Let’s Check In On Downtown Burling — Oh, Dear

There’s a lot of politically-motivated bemoaning of the Queen City’s fallen state these days. Crime, vandalism, fear, lawlessness, tsunamis, earthquakes, alien invasions… but now somebody’s brazen enough to label it an “apocalypse.”

Granted, it’s only Guy Page of the Vermont Daily Chronicle, but still. He really outdid himself with this one:

Fact check, please!

That’s the capsule on the VDC homepage. The linked article completely fails to live up to that preposterous description. Henry’s Diner is, in fact, up for sale, but the rest of that short paragraph is sheer unadulterated horse hockey.

The article is a four-sentence stub from our friends at Channel 5, which reports that the downtown landmark is on the market. And that’s about all. The given reason is that the current owners want to retire after 19 years at the Henry’s helm. It’s the kind of thing that happens all the time in the restaurant business, especially in the diner trade. Diners are wonderful, but they’re labor-intensive operations that run on very thin margins. Burnout is the inevitable end for most.

It is definitely not a sign of the apocalypse.

But let’s not overlook the howler in the first line: “First the Oasis Diner went out of business, now Henry’s Diner is up for sale.”

Uhhhh… the Oasis went out of business seventeen years ago, in 2007. Kind of a stretch to draw a line between the two events and claim it’s a trend.

And when the Oasis went under, its spot was eagerly assumed by El Cortijo, which has enjoyed a long run of success in spite of its location in the Church Street Marketplace hellscape. People do love them some tacos, I guess.

Nice try, Guy.

Media note. I don’t know why Page linked to the WPTZ story, which was posted on Saturday the 4th, when Seven Days had run a piece about Henry’s on Tuesday, January 31. Quick check of my calendar reveals that once again this year, January 31 came before February 4. And the Seven Days piece actually has a lot more detail.

Nothing about apocalypse, though.


2 thoughts on “Let’s Check In On Downtown Burling — Oh, Dear

  1. David Line

    Just wanted to correct the record and will do so with the sad crusaders of the VDC too. The Oasis Diner was SOLD in 2007 to Glenn Walters, owner of 3 Needs, who then turned it into the Sadie Katz Deli. When the old Deja Vous building became available, he jumped at buying it and getting 3 Needs going again. He then sold to Jed Davis of the Farmhouse Group who turned it into the cool bar it is now. We didn’t go bankrupt, in fact we got out well intact counting our blessings to this day and still living happily ever after in this lovely city of Burlington. When/if the dystopia arrives it’ll no doubt be in the form of real shit, not the bottomless stupidity of our current cultural warriors.
    Thanks for the stuff you do.
    David Lines
    Former co-owner of the Oasis Diner

  2. David Lines

    Now I need to note that those brave truth tellers of the VDC didn’t print my fact check undermining the whole premise of their ‘sky is falling, bellowing. Sad and pathetic cowards!


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