The Greasy Spoon

When I was a kid, we rarely went out for dinner.  But when we did, my folks would take me to different places – mainly burger joints.  One night – I was maybe 7 years old – we went to a place on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago.   I don’t remember much about the place or the food.  But I remember – keenly – my father’s reaction.   “Man – this is really a greasy spoon.”  Greasy spoon.  I looked around on the table.  No spoons.  I thought – Wow!  That is a cool term. 

The next time we went out for dinner to one of the regular sit down burger joints, the waitress came over and took our order.  I looked up at her and asked – quite seriously – “is this a greasy spoon?”   I don’t recall the waitress’s reaction but I remember my father laughing and trying to wriggle out of my inquiry. 

The “greasy spoon” comment probably pales to the time when my father’s boss – Mr. Lovell – came to the house for dinner.  And I said quite innocently “gosh – we oughta have company more often.  This food is really good!”