In my high school days, Finnegan’s restaurant was where you went to get away from the rest of the world. Drinking bottomless cups of coffee for hours on end might have mildly annoyed the wait staff, but in the end, even the most obnoxious of us were welcome at the 24-hour diner on East Broadway. If you played Magic or Dungeons & Dragons, you went to Finnegan’s. If you were a “Twin Peaks” fanatic, you went to Finnegan’s. If you wore black nail polish at all, you were there at Finnegan’s every night you could get out of the house.
Finnegan’s was the place you’d go to order four sides of bacon plus a bacon cheeseburger, and not feel ashamed. It’s where Hellgate High School thespian dorks (ie. me) went after opening night, flushed with teen energy from all that applause. It was where crushes developed and cryptic notes written on napkins were passed underneath the table. When R.E.M.’s Automatic For the People and The Pixies’ Surfer Rosa came out, it was at Finnegan’s where we got all wired on coffee and passed the headphones around to share in the new wealth of music.
Finnegan’s closed for good yesterday, Tuesday,
Dec. 1 Nov. 30, after 23 years. It marks the passing of one of the last 24-hour diner's in town. R.I.P. Finnegan's.