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The Boston Globe



As we push our chair away from the table at the beloved Hilltop

It’s the end of an era.

I thought I was getting old, in light of my resistance to adopting new apps and other critically important digital miscellanea.

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But here’s the real proof: The Hilltop Steakhouse has outlived its raison d’être (Page A1, Oct. 11).

Who the heck has a weekly steak-and-potatoes meal anymore, with butter pats in satisfying quarter-stick slivers? Who still downs whiskey sours by the pitcherful and then happily drives home with the windows open, listening to the Red Sox game? Who looks forward anymore to the Hilltop’s 12-foot-wide parking spaces and vast restrooms and the country’s finest display of Holstein-, Jersey-, Angus-, and Simmenthal-themed framed posters and prints?

Is it really possible we shall never again hear that amplified, melodic refrain, “number 41, 256, 27 for Sioux City; number 17, 36, 127 for Kansas City,” or embrace, at sunset, the thrill of stepping out of the enormous line by the vast array of plastic cows, the swoosh of Route 1 traffic adding to the allure, to approach Debbie (Pattie? Joan? Fran?) HERSELF, to ask, “Did you say 636 for Carson City?” and experience the frisson one endures when Debbie (Pattie? Joan? Fran?) HERSELF, replies, unamplified, just to you, personally, “Not yet, dear”?

Who the heck does all this anymore?

Not me.

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So, I guess, not enough others do either.

It’s a sad day in Saugus and far from the Hilltop, as well. Life goes on, and on and on.

Pell Osborn


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