It's homecoming season at America's institutions of higher learning, which means one thing for parents and students alike: Inoffensive casual dining.
Homecoming and Parents Weekend is often the first time parents and their collegiate children have seen each other since loading the car with big-box discount dormware and parting ways. A lot has transpired in those brief two months: Drinking habits formed or renewed, empty nests cleaned and renovated, free ideas about Barack Obama or John McCain exchanged, uninterrupted sex had, buffer zones expanded. Casual dining outlets are aware of this and, in major cities where economically battered parents can be seen sighing and griping behind their pouty and put-upon offspring, attempt to provide a forum for these divergent factions
So committed is casual dining to keeping the peace that, in 1979, Pizzeria Uno licensed its first franchise in college-crowded Boston. As a result, Chicago's nearly 1,000 mile distance from Boston and relative lack of aforementioned franchises were of little consequence to what would become Uno's Chicago Grill. Given the somewhat tense and dysfunctional nature of the Homecoming and Parents' Weekend meals served there, further rebranding should follow, beginning with a new name:
"Fuck It, We're Going To" Uno.
Blunt though it may be, "Fuck It, We're Going To" Uno has been uttered by countless parents of collegians from Harvard to Bunker Hill Community College who loathe the ham-wrapped hamburger/chicken finger/sausage/cheese bomb at their prefrosh's favorite pizza joint and fear the Luxembourger-Burmese vegetarian fusion places their soon-to-grad now embrace. However, students who have spent an entire weekend trying to come up with a place their parents won't reject while fielding criticisms about nearly every aspect of their lives may also enjoy new Uno menu items including:
"Why Can't I Just Have Some Simple" Mozzarella Sticks? $5.99.
"What, now you're too good for" Potato Skins? $7.99
"I bet that huge ass of yours came from all those" Nachos. $8.99.
"Oh, So Sarah Palin's An Idiot Just Because She Likes" Buffalo Wings? $7.99
For the entrees, perhaps the:
Grilled Chicken Sandwich with "What The Hell Is" Asiago Cheese. $12.99
"I'm paying the tuition, so damn right I'm having" Veal Parmigiana. $14.99
"How am I supposed to take you seriously as a vegan when all you eat is" House Salad? $5.99
"Maybe When Obama's Elected You Can Hope To Order A" Delmonico Strip Steak $24.99
Wash it all down with a 24-oz. "All you spend my money on is" Budweiser for $8.99 or finish with a "Your education's bankrupting me already, so what's another" Hot Fudge Sundae for $7.99.
"Fuck It, We're Going To" Uno: When you're not ready to tell them you're losing the security deposit on your "firetrap tenement you call a" house, but want just enough comfort food to pitch a semester in 'me and your mother haven't taken a vacation in five years and you want to go to" London "?!'"