Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains?

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David_NYC
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2009/08/23 22:08:17 (permalink)

Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains?

Every so often, people post about a defunct Roadfood place. These threads tend to get only a few replies. But, some threads for defunct or on-their-last-legs CHAINS, usually with a bankrupt or OOB franchisor, get new entries for years. Former employees post 1 to 5 entries about what went on behind the scenes, but never return.
 
Why the fascination? Were certains chains really that good or that innovative years ago? Was it a 'coming of age' experience for the posters? First job, perhaps? Just a trip down memory lane? 
#1

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    CCinNJ
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/08/23 22:48:54 (permalink)
    Some of the food was better. Made at a time when food was food and no crutch of standardized technology to dumb down the food. People ate out as a luxury or a treat. Most did not live driving through one bad fast food experience to another to sustain themselves.
     
    Memories of youth. People search for them to recapture the essence of youth...and wax poetic about it to others who may not have experienced a time when life was simpler or better as they knew it. People are fascinated with anything and everything that is dead. Morbid fascination or curiousity. Favorite songs about movies about deceased people...extra credit if they were sports figures.
    post edited by CCinNJ - 2009/08/23 23:21:02
    #2
    Big Kahuna Kooks
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/08/28 11:49:08 (permalink)
    Nostalgia
    #3
    wanderingjew
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/08/28 13:42:13 (permalink)
    I consider the subject of "Americana" fascinating. Regional history, regional culture, regional cuisine,  regional dialects (especially the funny Minnesotan one ) although dying/dead chains can be considered a subtopic, I've always been more fascinated with the history of defunct regional/local department stores and supermarkets
    #4
    bearlybeans
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/02 15:41:44 (permalink)
    Hi,
    New signup here... I think the "good old days" mentality are a part of the fascination with old chains, and in some if not all cases the food was just plain better.

    in the 50's and early 60's most fast food was cooked in oil like beef tallow, and the hamburgers were ground there because there was no ready made patties readily available, everything was made in the restaurant.... 

    and no additives as well.....

    now the recent dead chains like from the 80's and 90's I think is just because people have fond memories of the places.
    for me it's Arthur Treachers and Burger Chef.... when I was young, it was a real treat to go to those places and have a meal. we live in a rural area, so a trip to town to eat was a treat.

    and some people like to see what happens when a corporate giant takes over and "improves" things, usually by cheapening everything and making it worse than ever.
    there was a time when everything was simpler, and that is what a lot of the fascination comes from... I think.
    #5
    Louis
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/02 19:45:49 (permalink)
    What everyone has said here is true, particularly the last comment.  I think it all comes down to that old saying: "You never miss the water until the well runs dry."

    #6
    rebeltruce
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/03 06:42:20 (permalink)
    I think memories play a big part, but also the food!

    I remember Burger Chef, The Red Barn, and Geno's well for example.....my old man was a Motorcycle parts salesman, and in the summer's I would ride along with him on his sales routes, listening to the 8-track, staying in hotels with my Dad, good times, good food, good memories.

    Plus I got to sit on the bikes in the shops while he did business!
    #7
    Fieldthistle
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/03 08:57:36 (permalink)
    Hello All,
    CCinNJ, spoke it so well. 
    There is a romance between good food, good people
    to eat it with, good service, and the stage or age of life you
    are in.  It creates an inprint into your soul that craves
    it forever.  I still cherish and wish for the experience of
    a meat and bean burrito with cheese sauce at Fiesta Cantina
    in Harrisonburg, Va., which went out of business 20 some years ago.
    And I miss my mother's home cooking.
    It is not just dying/dead chains.
    Food , friendship, family can give a joy that we want to
    always have, and mourn when it is gone.
    Take Care,
    Fieldthistle 

    #8
    badbyron722
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/03 18:32:05 (permalink)
    I miss both those places bearlybeans.
    #9
    Michael_Germany
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/03 23:47:55 (permalink)
    Greetings, David!

    In the early 1960s, there were NO fastfood chains here in Germany, just our preferred "Pommesbuden", and the "Bratwurstbuden". Mostly very "greasy" places, but we children survived their Wurst, the Currywurst, and the Pommes. (French Fries).

    I remember a man from Berlin, he opened the very first "Schnellimbiss" in our town in the late 1960s, his booth he named "Hau Rin!".  Bratwurst, Currywurst, Pommes, and soft drinks, we kids were adored to his booth, a Bratwurst was 0,90 german Marks, Pommes 0,60 german Marks, a can of Coca-Cola was 0,50 Marks, at that time...

    The Owner always had a smile for every customer, and another tale from Berlin from the years before 1945, we children loved this place, very much...


    Michael

    #10
    leethebard
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/05 13:17:55 (permalink)
    Nostalgia is comfort wrapped in a neat package...and what is more comfortable than "comfort food" Often these chains are fond memories of childhood or just days gone by.....remembering an Ollie burger's taste is a memory...A Burger Chef burger(as bad as it may have been) is a memory.......ah those were the days!
    #11
    Adjudicator
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/05 21:37:19 (permalink)
    Nostalgia and memories.  Look at my thread here.  Point proven.
    #12
    bearlybeans
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/06 00:34:22 (permalink)
    Actually funny mentioning the Burger Chef... here in Central indiana at least, The Hardees came out with the big Shef again, 2 for $3.... and we get them fairly regular, the first time we had them both of us thought and said to each other that they were exactly like we remember. fresh buns smashed in a wax paper wrapper, 2 small flame broiled patties with the Shef sauce, (I think tartar sauce) with lettuce and onions. took us right down a time tunnel...lol...
    #13
    cy_dugas
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/06 11:34:46 (permalink)
    Because many have fond memories of times at these places, but not necessarily the food.

    Mr. Cook, a small chain in south Louisiana when I was a teen, was a meeting place for many in my small town.  The food wasn't great, although the bacon and cheese baked potato was good, but the idea of meeting and eating before a football game or dance still lingers...

    cy
    #14
    jonjax71
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/13 22:39:04 (permalink)
    I agree with Wandering, Big/Lee and Rebel,  it's about regional Americana-a passion of mine and nostalgia and memories
     
    That said, most have a fascination with death
    #15
    sonjaab
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    Re:Why The Fascination With Dying/Dead Chains? 2009/09/17 00:43:52 (permalink)
    Is just fun to remember the "old daze"!

    Not to mention it gives Hoffman (and others)something to complain about!
    #16
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