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Goodbye Hot Doug’s: What To Do with Your Hot Dog Tattoo

Goodbye Hot Doug’s: What To Do with Your Hot Dog Tattoo
May 07
15:34 2014

How aimless is my generation? Well, aimless enough and wracked with enough ennui and a lack of general purpose they lament the closing of a hot dog shop called Hot Doug’s in Chicago as if their own mother had come down with the cruel and unpredictable plague known as Lupus and wasn’t expected to survive past the fall season. What little life she had left she would need to suffer through, rocked by one bodily inflammation to the next.

It’s been a terrible month for Illinois’ favorite city. While Chicago foodies are in mourning, the rest of the nation might take a look at the absurd popularity of what is, essentially, just a place to eat an unhealthy meal. But to hundreds, maybe thousands, it is so much more.

As it is gracefully reported at DNAinfo Chicago:

[Owner Doug] Sohn is known for always being behind the counter at 3324 N. California Ave., serving up 700 to 800 sausages per day. The place is so popular, many fans have gotten a Hot Doug’s tattoo in order to get free hot dogs for life.

Watch a short report.

Maybe I just don’t understand. Maybe a hot dog tattoo in this case is like getting food stamps. Times are tough. One has to be as creative as V Stiviano these days to acquire the type of wealth and standard of living we grew up thinking we deserved.

Hell, it’s possible Mother Teresa would have even sat a couple hours while an expert uglied her skin with a vibrant tattoo of anHot_Doug's_Chicago_-_exterior anthropomorphic intestinal casing filled with ground up joints, fat, and pig snouts, so she could frequent the eatery and pass out free hot dogs to homeless folks who have no better food options. I could respect that.

Why I hate to rip on these people is probably similar to why President Obama had to apologize for mentioning the Special Olympics as a benchmark for his own shortcomings. Sure, mental and physical handicap sets a low bar that everybody understands, but it’s unfair to the participants to use that bar for public comparison.

What I mean is that, if you’re a person who is willing to get a hot dog permanently drawn on your arm so you can get free hot dogs your whole life, you’re probably not more than a couple of life forms up from the bottom-feeder animal you’re so enthusiastic about eating. It’s hardly ethical to poke fun at those people.

When I was fifteen years old, I thought maybe getting a tattoo of the band Korn‘s logo on my arm would be an awesome thing to do. Then that tiny voice of reason said, “Don’t do that. You moron. You will not like Korn forever. In fact, you might, as an adult, become embarrassed about liking a band such as Korn. You might also have a drastic switch in what kind of music you like. You might also shift your perspective on what the word ‘awesome’ actually means. And Korn may not always fit that bill.”

But not everybody has that voice of reason, and I pity those folks. Plastics leaching from the containers into our beverages? Too many vaccine cocktail injections? The preservatives in the processed foods that mostly make up our diets are pickling our brains? Five hours of TV a day has us in a constant stupor? I don’t know what’s wrong with people. What do you think?

If Sodom and Gomorrah were really torn apart by fireballs from Heaven, imagine the carnage if the same slaughter visited Chicago and Los Angeles. The mess would be horrendous. Torsos with tramp stamps spread in with the pulverized concrete. Lip rings and plugs in the ears of severed heads strewn about what was once downtown LA.

And in Chicago, arms that had been completely blown off of bodies by the sudden force of the blast from above, yet, almost poetically, their hot dog tattoos would still be intact. Members of the rescue teams would be shaking their heads. “These are some stupid ass tattoos. What a pathetic society we’ve got going here. It’s no wonder we’re getting our freedoms taken away. We’re too dumb to govern ourselves.”

It’s too bad when the FEMA workers come in from out of state to survey the wreckage and pull apart the rubble, they won’t be able to lug whole arms into Hot Doug’s to redeem their free dogs.

Meanwhile, the owner of Hot Doug’s is getting the hell out of dodge. ‘There is no overwhelming reason other than it’s time to do something else. The plan is not to own a restaurant anymore,” he told DNAinfo.

Nothing lasts forever. Except your pointless tattoo. You might consider shoving it up your ass, but you can’t even do that. You’re stuck with it!

SEE ALSO

Desperate University of Chicago students mugging vulnerable South Side crack dealers

Three prominent LA foodies choke to death

“When your city is symbolized by a wiener, it’s time to leave”

[header photo of Hot Doug’s by Leonard J. DeFrancisci; in text photo by stu_spivack

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