This Post is More Than a Mouthful

I’ve been enjoying a new reality series on CBS: Undercover Boss.  In the premise, presidents and CEOs of large corporations change their name and their identity without their employee’s knowledge to experience a firsthand look at the inner workings of their companies.


Two episodes have aired so far: Waste Management and Hooters.  In both episodes the CEOs witnessed some poor management styles as well as some fine,
good-hearted employees.


In the Hooters episode, CEO and President, Cody Brooks, failed to understand the stigma attached to the Hooters girl and brand.  I would have to agree.  Perhaps, back when the company first began in 1983 in Clearwater, FL the Hooters Girl appearance would have been considered risqué.  Now almost 30 years later, the stigma is no more than offensive than an old Benny Hill episode.



So some of the merchandise might be offensive, but who is visiting Hooters for the merchandise?  All right, so some people do visit Hooters for the merchandise, but to my eyes, a Hooters calendar is no more different than the Sports Illustrated calendar.



Sure, both sell beauty along with a false image of the perfect woman, but I’m not buying it and I’m not selling that idea to my daughters.


During the Hooters Undercover Episode, Cody wonders how Hooters can remove some of the stigma attached to the Hooters brand.  I’ve known girls from high school and college who worked as Hooters Girls to pay their way through school and I am sure their stories are similar to many other Hooter Girls around the world.  I would love to know where these women go after they leave Hooters.  Where are they now?


For myself, having grown up in Florida around the Hooters brand, I honestly don’t find it any more offensive than a high school cheerleader uniform.  I have always thought the Hooters outfit reminded me of a roller derby babe and simply needed a pair of skates to finish the look.  Sure the outfits are skimpy, but not slutty and like the slogan says, “Delightfully tacky, yet unrefined”.


But has my exposure to Hooters over the years desensitized me?


I have professed my love for Hooters chicken wings several times on this blog (here and here).  Our neighborhood Hooters is located on the water and offers some of the best sunsets this side of the Sunshine State.   When we visit the restaurant, we bring the whole family and even invite our friends and their children to join us.


As a mother of two girls, do I worry that I am sending the wrong message to my daughters?  No.  My husband doesn’t drool over the girls or make comments about the hefty pairings they bring to the table to accompany the wings and beer.  I also refrain from making observations about the girls, because I believe my daughters are far more influenced by our actions than what parades around in short shorts and tight t-shirts.


We’ve always respected our Hooters servers as such: servers who bring us the wings and cheap beer we love with a pretty smile.  And, we’ve never even noticed any other view besides the sunset.



  1. Life with Kaishon says:

    First of all, I just LOVE that show. I didn’t see this episode yet. So excited too. I feel the same way. I don’t really ever go to Hooters to see You Know Whats : ). Does anyone go there to see that? I feel like a girl that worked there could go on to have a great career. Can’t wait to see what everyone else says!
    LOVE the picture of your family. You are all so beautiful!

  2. Momisodes says:

    I have to admit that I LOVE Hooters’ wings. It is something I definitely miss about Florida. As for their outfits, I did not think much of them either. Especially since I lived in south Florida and South Beach where most people wore less than a yard of fabric at all times.

    However, now that I live up north, I can see how it can be shocking. Especially since most people don’t even get to wear short sleeves or shorts for most of the year.

  3. Running Betty says:

    I’m one of those terrible women who believes we all have choices to make in life, and if that girl is choosing to work at Hooters knowing she’ll be in stupid tights and shrty shorts, instead of, say, Applebees, in black pants and a T-Shirt, then that is her choice.

    I had dinner with one of the original Hooters girls one night (not at Hooters) and she wanted to talk about parenting and mommy-hood.

    I want to watch that episode just to see how he followed up to the rheindeer eating contest that I saw on the commercial. I’m sure I’ll catch a rerun.

  4. joann mannix says:

    Hi!! I’m over from SITS. It’s nice to meet you! I think I’m your neighbor, because I’m in the Tampa Bay area of the Sunshine State. Like you, when I think of Hooter’s, I think of great chicken wings and darned good burgers, too. I never think of it in a salacious way at all. In fact, I had a blog post recently where I showed a picture of Hooter’s wings to go and said that my husband brings home the bacon. Some of my blog friends from other states went craaazy, saying, “Sure your husband went to just ‘pick up the wings’.” It’s not like it’s a strip club! I, too, have known many a girl who worked her way through school on the great tips. I have great sympathy for those girls, as a matter of fact. Who wants to work in shorts and panty hose all day. Yuck.

    Great blog. I’ll be back, Florida Friend.

  5. Tiffany says:

    I loved this show, although I would have liked to see the manager who was awful to the Hooters girls fired. I suppose being a franchise, the CEO could not directly fire him.

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