As much as I'd like to personally take credit for this, it's kinda hard to feel good about not doing something.
Anyhow, this probably has more to do with people my age not having the money to buy food someone else microwaved, rather than any shifting preferences away from buying food someone else microwaved.
I dunno, man. My in-laws love going to Applebee's. So when Grandma and Granpa really wanna go, we'll go... but that shit is fucking inedible. It's one thing to choose from Sysco Assortment #7 but it's quite another when they even fuck that shit up.
And I love how somehow the fact that nobody wants 2700 calories worth of nachos for $11.95 means that "millennials" are skunking Cheesecake Factory. Perish the thought that a predatory dining experience suffers mightily when their existing demographic stumbles toward senescence and the new demographic doesn't want to eat a platter of deep fried pig's assholes.
Meanwhile, millennials are poor because they spend too much on food. Yet they're not spending it at fuckin' Applebee's. It's fuckin' Schrodinger's Millennial - half not keeping your shitty publicly-traded Sysco-enabled chain restaurant in healthy dividends, half blowing all their money on restaurants you despise.
And, of course, let's not talk about the broader retail collapse because ohhhh shit then we might have to recognize that these are all troubling warning signs of an economy in jeopardy. That restaurant the millennials are eating at? It's not in an ETF in your 401(k). The apartment they're paying too much for? That REIT definitely is.
I can walk to a cratered Chevy's (we call it the Lost Chevy's of Angkor Wat - it's been dead since 2007), a dead Hooter's (it's been through five other iterations since 2009) and a dead Alfy's (closed since 2006 but it doesn't have stucco on it so it's not nearly as picturesque as the Chevy's). Taco Bell? That fucker remodeled. Wendy's? Refaced last month. The poor are gonna keep eating. The rich are gonna keep eating. But neither of 'em are gonna eat at Applebee's and that demographic is gettin' squeezed.
Office Space is 18 years old. The argument could be made that the fast casual chains were cool back when Must See TV was Friends, Mad About You and ER but it couldn't be made successfully. Fast Casual was shutting down and dying in 2006, back when I had to design the AV systems for Hooters and Maggiano's and the fact that they lasted this long says more about the dead tastebuds of baby boomers than the fickle tastes of millennials.