Based in Memphis, Tennessee, one of the best damn burger chains in existance. They started with the concept of actually grilling burgers and using top-quality Black Angus beef, which actually does make a huge difference. This excellence manifests itself in every product they sell. This excellence also manifests itself in service; their dining rooms are always clean, and you can always understand the person at the drive thru window!

History: (source:

Back Yard Burgers was founded by Lattimore M. Michael, a grocery-store owner known for his delicious, homemade burgers. The first restaurant opened on March 21, 1987, in Cleveland, Mississippi, and the first franchised restaurant opened in Clarksdale, Mississippi, in March of 1988. There are now 97 Back Yard Burgers restaurants, 35 company-owned and 62 franchised, operating in 17 states.

Speaking of Back Yard Burgers, and especially Black Angus Beef...

A few years ago, the major advertising campaign by this franchise was indeed their strict adherence to "100% Black Angus" in their tantalizing hamburgers. They seemed to be rather proud of this feature, so much so that it appeared exclusively on many of the stores' signs typically reserved for descriptions of new specials and deals. You know - the ones with the backlighting and removable letters. This especially held true in the ultra-conservative Suburbia of Germantown, TN - a hotbed of the Moral Majority and rampant cases of six- to seven-figure incomes. Consequently, Germantown high school students have a remarkable penchant for rebellion, decadence, and general debauchery. I should know.

Thus, one lazy Friday night in the hottest throes of summer, a group deviant teenagers who, in the next year, would become several of my closest friends, instigated what many would call a dastardly, mean-spirited prank at the expense of the honorable burger franchise and its blistering new marketing campaign. The first step, of course, was to get completely, totally, and undeniably crunk on whatever illegal substances they could acquire from the seedy suburban underbelly. Oh yes, it is indeed possible to find such necessary accoutrements in such a seemingly stifled environment. The next step involved waiting until deep in the night when the prying eyes of upright society had little chance to notice the revelry. Of course, by this time, the group had lost any semblance of coherent speech or thought, running simply on spirit. In more ways than one.

Who knew that so much ruckus could be brought on simply through the absence of a single letter? The rearrangement of the restaurant's beckoning sign resulted in a scathing catastrophe that would embroil the whole town into a stunned silence countered with quickly-stifled guffaws.

What exactly happened? In the group's rather impressionable state, they had simply removed a strategically placed "g" from the virgin sign. Indubitably, the town of Germantown awoke on Saturday morning to find their local, reputable Back Yard Burgers chain to be advertising a brand new slogan for all the world to see:

Black Anus!

The city barely recovered from a combination of hysterical laughter and shocked (shocked!) dismay.

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