Saturday, June 28, 2014

Pet'r Pan Diner

Clipped from the Ocala Star-Banner, Oct. 6, 1957, this fragment of a simpler time indeed.

Is it merely a matter of economic inflation, or overt greed in the hearts of restauranteurs, or some other factors that have led our society to the sorry state wherein you can no longer get a meal like this for one American dollar? Think about it.

Even with the 1957 value of currency, we're talking about a turkey and dressing dinner here (and let's even assume that the portion doled out is chintzy) and with gravy and cranberry sauce on the side. That right there is worth a buck alone in any economy, right? But wait - there's more: you also get string beans, rolls, and mashed freakin' potatoes as well!

How can this be?

And there's still more: you get a salad, yes, a salad as part of the deal. You get a dessert (let's say it's just a cup of banana pudding with one lone vanilla wafer sticking out of it, or perhaps a small dish of ice cream, this is still a bargain beyond comprehension!) And finally, you get a drink, which nowadays, can cost as much as the meal in some burger joints.

All of this, dear friends, for the low, low, zombie-killing price of one dollar. How is this even possible? How much profit could they possibly be making - a nickel? I'd like to see this sort of thing come back into vogue (in a non-fast-food setting) and have diners competing to see who can offer the most fulfilling meal at the lowest, most rock-bottom, impossible price.

(My investigation of the mysterious Jitney Lunch last year has still not yielded an actual description of what said meal contains, but I am certain it is in the same spirit.)

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