;s never read his own books.

bgates said...

Can't they just let him eat his waffle?

cassandra lite said...

Sounds like old Stevie has plenty of company when he's alone.

KLDAVIS said...

Apparently in addition to being a crap writer, King is also a crap conversationalist. I hate people who complain about lengthy meals. The answer is simple...get/be better company, for god's sake.

Luke Lea said...

I'm a big fan of Waffle House too.

leslyn said...

Waffle House CANNOT be compared to Omelette House (is that some kind of French place?). Waffle House stands alone.

Christy said...

Three hours? I've taken six.

Don't like Waffle House, don't like it at all, but it was my young relatives' favorite place to go after movies so I endured. Now IHOP is our after movie eatery where they ask me what dressing I want on my Caesar Salad. The waitress felt so bad about my bare looking salad she offered to take it back and add tomatoes and cucumbers and carrots.

Thanks for posting that. I love Gaiman, but somehow never track his blog closely.

Sitting here watching the Dove Awards for Christian Music and I must say, the badinage between the hosts is far superior to anything I've seen on the Oscars in years.

Carnifex said...

@Leslyn

Have you seen the low rent Waffle House? I kid you not, "Waffle Hut"!

When I first saw a "Waffle Hut" I remembered the restaurant in "Coming to America"...it as MacDonalds, the Scottish Rite version of McDonalds.

You know the old saw about imitation? No, it ain't. It's just sad.

sane_voter said...

I thought they were called Omelet Shoppe, rather than Omelet House. Never ate at one, but remembered thinking they were rip-offs of Waffle House.

sane_voter said...

There is also Huddle House. Never have eaten there, either.

rcommal said...

Me, I like to cook at home (which is overwhelmingly the norm here, day after day after day: Every Day), with also the leavening of both Waffle Houses and upscale restaurants thrown in there, life-living speaking.

Viva la bon appetit!

; )

traditionalguy said...

Waffle House is an Atlanta chain that builds and owns its own restaurants. They are well run.

A quick platter of anything with hash browns scattered with onions and a of coffee is part of travel in the south.

The restaurants are designed to look like warm and cozy kitchens seen from the outside. In addition to fresh food they are selling the feelings from childhood of being served by a loving mother in the kitchen. That is a big attraction to the many rootless or temporarily homeless grown ups.

The waitresses act out the family parts too.

AllieOop said...

Traditionalguy, the waitresses make you wash your hands before eating? How do they act out the family parts, or are you pulling our legs?

yashu said...

I feel like someone has to connect this post to the reference to The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover in the previous post.

But I'm not witty enough to think of anything to say. Damn.

traditionalguy said...

Allie... Good morning to you. The family part at Waffle House is an informal friendliness like being in a Dickens novel with country cousins. It is the opposite experience from dining at a proud French Restaurant. And when traveling it is also open on Christmas Day...like a family should be that takes you in when all else is closed.

Johanna Lapp said...

The copycat was McDougal's, not MacDonald's in Coming to America.

Astro said...

Ed McMahon:
The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover
Carnac the Magnificent:
Who's eating breakfast together in the Waffle House at 2 AM?

tim maguire said...

Not a King fan, but I think more of him now. Agree totally. I have a number of foodie friends who could spend all night around the table. Often as not, by the time the check comes, I'm hungry again and want to get a pizza.

Roger Sweeny said...

Last Thanksgiving, after a ten hour drive to my parents--my father was in a nursing home dying and my mother was going to bed--my wife and I had an intimate Thanksgiving dinner at the Waffle House next to our motel.

When life gives you lemons ...

SGT Ted said...

What he is describing is the difference between European and American dining traditions.

If the food and the company is good, you won't notice the time passing.

Peter said...

Restaurants, fancy or otherwise, don't want people to stay for three hours, at least not at busy times. Table turnover is how restaurants make money.

David said...

Allie, it's true that one of the lesser items on the Waffle House menu is the waffles. Go figure.

Quite a few Parris Island drill instructors come into the waffle house. They are steak for breakfast guys. Also, eggs, sausage, bacon, etc. They are pretty hungry after the training pod has graduated.

Parris Island has a graduation almost every Friday. The parents come and bring the siblings of the recruits. Once graduation is over, they often go out for a meal in town and every Friday and some Saturdays there are recruit graduates and their families in the Waffle House. The grads are in uniform and look fabulous. The siblings can't take their eyes off of them, they are so amazingly transformed.

David said...

Roger, one of my most memorable Thanksgiving Dinners was at the Eat-N-Park Big Boy in Gibsonia, Pa. just after my wife's mother had died at the nursing home there. Just me and my wife. A lot of talking and giving thanks got done.

yashu said...

LOL Astro

Alex said...

I only have this fancy-pants restaurant where I can have "brunch" with pink champagne and shit.

Oh and there's always McDonald's bacon, egg and cheese biscuit. Free Wi-Fi.