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Halloween at Golden Corral East October 31, 2016

Posted by Kenny Norman in east.
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With the demise of my wonderful Golden Corral on the north side of Indy at 75th & Shadeland, I had to pick between the remaining ones on West 38th Street and East Washington Street for dinner tonight. Seeing as how I also needed to hit Aldi and Menards, I opted for the location on East Washington Street. I last went there years ago, like a decade ago, and it was disgustingly trashy, and to add insult to injury, they didn’t even have root beer. Thankfully, things have improved greatly since then. The selection and taste of the food was virtually the same as the Shadeland location. You may expect that because it’s a chain, but that’s not always the case. Oh, and they have root beer now, which I enjoy. I had roasted turkey, barbecue chicken, pot roast, shrimp, potatoes, carrots, and spinach. All of it tasted wonderful, and after three plates of that, I had peaches, oranges, and applesauce. Had I gotten fruit sooner, I could have had bananas and strawberries as well. Two of the employees who had served us faithfully for years at the Shadeland location were here at the East Washington location tonight. I’m glad they were able to successfully transfer. The manager was very nice and polite, readily and happily making change for me out of a $5 to get tip money. I also dropped said tip money on the way back to my table, and a guy a few tables behind me was nice and honest enough to pick the money up and hand it back to me. Also, a few kids accidentally bumped into me when I went back up to the buffet. (Remember- this is Halloween night and their costumes partially obscure their vision.) Surprisingly, they turned around and each of them gave me a sincere apology. I have to say, the clientele at this location is FAR nicer and more courteous than that of the Shadeland location. Had this happened there, the manager would’ve been more annoyed while giving me change, the guy would have kept my money, and the kids wouldn’t have said anything, or MAYBE their parents would have offered a token apology. Also at the Shadeland location, large parties would leave a giant mess on the table and no tip. I noticed at the East Washington Street location, the large party next to us, who didn’t leave that big a mess, got up and started to walk away before they realized they didn’t leave a tip. They all began to freak out and immediately started checking with each other to see who had change. Luckily, one lady did. It’s so refreshing to see large families actually care about compensating the wait staff for good service. This location also seemed very clean in the dining area and buffet line. My only complaint, albeit minor, was that the men’s room was wet all over, trashed out, and the toilets were broken to the point where they wouldn’t or almost wouldn’t flush. Still, I’d go here again. It’s a bummer losing my close Shadeland location I’d been hitting up since 2003, but at least I don’t have to give up on Golden Corral completely like I did with Perkins or Ryan’s! The nearest Perkins is in Noblesville and the nearest Ryan’s is in Bowling Green, Kentucky…at least Golden Corral still has a location in the city.

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Post Road Recreation Center fails to keep word October 31, 2016

Posted by Kenny Norman in east.
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I called Post Road Recreation Center tonight, October 31, to ask about the hours of their haunted escape rooms. The lady on the line said the last group goes in at 11:00, so try to get there by 10:30. I showed up at 9:50 and it’s completely dark without a car in the lot. No sign was even posted to explain their unannounced early closing, and as a result, my friends and I didn’t get a haunted house on Halloween this year. I called at 6:30 on October 31 regarding the hours of the haunted escape rooms that same night, and I didn’t get to see ANY events because the place was closed when I got there, despite what the employee said! I showed up at 9:50, which, IF the place was open until 11:00 like the employee TOLD me three hours earlier, should have been enough time. Now I don’t get a haunted anything for Halloween. I could have just gone to Necropolis, which was open until 11:00 for real. Further, I checked the website before Ieft, and it said, in bold letters top and center, “Open until 11pm on Halloween!” Then, when I got home and checked the website after driving all the way out there, only then did it say in smaller letters in the top left corner, “Halloween 5-9 pm”.

Mistreatment at Menards September 14, 2016

Posted by Kenny Norman in east.
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So I was at the Pendleton Pike Menards (formerly the East 38th street Menards) with my dad on 9/12/2016 at 9:58 pm handling one of the fertilizer bags from the garden center. It was improperly stored and somewhat damaged, and fertilizer dust spilled all over my hands and clothes. I walked up to the exit door where two employees were locking up at 10:01 pm. I explained to them the situation and asked if I could wash my hands clean of their product, and they said yes. However, right as I was going in, another employee stopped me, and rudely asked “Can I help you?” and even though the other employees allowed me entrance, she contradicted what the other employees already represented and told me I couldn’t go in because the store was closing. She kept insisting “it’s not our policy to let anyone in after the store is closed.” I even pointed out that they were liable because it was their defective product and she still said the same thing. My dad, who is 58 years old and has been shopping at that store since it first opened on 38th street and is a longtime loyal customer, was with me, told her what happened, pointed out two employees already said yes, pointed out their product was defective, and pointed out they were liable, and she still said the same thing. I find this treatment quite rude and disappointing, and I walked away literally a dusty mess. My dad urged me to contact corporate, and I did. They were nice enough to give me the manager’s number. I called him today, and I read him the letter to corporate verbatim at first. Then, when it seemed like I wouldn’t get any free stuff or discounts and just a bunch of flustered apologies, I decided to rub salt in the wound, saying that I went to the 96th street Menards last night, where everything was fully stocked and properly handled and sealed. And the employees were much, MUCH nicer. The manager sounded the most hurt when I said that, saying “sorry to hear that.” I then told him my dad and I run a lawn business and we get 90% of our materials from THAT store on Pendleton Pike. Finally, I added that if his employees treat me like crap one more time, then I’m switching to the 96th street store for good.

Tonight at Teppanyaki May 9, 2016

Posted by Kenny Norman in east.
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Teppanyaki Grill & Buffet- East (12) My dad and I were once again having dinner at the east side Teppanyaki tonight. For those of you who don’t know, with Perkins gone, Teppanyaki is our most frequented restaurant. My dad accidentally left the headlights on and let the battery run down. He asked the manager if someone who was leaving soon had jumper cables and he sent his head chef out to our car with jumper cables. After a quick jump, our car started just fine in time for us to go to Menards. Now THAT’S service! The chef even quickly refused the $5 we offered afterward…twice! Also, the hibachi chef recognized me from my previous visits and asked if I wanted another plate before he shut down the grill. Again, very awesome! I don’t get that kind of recognition or response from the west side Teppanyaki.

Tonight at Washington Square December 27, 2015

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Tonight at Washington Square (1)

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So tonight, December 27, I drove to Washington Square because the employees told me during my previous visit that my favorite Aeropostale would be closing by the end of the month. On the way there, I spotted an accident on the bridge from I-70 East to I-465. The car flipped about 500 feet off the ramp and landed on its side. Scary! It didn’t help that a giant, on-and-off rainstorm had been happening all day. I arrived at Washington Square at 7:30 and took the Target entrance, as I planned to go there later. When I walked into Aeropostale, one of the managers complimented me on my yellow rainjacket twice and asked me where I got it. I told him that I got it from the Traders Point Old Navy and that I was surprised they started their closeout sale, as one of their employees informed me they didn’t when I called earlier. I got to looking around and spotted this couple that looked to be in their mid-30s, and the wife was saying some disturbingly familiar things. “We went to Castleton Square’s Aeropostale and there were lines leading to the back of the store. My husband couldn’t find the shirt he wanted in his size and we walked right out. That location sucks. This one’s the good one. We found the shirt he wanted within five seconds of coming here. And now we find out this one’s closing? This location always had the size I was looking for in stock and there were never any lines. In fact, this store was the only reason to come to this mall!”
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Well, damn. I swear I was not telepathically controlling that lady! She sounded almost verbatim like me. Scary. She then proceeded to ask the manager why corporate was closing that location. He wasn’t quite forthcoming at first, so naturally, I stepped in and spoke for him, giving that couple every last detail I knew about the store’s closing. The manager was scary impressed with me and the lady asked if I was an undercover boss! I spent an hour in that store combing through every disorganized shelf, making sure I didn’t miss anything awesome. I even asked a few employees if one of the shirts could be misconstrued in any way as pink. I ultimately generated a giant pile of stuff: hats for one job, pants for another, shirts that looked like optical illusions, and shorts from last summer that somehow didn’t sell at other locations. However, it was hard to get casual pants there. All of their casual pants were either tight on my thighs or rough on my shins. It was like a shin prison. At least that store is going out in style, getting closeout items from all over the midwest, including Chicago. They even got closeout material that they never got when that material was new! Anyway, as a result, their closing date got extended from the end of December to between January 15 and January 31. I also got to use a “$10 off $40” coupon twice, so I got what would have been $285 worth of clothes for $65. Not bad, but I’d rather have the Washington Square Aeropostale stay awhile with regular-priced merchandise instead of them going out in a clearance-filled bang.
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Tonight at Washington Square (8) Afterward, I went across the hall to get Chinese takeout at Sui Feng Ju, and I also decided to try a strawberry mango smoothie. It turns out my two favorite fruits don’t work well together after all! I then went to Target, and found, to my disappointment, that this Target also stopped carrying Berry Juicy Juice. I thought it was just the Target by my house that did that! At least I got a two-liter of A&W Root Beer on sale for $1.25. I left the mall at 9:10 and headed to the Marsh at 21st & Post because I had a “free bananas” coupon. Of course, I decided to pick up some of their Deli Fried Chicken because Marsh has REALLY good Deli Fried Chicken. Finally, on the way home, I saw another accident. This time, it was on I-70 west. It looks like someone spun around in a 360-degree turn and hit the highway concrete wall. Ouch! Three police officers had to clean that up. All in all, it was a GREAT night out on the east side…the kind that I will miss once Aeropostale closes and that will not be the same (or even existent) once Aeropostale is gone. Now that their closing date is extended, I should hit that place up a few more times before the end. Hopefully they’ll have some more obscure, different, unexpected items.

Washington Square Aeropostale closing December 12, 2015

Posted by Kenny Norman in east.
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DSCF3928So tonight I went to the Aeropostale at Washington Square. I hadn’t been there since June 2, and I honestly had this voice in my head that told me to go there because “you never know how long they’ll last before they’re gone.” I was commenting to their employees on how their selection was weak and how they didn’t have certain t-shirts and their North Face-style fleeces, and one employee said they won’t be getting anymore of those ever again. I asked what he meant by that, and he said they’ll be closing that location at the end of the month. They already got their last shipment in and they’ll be closing the last week of the month. The reason for this was mainly because of the shooting last month. After that happened, they had to boost security, and the cost of an added security guard since said shooting has been greater than their expected and actual business volumes, combined with the fact that their lease will be up at the end of the year. They have not yet made an “official” announcement, but all the employees are telling their customers when they walk in. Liquidation sales should occur in the next week or two, similar to how the Clay Terrace Aeropostale closed in January. This is a bigger lead than I usually get, from firsthand sources, and unlike most of my leads, this one is BEFORE the fact and hasn’t happened yet. This will leave five Aeropostale stores in central Indiana: Castleton Square, Circle Centre, Greenwood Park Mall, Hamilton Town Center, and Metropolis. Surprisingly, this makes more Old Navy stores in Central Indiana than Aeropostale stores. What a shame…that was my favorite Aeropostale! I think I’ll go down there one last time to bid my farewells. It’s the least I can do for all the discounts they’ve given me.

Welcome to MCL East November 3, 2015

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MCL East (1)

MCL East (2) So, in my quest to find a new MCL to replace the one in Broad Ripple that closed, I tried out the MCL at 10th & Arlington tonight. It was alright, but I’m still looking for a new MCL to replace Broad Ripple. So far, Township Line is in the lead and Castleton is disqualified! I know I said management at the Township Line MCL fell short quite a bit a few months back. At least the manager at the 10th & Arlington MCL was polite and attentive enough to let us combine coupons: buy one entree get one 50% off, AND get a free dessert with a purchased meal! Now THAT is some good management. Unfortunately, as with the Castleton MCL, their portion sizes were too small and I walked away still a little hungry, but at least I didn’t have to pay full price for it! I also noticed the 10th & Arlington MCL was not only smaller, but the layout was the mirror image of the one in Broad Ripple. They were probably both older stores. One of the houses I’m working on is in the area, so I may come back to the 10th & Arlington MCL for lunch sometime! I still have to try the Speedway, Carmel, Avon, and South Side MCLs though.

Gas for $1.99! October 19, 2015

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Look at how dirt cheap the gas is at the new BP at 38th & Sherman! $1.99!!!!!

Gas for $1.99

A good time at Greatimes November 28, 2014

Posted by Kenny Norman in east, south.
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Greatimes is on Indianapolis’ southeast side off I-465 & Emerson on Elmwood Avenue. Greatimes is owned by Royal Pin, who owns four bowling alleys in town, including Expo Bowl next door. Greatimes is a Family Fun Center with an indoor section and an outdoor section. The indoor section is mainly a two-level arcade with party rooms, as well as an indoor playground for the kids. There’s also a pizza bar in the corner. The outdoor section is a bit more for teens and young adults, with go-karts, mini-golf, and bumper boats. Kids having parties get a t-shirt, pizza, tokens, and other prize packages, including two hours in the party room. I would recommend this place for a birthday party for ages 8 to 15. I’d been going here since my 11th Birthday in 2000, and throughout the years, I’ve moved from the indoor section to the outdoor section. That said, Greatimes has a wide variety of arcade games, including motorcycle games, air hockey, skee ball, shooting games, basketball games, and even bowling games. The facility is very colorful, has two levels, and stuffed animals are strung up to and from the center desk. The staff here prides themselves on great customer service and will bend over backwards to accommodate guests who have been shortchanged. The bumper boats and mini-golf were fun, though there was nothing special, unique, or intriguing about them. I considered the go-karts the highlight of the place, and I think most of the population agrees, judging by the sometimes hour-long line to get in. Most of the other attractions barely have lines. The go-kart track is very windy and full of turns, and stoplights are placed to tell riders when only one lap remains. Single and double carts are available if couples would like to ride together or race each other. However, as I said, be prepared for a wait, especially on a weekend afternoon. Greatimes, though, is worth the drive. Though kids may get the most mileage, there’s something for everyone here.

Great night on the east side, September 23 September 23, 2014

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I had a wonderful time on the east side after karate tonight. I arrived at Washington Square Mall at 8:47, and I headed straight for Aeropostale. More proof that this mall’s Aeropostale is my favorite: I found the exact item I was looking for within five seconds (no exaggeration) of entering. I decided to also check out the clearance section, which was four shelves wide, and I found another T-shirt for $6 and a hoodie for $7! This Aeropostale is my favorite because they almost always seem to have my sizes (XL and 34) in abundance, whereas others, especially Castleton Square’s Aeropostale, do not. I didn’t find any shorts in my size, but that’s alright because I got two t-shirts and a hoodie! I then went to the Chinese place across the hall, Sui Feng Ju, but because it was 8:55 and the mall shut down in five minutes, they had already put away the food.
Aeropostale- Washington Square Mall

DSCF5211 Of course, anyone who knows me knows that when I go Washington Square Mall, I’m inclined to think, “Well, I’m already at Aeropostale. I might as well go to Target!” The Target at the mall is one of only two I will visit (the other being Glendale), and much to my surprise, I actually bought stuff there tonight. Their eggs were $1.69, same as Aldi or Wal-Mart. Their hash browns were $2.15, cheaper than Aldi. Their Juicy Juice was $2.69, just one penny higher than Wal-Mart. And their Reese’s cups were 79 cents, same as Dollar Tree. So I actually got food for $13, which decreases tomorrow night’s Aldi/Wal-Mart bill. The night ended on an even better note, as I was able to tank up at the 10th & Mitthoeffer Speedway for only $3.08 a gallon! That particular Speedway tends to be more competitive and cheaper than other gas stations in the area. So I got cheap clothes, cheap food, and cheap gas on the east side tonight. I’d call that a win, and this is a wonderful example of why, despite the east side having fewer resources than the north or south sides, I like to come out here once in a while.