Does this photo conjure up any memories for you?
Of course, I don’t mean this sign specifically but, do you have a diner in your life? A place to eat eggs and sip coffee with friends or family? Sitting alone with a newspaper is best of all. You can really scour your soul when you’re alone in a diner. I like sitting at the counter. You get the best service at the counter because you’re right in their face.
Diners are my favorite places on the planet. They’re so unpretentious and comfortable. They feel like home.
When I was in high school, before we were old enough to drink and hang out in bars, we use to meet at the L+K on Pearl Road to flirt with the cute waitresses. (Hi, Z.) At a hotel coffee shop we frequented on Bagley Road, I use to sit at a table and write in my journal. When my friends came in and saw me sitting alone writing, they would leave me alone and I would finish up and join them. I think they use to make fun of me but that’s okay. I didn’t mind being the fool. Still don’t.
New Jersey has some fantastic diners. Here’s where I go with 7-Year Old Daughter on Saturday afternoons for lunch:
Isn’t it a classic? I’ve been taking her here since she was 4. The waitresses know her and make a fuss when we come in. We have a favorite waitress and always make sure we get a booth in her section, even if we have to wait. My hope is that when Daughter is older, she’ll sit in these same booths with the same jukebox selections (they haven’t changed in decades) and say to herself, “This is where my dad used to take me when I was a kid. I love it here.”