Saturday, October 29, 2011

The original Grub Box lives on in Google...for now.


The Grub Box as it appears here is featured and described several times in my dark fantasy/horror in progress, Pony Rides the Sunbeam. This photo must have been taken around '08 before the little burger hop was torn down, and the business was moved behind the Rice King and a little to the west. My little bro., Mike was kind enough to send it to me--the poor guy gets a little nostalgic, having moved to the parched planes of Texas. I do admit, it sucks having no grub box there.

I took this photo less than a year later when this great old landmark was being torn down to expand the parking lot. I pity the poor soul who doesn't remember standing on that cement slab in the blazing sun or under the cool, bug-swarmed fluorescent lights on a warm summer night or in the freezing dead of winter to satisfy a craving for something on the surprisingly large menu--perhaps a Grub burger, onion rings, and a shake.

Where the Rice King and the police station now stand, there used to be tall elm trees and picnic tables. Many a Cyprus high school student had come down to enjoy the shade, a pastrami burger, and the good company of friends. Like the Arctic Circle on 8400 West or the unforgettable Taco Time next to the old Reed home on the corner of Main Street and across the road from the old 7-eleven, it wasn't uncommon to see friends working there--and maybe to score a free ice cream or Coke.
Though I remissness in the past tense, it's for the landmark and not for the restaurant itself. The grub box still thrives about a hundred yards to the southwest of where it once stood. The food's still great.
Another note about Magna nostalgia is if you travel directly to the south, as the crow flies, over house tops, over Brockbank jr. high, then take a slight turn east at 3100 South, you'll land on Ken's Sandwich shop. It's still there, but run by different management today. Thirty plus years ago we would leave swimming lessons at the Cyprus pool, and on our way home, stop at Ken's for a sandwich so thick in meat we could hardly finish it. His tables, especially the one closest to the door, were covered in graffiti, scratched with thousands of names and mysterious messages left behind by generations of kids who'd enjoyed friendly moments over a bag of Funyuns, a Dr. Pepper, and a Turkey Sandwich with everything on it. I particularly remember the epic: "Michelle is a fox!" Who was Michelle, and why was she a fox?
In my novel-in-progress, Pony Rides the Sunbeam (Update: since this was originally posted, I have changed the name of the novel to In Older Worlds), a group of people flee a Manson-like commune back in '69. Something dark follows them and takes an interest in their children. Forward to '84, and you have a group of teenagers running around Magna and the west side of the Salt Lake valley, experiencing strange things, and discovering something special about their lives.

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