The simple pleasures of standing in a line are not to be easily dismissed. New iphone? Form a queue. Comic book turned into a motion picture? The line starts here. Band you've never heard of booked into the Parish at SXSW. Happy to attend as long as there's at least a 2 hour wait.
Humans love lines and the simple pleasures wrought by standing in them. There is no denying it. The hard reality of this simple truism came crashing down years back at a Mexican cannibal movie being screened at midnight during SXSW at the old Drafthouse.
Colorado Street was under attack. Lightning crashing, driving sheets of rain and booming thunderclaps with the end times clearly upon Austin, Texas.
The line to get in was a block long.
Some folks were under the wee shelter afforded by Miguel's La Bodega, but most people were standing, dog-like, sans-umbrellas, in the deluge. I had my get-in-placard and Mexican cannibalism is always an attractive subject but I kept right on, sanely, driving by to find more reasonable forms of entertainment.
Fast forward ten years later to East 11th Street in Austin, Texas where Franklin Barbecue is the location for some very fine smoked meat. And lines. Long, long lines. But owner Aaron Franklin is way out west in Portland OR competing in the sandwich invitational at Feast Portland food festival.
So where can the line standers go to get their standing in-line fix? Maybe 1606 E. 6th Street where Paul Qui is rumored to be behind the new brick and mortar currently being raised. Construction is barely started so with any luck, a line-lover could get a good 3 month stand-in before actually getting some chow.
Department of Motor Vehicles is always a good option. The lines there are legendary and one could easily wait 2-3 hours before making their way to the window for service.
The post office at Ben White and South Congress has interminable lines. Ignore the stamp vending machines and hoss out a good hour to 2 hour wait before hitting the counter and scoring those sweet Miles Davis stamps that just came out.
John Mueller Barbecue down on South First Street's starting to see some decent lines. Probably not long enough for a typical Franklin-style experience but one could get there around 6 am and stamp about til 10:30 am when Mueller typically hangs out the shingle and starts service.
Love standing in line at Franklin and nervous about the free time you'll have this week sans line-standing to eat smoked meat?
Talk about your alternate plans where you can satisfy your line-love while shop is closed up at Franklin. Share your new focus with other line-lovers in comments below and we'll publish them. Form a 1 person line outside the bathroom door at your house, stand patiently for 3 or so hours and just when you're about to pop, bust in and wildly urinate before your kidneys rupture.
It ain't a barbecue line but it'll do in a pinch.
Part 1 in the series http://www.scrumptiouschef.com/food/index.cfm/2011/6/18