The Genuine Texas Roadhouse

It's always a hoot to hear corporate lobbyists wailing to the high heavens about the scourge of "frivolous lawsuits," demanding that congress bar people from suing them.

But guess who files the biggest number of frivolous lawsuits in America? Corporations! They sue their competitors, consumers, shareholders, critics, the media, public interest groups - they'll sue their own momma just to squeeze out another dime.

For an example of litigious corporate absurdity, come to La Vernia, Texas, and hoist a cool one with the good folks who are regulars at the True Blue Texas Roadhouse. Located 25 miles east of San Antonio, this rural bar serves up beer, chips, country music, and genuine Texas atmosphere. It's in a corrugated metal building that used to be a garage. It's the real deal.

But the True Blue Texas Roadhouse has been sued by the corporate lawyers of a national restaurant chain calling itself Texas Roadhouse. This outfit, which operates 165 restaurants in 30 states, wrote to Doug Bode in La Vernia, claiming that Bode's Texas True Blue Texas Roadhouse was violating the chain's trademark name and - get this - deceiving the consuming public into thinking this little bar in La Vernia is part of the chain.

Now get this: The chain has no Texas roots whatsoever. It began in Indiana and is headquartered in Kentucky. It dresses up its bars with Texas memorabilia, but it's a fake, profiting on the good name and spirit of genuine Texas roadhouses.

"Texas is where we live," says one of Bode's regulars, which is way more than the plastic chain can claim. Bode himself, says, "I'm just trying to make a living. For God's sake, I'm a Texas bar. Why can't I use that name?"

Well, why can't he? If you'd like to tell the national chain where to go and tell it to leave La Vernia's genuine Texas Roadhouse alone, call the CEO. His office number is: 502-426-9984.

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