It was a shock.
Something that no one saw coming. A move so out of character, so world-changing that people are still having a hard time believing that it actually happened.
I’m talking about IHOP changing its name to IHOb.
What? Oh, you thought I was talking about the fact that, in less than a week, Donald Trump declared peace with North Korea and war with Canada.
Please, who didn’t see that coming?
No, the real news, the news that has everyone abuzz is the IHOP name change. According to what I’ve been able to figure out by diligently scanning a few internet stories — I’m not exactly Woodward and Bernstein — the folks at IHOP have decided to change their name to IHOb in order to promote their new line of burgers. So say goodbye to the pancakes and hello to the burgers.
I can see that. I’m not really a fan of pancakes. Sure, when I was a kid I liked pancakes, but that was only because I seldom got to have pancakes.
I have six brothers and sisters, so fixing pancakes for breakfast was labor-intensive for my mom. When your morning job consists of waking up seven kids, making sure all of them get dressed in suitable clothes, feeding them breakfast and getting them to school, the last thing you want to do is make pancakes.
Instead, we were treated to that breakfast staple of oatmeal spackle. Have you ever tried oatmeal spackle?
To this day I can’t eat oatmeal cookies.
So on those rare days when my mom made pancakes — usually Sunday morning — we cherished them. We savored them. We devoured them.
When I became an adult and could have pancakes whenever I wanted, I realized that I didn’t really care for them. It was the same thing with sugar-coated cereal. Once I could have it whenever I wanted, I didn’t want it.
On the other marketing ploy, I love burgers. So if IHOP wants to ditch the pancakes and embrace the burgers, who am I to rain on their parade?
I do have to admit that when I first saw that IHOP had changed its name to IHOb I was afraid the “b” stood for Brussels sprouts. Because even though the “b” is supposed to be capitalized, in my mind Brussels sprouts will always be a small “b” vegetable.
But who would be crazy enough to build a restaurant chain around Brussels sprouts? You might as well open a chain of International House of Liver restaurants.
Of course, as it turns out, the folks at IHOP aren’t really going to change their name. The whole thing, according to my exhaustive research, is a publicity stunt much like Trump’s North Korea trip.
The IHOb change will only be for a short time, and then the burger “b” will be gone and the pancake “P” will be back.
The whole thing is a lot like KFC’s revolving Colonel Sanders. Do we really need seven different colonels? No, we don’t. But we also don’t need seven different James Bonds, and we have them anyway.
According to my research, the folks at IHOP just wanted to remind people that they are more than just a breakfast place. To remind people that they do serve things such as burgers.
I don’t know. From my research, I discovered that burgers have been on the IHOP menu since the first restaurant opened in 1958. If you have to remind people that you serve something that’s been on your menu for 60 years, your problems are bigger than just one letter.
Of course, it could be worse for IHOP. At least you’re not trying to promote a new line of oatmeal spackle.