Imagine that you’re strolling out of class on a cool, sunny autumn day.
You’re hungry as all hell because the class was long and your breakfast was small.
Sure enough, you walk right into a warm smell and it draws you in.
You can tell without thinking that you’re going to eat whatever makes that smell.
The smell comes from the greatest hot dog cart in Ohio by far — and arguably the greatest hot dog cart on the west side of the Delaware River.
That great hot dog cart was called Boss Doggs, and it no longer exists.
Boss Doggs offered steaming lunches for $3, $4 or $5, depending on the type of sausage and toppings, and sat on the west side of University Hall.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of students passed it as they walked around campus, and faithful customers stood by as lines stretched into crowds of dozens of people.
The service was fast, and the food was filling.
Change has been just as fast, as the powers that be replaced the hot dog stand in the name of filling whatever trend they perceived.
Boss Doggs has been replaced by the food truck Thyme and Change, and, for me, the most effective way to see if it was a good replacement was to try some of its food.
The food was excellent and, for that, Thyme and Change is a worthy stand-in, but otherwise, there was no compelling reason for Thyme and Change to replace Boss Doggs.
Thyme and Change serves domestic and international street food on a menu that changes at least four times per week, and I tried it on the day it served Southern soul food.
My chicken and waffles with a piece of bacon was ordered together with sweet potato tots, and there was seasoned butter and syrup on the side.
It was hog heaven to eat, the sweetness of the waffles and the salt of the fried chicken multiplying and complementing each other deliciously. If not for inevitable fat buildup, this is the kind of thing you could eat once a day for the rest of your life and never grow tired of it. The meal was rich and sweet and just a bit greasy.
I paid $8 for the whole meal — the chicken and waffles were $6 and the sweet potato tots were $2.
Even if I had only gotten the chicken and waffles, this is more than a single meal ever cost at Boss Doggs.
Now, this is acceptable for Thyme and Change, seeing that it sells meals that are somewhat more complicated than those sold by Boss Doggs. But it is notable that Thyme and Change cost Dining Services nearly $100,000.
Boss Doggs made roughly $2,000 on an average day before it closed down, said Lesa Holford, corporate executive chef with Dining Services.
At this point in time, it is a given that the people who run different portions of Ohio State will always find a way to spend big chunks of money on new things.
A new chunk of money spent does not need to be a replacement fee, though.
The addition of a food truck is excellent, but the subtraction of a hot dog stand was unnecessary.