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I was recently in Roanoke, Ala., and ventured to McDonald’s because my children are obsessed with chicken nuggets like most American children are. I don’t know what they put in those things, but they’re mm-mm good. Also, how have fast-food prices been the same forever? Inquiring minds would like to know.

Anyway, upon reaching the drive-thru, my sister noticed a sign that said, “NOW Serving Grits!” I live in Washington, D.C., and grits ain’t on the Mickey D’s menu nowhere. But I’m down South right now and I wasn’t even shocked to see that. Did I order grits? I did not. It was lunchtime and I was there for chicken nuggets, remember?

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But would I order grits from a McDonald’s in Alabama? Yes, I would. Wyoming? Absolutely not. Like real estate and nonbedroom sex, how good the market is depends on location, location, location. However, there are ABSOLUTELY some restaurants I’d never order grits from no matter where they are. Like where?

Glad you asked.

  1. Taco Bell
  2. Wendy’s
  3. Red Lobster
  4. Applebee’s
  5. TGI Friday’s
  6. Ruby Tuesday
  7. Chili’s
  8. Chick-fil-A
  9. In-N-Out
  10. Jack’s
  11. Any Mexican restaurant
  12. Every restaurant on Connecticut Avenue in Washington, D.C.
  13. Any restaurant north of Baltimore
  14. Any restaurant north of Louisville, Ky., west of the I-75 through I-5 corridor of the United States
  15. Any place considered “the West” if ever considered as such for governmental or land grant purposes, unless that place is Texas
  16. Any place on the entire West Coast unless the words Roscoe’s AND waffles are in the name, or unless the restaurant is a hole-in-the-wall founded by folks from Mississippi or Alabama who moved west in search of opportunities
  17. Checkers/Rally’s
  18. White Castle (One should never order anything from there, but that’s another talk show. Also, #ShotsFired)
  19. Grits R Us (I don’t think this is a place, but the way pop-up shops happen in New York City, I wouldn’t be surprised if this becomes a thing at some point)
  20. Pizza Hut (or any place that serves “Italian” food by proxy)