A Diner In Name Only?

When I was in high school (and during my time home during college), the favorite hangout for my friends and me was the diner.  Specifically, The Palace Diner.  Sure, there are others in the area, but The Palace was ours.  Any day of the week, any time of the day, you could probably catch us there.  Sometimes we would even be there more than once in a 24-hour period, and I still don't understand how I acquired all the money that I sunk there.  It still baffles my mind.  But the Palace always fit the criteria for being called a diner: open all day, every day; a menu that contained everything and was available all day, every day; and a retro feel.

Around 1:30AM Sunday morning, a friend and I ended up at The Eveready Diner.  Now, I've been to the Eveready numerous times before, the food is good, and it's been featured on the Food Network's "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives."  But it doesn't quite fit the definition of a diner in my mind.  Retro feel?  Check.  Extensive menu available at all hours?  Check.  But it's only open 24/7 on the weekends; during the week it's closed from 1AM-5AM.  Sure, the word "diner" is in the name, but is it a diner in name only?  Are you automatically a diner if you just call yourself one?  Where do we draw the line between a diner and a restaurant?  The fate of the western world depends on the answer to this question.

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