RUSH: As we left you yesterday, ladies and gentlemen, we were teasing you with this story from Tempe, Arizona. “The Heart Attack Grill, a theme restaurant. Specialties include the quadruple bypass burger and flatliner fries which are cooked in pure lard, making health care professionals’ blood pressure rise and not because of the menu. It’s because of the waitresses. The waitresses are dressed as naughty nurses.” The waitresses are dressed up “as scantily clad nurses. They wear skimpy cleavage-bearing outfits, high heels, thigh-high stocking,” which it says here “is a male fantasy that some nursing organizations say is an insult to the profession.”
I have to go on record. I realize that I’m not your average guy. you average people know who you are, and I’m not one, but I have never fantasized about nurses, and I certainly don’t fantasize about thigh-high stockings. They’re just something else to be taken off. They just get in the way. I’ve never understood that. A lot of people have these fantasies about it, dominatrixes and stuff like that, but why delay the inevitable? Have thigh-high stockings ever been exciting to you Snerdley? Well, you’re an odd guy. Well, no, you’re an average guy. They don’t excite the imagination. Well, they don’t mine. They obscure the real view. I mean, they don’t excite the imagination. Anyway, “Several nurses have complained to the Arizona Attorney General’s office and a national nursing group has asked the Heart Attack Grill owner John Basso to stop using the outfits. Sandy Summers is executive director of the Center for Nursing Advocacy based in Baltimore.” She called our offices right before the program. You talked to her, H.R., is that true? He did, right before the program. Okay, there’s your note.
At any rate, “Sandy Summers, executive direct of the Center for Nursing Advocacy in Baltimore on the case about a restaurant in Tempe said that nurses ‘are the most sexually fantasized-about profession. We’re asking people if they’re going to have these fantasies, please don’t make it so public. Move these sexual fantasies to other professions.'” She says she didn’t say that. She told H.R. that they misquoted her on this; she did not say move these sexual fantasies to other professions. Well, it wouldn’t have bothered me had she said it. Back in the good old days it seems like — I vowed I would never say that, as I got older: “back in the good old days,” but you can’t help it with the mess this country is in now. Remember when you could call them “stewardesses”? Now,
Hooters came out and yeah, people were going nuts over Hooters, but Hooters survived the controversy, and I certainly hope here that Mr. Basso out in Tempe at the Heart Attack Grill survives the controversy over his restaurant. I love theme restaurants like this. I remember when I was (interruption). I did what? I think I did a Hooters ad. Yeah, I did many Hooters ads, back in the early days of the program, back in the good old days. I remember in Sacramento I was toying with the idea — I was there from ’84 to ’88, some friends of mine and I were toying with the idea — of doing a theme restaurant then called the Current Events Cafe, and the menu would change to reflect the events of the day.
They were building a light rail system at the time, which was late and it was doomed to fail, it was doomed to be a money waster, it was doomed to not come in on time in terms of construction. So we were going to have the Late Rail Burger. You order it, but what’s delivered to you is late, not what you ordered, and it’s more expensive than what was on the menu. (Laughing.) Little things like that. We never got around to doing it but I love this kind of thinking. I also toyed with the idea of a restaurant where the entr?e is free and the salad bar is $49.95. Any number of fun things. So this guy Basso at the Heart Attack Grill says “the most serious complaint he’s faced was like made to the Arizona Attorney General’s office by the State Board of Nursing. In September, the AG’s office wrote Basso a letter informing him that he is illegally using the word ‘nurse’ at his restaurant and his website.” I’m not kidding you! I’m not kidding. I’m not joking. He was told that he was illegally using the word nurse. “They cited Arizona Statute ARS-23-1636. The attorney general said only someone who has a valid nursing license can use the title nurse. Now, Basso refused to remove ‘nurse’ from his website, but inserted an asterisk next to every nurse reference that included the following disclaimer: ‘The use of the word nurse above son-in-law intended as a parody. None of the women pictured on our website actually have any medical training nor do they attempt to provide any real medical services should you have a heart attack eating at our restaurant, the Heart Attack Grill. It should be made clear that the Heart Attack Grill and its…'” (laughing) We can’t laugh at this! You know, nobody has a sense of humor anymore. Everybody is wound up so tight, waiting to be offended, a bunch of insecure weaklings out there just afraid to confront anything that doesn’t conform to their cocoonish, tiny irrelevant world view.
I want to say a little bit about the Heart Attack Grill. John Basso says that the complaints against his restaurant, the Heart Attack Grill have been good for his business. ‘All they’ve done is ensure that there’s going to be a gajillion of these all across the country.’ They opened a year ago. It’s a Hooters-like formula: red meat, sexy waitresses dressed as nurses here. Diners choose from among four cheeseburgers: the single, double, triple, and quadruple bypass. The quadruple is four half-pound beef patties, four pieces of cheese, and a mound of bacon. Basso says, “Essentially it’s nutritional pornography. It’s so bad for you, it’s shocking.'”
Now, some of the waitresses: “Courtney Chapman, a 20-year-old waitress at the grill, said she found nothing wrong with the uniform or the stares that they get. ‘Yeah, they definitely look at us, but they’re guys. That’s what guys do.'” Hallelujah! An enlightened woman who is not offended by nature. “If our butts are coming out the bottom of our skirts and our boobs are coming out of the tops of our shirts we’re kind of asking for it.” Well, it won’t sit well with the feminists and that’s why we like it.
RUSH: To the phones, Michael in Tempe, Arizona. You’re next and first today on the EIB Network. Nice to have you with us, sir.
CALLER: Oh, thank you, Rush. It’s my honor to be on your show.
RUSH: Well, that’s something I understand.
CALLER: Yeah, so I was calling — last night I went out to the old heartache grill, Heart Attack Grill, and I had to see for myself what all the hoopla was about, and honestly I was pretty disappointed to hear some of the things that had been said about it and such a commotion has been caused when really there is no need for it. It’s a pretty typical restaurant; it’s a good idea.
RUSH: Wait a minute. Michael? Michael? Cut to the chase here. Tell us about the waitresses.
CALLER: Well, they’re nothing that you wouldn’t see, you know, out on the street on Halloween night. You know, there’s nurses out all over the place for Halloween.
RUSH: No, no, no. Michael? Michael? Michael? Host guidance here: tell us how they’re dressed.
CALLER: They are dressed scantily clad.
RUSH: And that wasn’t any big deal to you? How many restaurants do you go into with scantily clad waitresses?
CALLER: Well, I wouldn’t go into a restaurant with scantily clad waitresses if I was not expecting to see scantily clad waitresses. I went in there specifically to see how scantily clad they were dressed, and it wasn’t anything that was shocking. I wouldn’t have gone in there had I not known what I was going into — and it’s not anything surprising.
RUSH: All right. Let me ask you this. Did you think that nurses were being lampooned, disrespected, and impugned by the way they’re being portrayed by waitresses?
CALLER: No, not at all. Not at all, and I think that’s just a cop-out excuse by that side to try to get this thing shut down.
RUSH: Okay, so I think I get what you’re trying to cover for the restaurant: “It’s not that bad. It’s certainly not what I was expecting after all this hullabaloo. It certainly not.”
RUSH: Right, right, but
CALLER: Well, definitely so. I actually —
RUSH: Well, then, why wasn’t that the first thing you said? That’s what everybody wants to know here.
CALLER: Well, my apologies, Rush. I’ll say it right now: the waitresses were amazing.
RUSH: All right, now, did any of them have stethoscopes? Because I think what this place ought to do, these waitresses ought to have stethoscopes and put the thing on your chest there to take your heartbeat after a couple bites of the Quadruple Bypass Burger just to make sure you’re healthy as you eat dinner. Now,
CALLER: Oh, definitely. I would say they push the envelope a little bit. I mean it’s not anywhere where you definitely maybe want to take your wife and your two five-year-old kids. I mean that’s definitely not the restaurant you’d want to go to.
RUSH: Well, doesn’t sound like that kind of place. I know a lot of wives that would love to go.
CALLER: Well, actually I saw a numerous women in there last night and it did surprise me.
RUSH: Of course. Did you see smiles on their faces?
CALLER: Oh, definitely.
RUSH: Well, that would really make the feminists mad.
CALLER: They were carrying on conversations with the waitresses.
RUSH: That would really upset them. How was the food? I gotta go here very quickly. How was the food?
CALLER: The food was delicious. The hamburgers are absolutely enormous, and the way it’s set up, you get your pick from only four burgers, you get your fries, and you get a drink. The one thing that I really liked, Rush, was the fact that you can pick up a pack of Lucky Strikes or Marlboro Reds or Camel Filters.
RUSH: (Laughing.) Oh-ho-ho-ho!
CALLER: Now, I don’t spoke personally, but it was interesting to be able to walk into a place and have that atmosphere like way back in the day.
RUSH: If you order the cigarettes will the nurse-waitresses bring them to your table?
CALLER: They sure will. You’re not allowed to smoke in the restaurant but they sure will bring you cigarettes.
RUSH: All right. (applauding) Well, it’s good to know you went in there and you’re alive today, Michael. We appreciate it. Thanks for this review, even though it did take coaching from the host. This is why I’ve often said you people should not try this at home. Next up is Paul from Amarillo, Texas. Paul, welcome. Glad you waited. You’re on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Thanks, Rush. I’m a Republican not because of Jimmy Carter, but a lot to do with you. Thanks for your service.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: I saw this going to school and during the last four years I’ve worked as a nurse but I don’t know where it comes from, but it’s comparable to female cops who think they have something to prove and have some kind of chip on their shoulder. But it seems that a disproportionate number of nurses have some kind of holier-than-thou, condescending attitude. Once they get out of school they seem to think they have much to more knowledge as doctors, and because they’re in demand, you know, they think they’re proverbial crap doesn’t stink — and there’s a lot of people, even non-nurses, that can back me up. It seems like it was worse going through school, how they treated the students, you know?
RUSH: We must say here, Paul, that this is anecdotal on your part. We certainly cannot cast such a wide pall over all nurses in the entire nursing profession.
CALLER: You’re exactly right. I’ve met just as many good ones as I have bad ones, but it just seems disproportionate-wise that anywhere, any hospital you go into, the nurses have this condescending attitude. You know, they write it off as being busy. Well, I’m a nurse, too. I know what it takes.
RUSH: Well, what’s the chip on their shoulder about in your experience? I’ve never seen that. A lot of nurses that I’ve experienced are bossy because they have to be. You know, the patients don’t run the asylum in there. The medical staff do, and there’s a lot of responsibility nurses have.
CALLER: It’s really not so much a chip on the shoulder as it is a condescending attitude. They think… I guess whatever. You know, they get out of a two or four-year program. They think that they have all this knowledge, when really they don’t have any experience and they go in there thinking that… I can’t explain it. It’s palpable, though. You can feel it.
RUSH: So you’re saying it’s fair to satirize them as waitresses at the Heart Attack Cafe?
CALLER: What I’m saying is that they need to spend their time and energy somewhere else. The state Board of Nursing has no business getting involved —
RUSH: I can’t believe this.
CALLER: — in something as petty and stupid as this. It’s just pathetic, you know? Everybody’s gotta —
RUSH: Well, again, this is anecdotal. You’re a male nurse, and I guess you have a little bit more intimate (ahem) knowledge than I about this. I don’t want to sit here and cast a pall over the entire nursing profession. I had a crush on a nurse once when I was 16, but I had crushes on everybody when I was 16. At any rate… In fact, the one thing I don’t get about the nurses… Sandy Summers. See, this is the disconnect for him, and I would think that most women would love to be fantasized about. (interruption) Oh, you’re shaking your head in there, Dawn? Oh, come on. Then nothing’s normal anymore. If women are going to be offended being fantasized about, then we may as well go to the artificial womb and be done with all the fun stuff that leads up to that.