Shakeys Pizza on Everhart

Shakey's Pizza on Everhart. You could probably thank my late brother for putting them out of business, at least THIS location which was just west of Staples and maybe 3/4 miles down from South Padre Island Drive on Everhart. Was directly across from Olds Town, a Oldsmobile place. In the 1970s I had already worked at, & gotten fired from, the new Pizza Hut corner of staples & Baldwin. This was 1st Pizza Hut in Texas to have new salad bar and was it good. Worked there with Mohammad who looked like the lead singer Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy, also Barbara Bennett and Holly Moffitt, both sweet girls. I got fired from this place by the 'district manager' who disliked my long hair, even with hair net. So was familiar with pizzas, how to make large batches of dough, mix the sauces, and was fast at what I did. And was a teen, so liked pizza like a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.

One day while cruising around in my 1970 AMC Javelin I decided to stop at Shakeys. Was alone, got buffet. Wow, this is good stuff, was really homey feel, seemed to have lots of wood inside, and off to side had piano which drew my attention as I had dabbled in some of Corpus Christi's worse bands playing my dual Roland keyboard. Playing in some of the bands was more like guys who had instruments got together some place police would not be called and it was Noise With A Beat to say the least. So hands off the piano, boss man said they have guys that come in and play on weekends, but more like barber shop music for kids.

The buffalo wings, mojos were new to me, had never ate them before. Good stuff, and I also liked the salad since gotten used to salads at Pizza Hut, before I was FIRED, ha ha, hippie that I was, but had taken affection to salads, as we did not have any salads growing up over in the ghetto north side. It was vermicelli, beans, rice, tortillas, and sometimes get lucky and what passed for meat might have been tossed in, momma and grandma did great for what little they had and limited cooking skills to keep us all fed!

The serve yourself pizza was also new to me, just pick up a slice or two, move to next, and figured out after a employee asked me do I want anything special, they would make it. Reeeeeaaaalllyyyy? Yup, am hooked after they made me a pepperoni, mushroom & black olive, I almost ate whole thing!

One day, for whatever reason, my late brother Tommy was with me. Tommy was always a big kid, now bigger kid approaching 20 years old, about 300 lbs, liked to freak people out carrying tires like The Rock did in that Ford commercial, Tommy could do stuff like that. With rims. We stopped there, and his eyes got wide as he had never seen a pizza buffet before. The manager saw him coming & should have locked the door, give LAST CALL or something, as we were only 2 of maybe 10 people in place. The metal tin pans they put the pizza on you supposed to use spatula to pick up slice or two, (similar to Cici's now) Tommy would pick up whole pan, and carry it to table. I explained to him the concept of buffet to no avail. Manager quickly put more pizzas out for other customers. Tommy repeated it, but manager said nothing, just grimaced, watching his food costs go straight to hell.

Being a fool for embarrassment, one day coming from Woolco with not only Tommy but my mom in tow, we stopped at Shakey's. Momma was loaded for bear I didn't know I was innocent party to what came next. Go thru line, eat, Tommy picks up usual 1-3 whole pans, manger eating Advil's like M&Ms, momma was nice and only had few things on each plate when she went thru. All ok it seems. The manager I caught staring at us like 'holy mother of neptune, please leave!' face, but we just soldiered on. Looking back really surprised he just didn't stop Tommy at door & say 'here is $10, please go eat at Panchos!' Tommy was a big boy, as mentioned above, maybe 300lbs on a low humidity day, 6 foot 5 or 6, momma was short, Mexican, maybe 5 foot 2 or 3, about 220lbs.

So a buffet was 2nd nature. We got back out to old truck, and started to head home down Everhart to the Crosstown. Momma seated between us said "anyone still hungry?" I looked over and to shock saw she had emptied her little suit case like purse before going in, and had trash bag in it, and it was filled with wings, mojos, pizza, at least 5-7 POUNDS of food! My exact words were "what the hell did you do?!!??" and momma just sheepishly looked at me and said "I got some food for the ride home!"

I didn't know whether to jump from car on SPID or dig in. I didn't eat anything else, but Tommy & momma did snack on stuff driving home. I never went back with them to Shakey's again, just would go by myself or with some of my running buddies. Don't know when Shakey's closed on Everhart, but there are some still in USA, just not Corpus Christi or up here in Houston. Now you know why.

Photo #1, Shakey's Pizza! Yay!, Photo #2 inside Shakey's; photo #3 the piano guys at Shakey's, photo #4 Tommy, mommy, me & my dad. Dad never went to Shakey's but if he did, would have probably sat out in car like he did at Woolco & Kmart I guess.

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