Sometimes you just have to admire the American spirit of consumerism.
If there is anything we as a people can do, it is turn any event into a commercial venture.
Take today, for instance: Thanksgiving Day.
Today is the day, of all days to have everything done early, dinner around 3, dishes done by 6 or so, pie after that while enjoying each other's company. It is the harvest feast, signifying the long work of the harvest is done.
Now we have an added component that grows larger with every year -- newspapers stuffed with circulars like a turkey is with bread and nuts.
Black Friday, which used to be the day after Thanksgiving, is now the main event that happens to be fueled by turkey, potatoes and gravy. There are people mapping out their Black Friday battle plan, preparing to camp outside of places such as Best Buy, Walmart and Toys R Us.
This, of course, brings Munch to the point of this column: Since most of us have our gluttony planned for today, tomorrow the shoppers will need to reload and for this, Munch found a great spot -- Bob's Kennedy Diner.
Bob's Kennedy Diner is owned by Bob, who may be a big shopper, but his real addiction is owning diners.
It's in a plaza that is home to neither a Walmart nor a Best Buy. There's a Giant Eagle, a bank, a nail salon and a GetGo.
Munch went to Bob's with Former Flame of Munch and a couple of young folks who shall not be given an acronym until they are old enough to vote or at least old enough to become food snobs.
Amazingly, if one is training a food snob on diner fare, Bob's is the spot.
It's a great menu if only because one can order the eggs Benedict. Yes, you read that correctly, eggs Benedict in a diner at a strip mall. Bob admitted to have not made the Hollandaise sauce from scratch, but still, how cool?
Munch did not order it, because Munch really wanted eggs and a pancake, which Munch did receive with a menu item called My Dad's Favorite. It's two eggs, one pancake (which was all Munch really wanted) a slice of bacon and a sausage link ($5.95). The eggs were done as Munch requested, over medium, which is often not the case, and the pancake was not just some lump of pancake, but a large pancake that was on the thin side, but not a crepe style. It was very nice.
The real event at the table was ordered by the Extinguished Flame of Munch, who was served Bob's Big Belly Burrito, a breakfast burrito that will keep you going until Christmas. It was huge: a tortilla stuffed with eggs, home fries, onions, green peppers and either bacon or sausage then topped with warm salsa and shredded cheddar (at least that was what the menu said, and it seemed accurate).
That burrito was so big and so good, it was like groceries for days.
As for those who were too young to be true foodies, they didn't do too badly. One ordered a tuna salad sandwich ($6.95), on the unfortunate choice of white bread, but it was Mancini's Bread, and the tuna salad was real with onions and celery.
The other stayed with breakfast, two eggs, scrambled (with a dousing of ketchup), bacon and home fries ($4.95), which were not over-spiced like so many are.
While the food is good, amazingly, the service is better. Bob Marshall and his staff are friendly, but not cloyingly so. Bob talked to us about his former diners (Bob's on Noblestown Road in Greentree and the Bellevue Diner on Lincoln Avenue in Bellevue -- which is still there but he does not run). And he talked about how he cannot get away from the business -- his blood must be laced with fry oil.
The best part, for tomorrow anyway, is that Bob's is away from the craziness of the malls. Call it a bright light in a Black Friday.
Bob's Kennedy Diner, 1815 McKees Rocks Road, Kennedy; 412-771-7400. Open every day 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. except today and Christmas.