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The taste of disappointment

Bob Kessler | Thursday, February 5, 2009

Last Sunday, millions of Americans tuned in to NBC for the biggest television event of the year: the Super Bowl. While the game was certainly exciting (at least during the final quarter), many people were more excited about the commercials that aired during the game. For me, the most exciting moment of Super Bowl Sunday did not include Larry Fitzgerald or Santonio Holmes, but rather the revelation that on Tuesday Denny’s would be serving free Grand Slam breakfasts.

This announcement made me more excited than I had been in weeks. My life was getting really repetitive as I had made the critical error of going to Finnegan’s for three nights in a row that weekend. [note: no matter what happens, never go to the same bar for three nights in a row. Two nights is borderline acceptable if you are with different people, but on the third night, you are better off just going to sleep early, or even drinking by yourself].

Needless to say I was in a rut, and the excitement of this Grand Slam gave me something to look forward to in the middle of a week was shaping up to be incredibly dull (it’s not like I am celebrating a birthday soon or anything). In fact, the last time a grand slam made me this excited was when Aramis Ramirez hit one in the first inning of game four of the 2003 NLCS, and we all know how that turned out.

I mean, what other grand slams could excite me more? Sure we are half way to a PaddySlam in the world of golf, and Rafael Nadal is now merely a U.S. Open win away from the much coveted Career Golden Slam, but could golf tournaments and tennis matches excite me nearly as much as the taste of two golden pancakes, two grease covered eggs, two strips of crisp bacon, and a pair of perfectly formed sausage links? I don’t think so. If God crafted the perfect meal to feed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, it was probably a Denny’s Grand Slam. On Tuesday morning, I would be getting this satisfaction -for free.

Or so I thought . . .

When Monday afternoon came I was hit with the shocking news that the Denny’s on 31 was nowhere to be found. Apparently it had closed its doors in December. This news was like finding out that Santa Claus didn’t exist, only worse. In the pantheon of bad news that I have received in the past couple months; this was worse than finding out Zach Hillesland was returning to the starting lineup this week, but not as horrifying as my discovery that the UPS whiteboard commercials are actually animated and not really a whiteboard.

At first, I was in disbelief. How could such a perfectly situated Denny’s close its doors? This was a prime location. It was less than a mile from a tollway stop and also near several colleges where students would want to eat great even late. Although I doubt many Saint Mary’s girls frequent Denny’s as I can’t picture a side salad being very good if it is smothered in grease like all Denny’s food has to be (I kid because I love ladies).

As my roommate quickly convinced me that we could not drive to the nearest Denny’s in Michigan City before our early class on Tuesday, I came to the realization that I would not be savoring what I consider to be the best Grand Slam of all the Grand Slams any time soon. Instead, as a consolation, we decided to go to McDonald’s on Tuesday morning for some Deluxe Big Breakfasts. However, this was disastrous as I soon realized how inferior the Deluxe Big Breakfast is to the Grand Slam in the long line of incredibly greasy breakfasts.

In case you are not familiar with them, the Deluxe Big Breakfast is inferior because it has no choice of eggs, no bacon, a vastly mediocre sausage patty, and a biscuit. I can sort of understand biscuits and gravy for breakfast as being a southern thing, but if I wanted just a plain biscuit with my breakfast, I would have gone to KFC. The biscuit is as out of place in the Deluxe Big Breakfast as the Marvin Harrison READ poster is on the main floor of the library.

As I sat there eating my deluxe big breakfast, I couldn’t help but wonder how much better the Grand Slam would have been when it hit me that I would have gotten the Grand Slam for free’. I had paid $8 for my breakfast, McCafe Mocha, and extra hash brown. At Denny’s I would have paid a couple bucks for some hot tea, and been done with it. My disappointment was at an all time high. I tasted disappointment that morning, and it tasted like Deluxe Big Breakfast.

But then, out of nowhere, that taste was squelched the next day, when we got Manti Te’o, and I completely forgot about the Grand Slam that wasn’t.

Bob Kessler is a senior majoring in political science and economics. You can contact him at [email protected]

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not

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