Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Mel's Diner-Universal

Just a couple more vacation posts to go, then I promise I'll be back to regular, vintage loving and creative, blogging. 
While at Universal I was excited to eat at Mel's Diner from one of my favorite movies, American Graffiti.  Here are a few pictures from our visit.
I am a little disappointed that this photo has sun glare on it.  I really like this car!  It was like Bob Falfa's '55 Chevy.
The '56 T-bird.  This is the car Suzanne Somers drove as she flirted with Curt (Richard Dreyfuss).
Ahhh, my favorite!  The '32 Coupe HOT ROD!  John Milner's car.

I'll be honest, I was a little disappointed in the restaurant part of Mel's Diner.  But, in their defense, my expectations were high.  I was hoping to be able to buy an American Graffiti t-shirt or some other souvenir. I was hoping for red and white checker food containers and maybe a special souvenir root beer mug (like A&W does) or even a plastic, souvenir cup.  The food was good.  The hamburger really did taste like a Whopper, and the chicken strips were pretty normal.  The 60s music they played was good, and the seats at the front of the restaurant had personal jukeboxes at the table, but ours did not. 
But the outside of the restaurant was cool, especially at night!

While I didn't grow up during the 50s and 60s and the golden age of crusin' main, I was fortunate enough to have been in  high school at the tail end of that age.  It was a time before cell phones and text messages, when a person had to burn a half a tank of gas and cruise up and down main a few times to find our friends.  There were no text messages to say "where you at?"  Nope, our way was much more fun!  We had to recognize people by their cars or trucks, and once you found someone you wanted to talk to, you'd flash your lights at them, then meet in the nearest parking lot.  We'd check our who was chatting in the Harmon Park parking lot, First Lutheran parking lot, or Pamida's parking lot, and we loved it!  And just as Milner says in American Graffiti, it really did seem like the strip was shrinking every year.  And even though we didn't have a Mel's Diner to stop at for milk shakes, we did have a Simonson's gas station, which had cokes, a Taco Johns for "real food" and a Dairy Queen for Sundaes. Ha!
Until next time, I'll leave you with the American Graffiti trailer.  Where were you in '62?

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