Reason 254

#254: Ben’s Chili Bowl

When you visit Ben’s by yourself you get a great chili dish, a fun time and permission to cross something really important off your DC to-do list. When you visit Ben’s in a group you get all that plus life advice from the manager, a history lesson and a free movie.

It goes as follows:

Advice from the manager:

– Maurice, the manager, will explain that when you order from the menu you should specify what you do want -veggie burger with tomato and cheese- instead of focusing on what you don’t want -veggie burger, no mayo, no onions. Maurice explains that he has been married to his wife for 20 (or maybe 30) years because she says exactly what she wants. She doesn’t tell him not to hang out with such and such friend, just says to do this and that instead.

A history lesson:

-Someone will come and talk through all the hard times that Ben’s has lived through. The highlights (lowlights?) are starting out in 1958, the riots of 68, the drug epidemic of the 70s and then metro construction in the late eighties to early nineties.

– You’ll also learn stuff about MLK, Duke Ellington, Bill Bosby, Obama and, of course, the Alis. Surprisingly you don’t learn very much about immigration or Trinidad, where Ben Ali was from.

A movie

-This is probably the best part. Ask for the movie.

[Here you go. You get the video.]


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