“Damn, I’m Gonna Get a Hot Dog When I Get There”

Thursday, August 14th, 2008

I drove my brother Brian up to Evanston last night to get his bike out of my parents’ garage.  Afterwords we started heading back to the city when Brian asked if I was hungry.  “Mustard’s?”  I suggested.

Mustard’s Last Stand is an Evanston institution that was two blocks from where we grew up and adjacent to Northwestern’s football stadium.  Our family ate there a lot — so much that Brian developed a friendship with the grillman, Keith.  Keith seems to know everyone in Evanston and the two of them could talk sports indefinitely.

Neither of us had been to Mustard’s for probably 10 years, but Keith recognized Brian immediately, recalling his baseball days in high school, his back injury, and of course his infatuation with Notre Dame.

As we were leaving, Keith asked Brian to bring in a photo.

Keith: We’ll put it up on the wall.
Me: (Pointing to a photo of Michael Jordan mid-layup) Maybe you can replace this guy.
Keith: You know, we have the only photo in the world of Michael Jordan not dunking.

To truly appreciate Keith’s wit and sense of humor, read this article he had in the Sun Times last year.


I love the caption in the Sun-Times article: “Keith Woods likes everything about eating hot dogs.” Yup, that sums it up!

my favorite line in the article is when Keith says he’s there to “close the deal” when it comes to lunch.

I’m really glad your brother decided to pick up his old bike instead of just buying a new one. Blasted flat tires!!!!

P.S. The last Take 5 is in the top drawer under my desk. I was saving it for myself, but then I realized it’s really not on my diet plan.

Mustard’s is fine, but it’s no “Wiener & Still Champion.”

Do they still have the drinks at Mustard’s that are so big that, instead of a plastic lid fitting over the top of the cup, the cup actually has flaps at the top that fold together and are fastened with a sturdy plastic clip? Oh man… I remember when they introduced that bit of beverage vending technology. I thought that was the greatest thing ever.

When my parents would go out for the evening and leave me 5 bucks for Mustard’s, that was pretty much all that was needed to be happy.

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