Now, I don't have a business degree (hell, I'm barely literate), but that just doesn't seem like a good business plan to me...at least in the First World.
It's sad. Sometimes I have flashbacks to the former Soviet bloc living here, except in these flashbacks, I miss out on the best parts of the Soviet bloc, namely foodstuffs from Georgia (the country, not the state).
But speaking of the state, why isn't there a Waffle House here? Those things are delicious. But that's probably too much to ask considering the IHOP per capita is just one in 591,833 (plus one helper horse named Sven).
F*ck this place.
Wait a second. What's this... Did I f*ck this place too soon? Mayhaps because, according to that DCist link, IHOP is in negotiations with my neighborhood suburban-like shopping complex to unleash its delicious caloric goodness on Columbia Heights!
This delights me. Nay, this tickles me. What's better than all you can eat pancakes starting at $4.99?!
Right. Maybe some neighborhood charm...
But charm shmarm! We're talking about Columbia Heights here! I'll head to Mt. Pleasant if I want charm (Burritos Fast is quite charming). Plus, I love pancakes, those buttermilk golden discs of wonder smothered in maple syrup served hot (or in IHOP's case, lukewarm) off the griddle...mmm...
Unfortunately, it looks like I'm rather alone in my intense love of mass-produced hotcakes, at least according to 14th and U, whose author did the dirty (read: dull) job of sifting through all the reactions on DCist, many of which seem to hate pancakes and, ergo, freedom, but somehow buy into the notion that Columbia Heights should remain free of such low-class chains. (Sidenote: I'm willing to bet these are the same people that go to Starbucks on the daily and hit up Target at least once a week to buy whatever mass-produced items made by children in Taiwan that they "need.")
"Kill me now."
"That is terrible news!"
"IHOP has no business being in CH."
"if IHOP is uprooting Ellwoods, that would be a public health and urban planning disaster."
"There goes the neighborhood again!!! Just when we were coming up in the world!"
"IHOP is low brow in my opinion. It appeals to a wide range of people, including the lowest common denominator of consumer."Um, all you haters can suck my syrup?
And, apparently, you can suck 14th and U's syrup as well. (Actually, I'd suggest you ask first...unsolicited syrup sucking doesn't sound street legal...) That blog makes a very good point:
It's really that last comment I want to focus on, because it was prefaced by this:
"For renters, (IHOP) increases the amenities for the hood. For the homeowners, I would think it decreases the trajectory a bit."
Translation: Homebuyers didn't pay $500,000 for a 2 bedroom luxury condo to live above a chain pancake shop, and they didn't pay that to have "the lowest common denominator" running around their neighborhood. (Although I'm willing to bet that if you took IHOP's menu and plastered it under the logo of some independent non-chain establishment with a name like "Syrup" and charged $4 more per item, the idea would go over like, um, hotcakes.)First off, I enjoyed that hotcake pun, so kudos, e-friend. Second off, 14th and U's analysis is spot on. So spot on, in fact, that I'm going to rehash it here but with less analysis and more insults. People are stuck up bitches. May I also add, they're often quite hypocritical. Like I said above, I would bet my entire low-brow minimum wage that the people who complained of the "ghetto-ness" of said venture are the same people who help keep Target in business so they can buy bottled water in bulk, pack it up nicely in plastic bags and drive it home in their Prius (hitting a cyclist or two along the way) to their cookie-cutter condos where they lament about the environment. And pancakes.
Now, don't get me wrong. I like the idea of mom and pop ventures (Double shout out to Burritos Fast!), but Columbia Heights is not exactly that kind of neighborhood. In fact, it's arguable if Columbia Heights -- at least the part that hosts the DCUSA complex -- is even a neighborhood at all. To me, it looks more like a retail park one would find out in Fredricksburg, Va.
Look, the DCUSA complex is exactly that -- a complex. Complexes are not neighborhood-y; they're not high-brow. And like 14th & U pointed out, DCUSA already houses mom and pop haters like Target, Marshalls, Payless, Lane Bryant, Office Depot, Radio Shack, and a slew of other chains...so what would be the big deal if IHOP moved in? I mean, for processed food's sake, RUBY TUESDAYS is already ACROSS THE STREET. I've been to Ruby Tuesdays. While it might be the most exclusive joint in Russellville, Ark. (seriously, due to it being located in a dry county, they had to turn it into a "private club," which means you need a membership card to get it, and in case you're wondering, of course, I have the card because I'm cool...in Russellville, Ark.).
But the exclusivity of rural Ruby Tuesdays aside, the bottom line is this: Columbia Heights is already well on its way to suburban sprawl hell, despite that it's situated in the middle of a major city. Perhaps it shouldn't be this way. Perhaps it would be nicer to be able to go to some less "ghetto" independent diner to get your delicious pancake fix, but you know what? Beggars can't be choosers. Columbia Heights is already ruined. Would the installation of an IHOP really make it any less neighborhood-y? No. But what it will do is make it tastier.
Now, if only an effing REI would move into DCUSA...