Frank, I feel your pain. Breakfast used to be my favorite meal (at least in the morning) and the earlier the better. On fishing days, my buddy and I would be waiting for the owners to show up, usually at 6am and we had spots wired from Santa Cruz to Ulcerito. We'd hit Lyons when we fished Lake Merced which was like Zim's Lite. Interesting thing about Zim's is that many folks spell it with 2-M's since the owner's name was Zimmerman. Or maybe because it was MM-MM good when all it really had to be was open. Breakfast after 7:30am is brunch!
When I lived in Livermore and worked 12 hours shifts, I'd eat breakfast and dinner at the same 24-hour diner, sometimes having pork chops in the morning and eggs at night when I grew weary of the menu which,, ironically, was extensive.
The demise of the all-night diner is, perhaps, the most telling change of our social patterns, habits and traditions and, whether folks are now pumping iron or pop-tarts, few seem to see the ritual you so richly paint as a part of the current American landscape. And Edward Hopper is turning in his tomb, while Tom Waits writes his epitaph noted below.
Pass the ketchup and the obits, Frankie...I want to see if my name is mentioned. jb
"nighthawks at the diner of Emma's 49er, there's a rendezvous of strangers around the coffee urn tonight all the gypsy hacks, the insomniacs now the paper's been read now the waitress said eggs and sausage and a side of toast coffee and a roll, hash browns over easy chile in a bowl with burgers and fries what kind of pie?"