When you spend two days in a car you notice things. I noticed that the only eateries to out-number Crackle Barrel are Subways. I swear you could stand in the middle of any roadway, do a 360 turn and see a billboard for Crackle Barrel. They are simply everywhere.
So having time on my hands I started thinking about how I and many others probably classify restaurants. Here are my thoughts.
Fast food: that's the easy one. Mickey D's, Burger King, Taco Bell, Wendy's, etc.
Fancy-pants joints: I don't frequent these places so my list is very short - like I can only think of one - The Park Club. When I say fancy-pants I don't mean the places that require a jacket and tie for men. Are there any of those left in this country? I just mean where the wait staff is dressed way better than me and there are white table cloths and finger bowls available.
Now we hit the "hard to define" middle category: Places like Applebee's, Chili's and TGI Fridays aren't foo-foo fancy but they're certainly not fast food joints either. I guess I'd put them in the middle group.
But where do we put Crackle Barrel? That's the restaurant conundrum for me. I think it's the whole "store attached, big room full of tables real close to one another" thing that sort of separates it from the middle group. Also, maybe it's the fact that you can get breakfast all day long. Like Bob Evans - same deal.
Just thought of another one - Panera Bread. Not really fast food although you do stand in line and they do yell out your name when your order is up but . . . I think we just found a sub-category! Somewhere between fast food and sit-down-casual.
What shall we call it? That question reminds me of something I need to remind y'all of - don't shy away from commenting on this blog. I love, love, love comments. If you don't already have a Google account, just go under anonymous. If you use that selection, please write your name at the end so I know who to shower thanks upon.