Sunday, January 13, 2008

Atlas Shrugged -- Then Ordered a Grand Slam Breakfast

Okay, I know it sounds odd, but in Vegas where low brow meets high and everything in between is fair game, I feel compelled to comment on this story from the L.A. Times about an architectural gem (or lump of coal depending on your perspective) facing demolition -- a 1964 Denny's restaurant.
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/asection/la-na-dennys13jan13,1,4791364.story

Of course in Vegas, this would all be a mute point and that diner would be gone faster than french fries.

The funny (or not so if you're starring at the Hilton) part is that crack "I pass the building every day, and I think it's ugly and depressing," said Louie Richmond, spokesman for the Rhapsody Partners development company."But we understand art is very subjective. Some people think Barry Manilow is a great artist."

Ouch.

In Vegas, architecture is really just icing on the cake (or ketchup on the aforementioned fries) -- the cake of course being slot machines.

Sin City has destroyed some amazing buildings without batting an eye, in fact it is a sort of celebrated sport.

The Denny's reminds me of the ill-fated Kahiki restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. Even a designation on National Register of Historic Places didn't save this amazing building. The owner (who was rumored to have gambling debts) sold it for $1 million dollars and now a Walgreen's stands in it's place. We gave the old girl a great going away party, though -- http://www.tikinews.com/kahiki.html

The next day I flew to Las Vegas to stay the last night in the Desert Inn, another doomed institution. The mood at the DI was much more somber.

As for the Denny's in Seattle it has a good chance of survival simply because it is in artsy wacko liberal Seattle. From this article the locals seem inclined to keep a quirky piece of the past standing in face of modernization. How quaint.

2 comments:

Favela Cranshaw said...

What in the world possessed you to choose Atlas Shrugged for your title?

Slot Jockey said...

I realized an "Atlas Shrugged" reference was a stretch . . . "The Fountainhead" just didn't fit the title. Still I thought Seattle types might appreciate the juxtapostion of Ayn Rand's philosophizing (falafelizing? oh well, never mind)and Denny's hearty fare. Heck, it just sounded good . . . and it caught a comment.