The Long Tail of Greasy Tony’s

Greasy Tony's, NJ

Greasy Tony’s in NJ once upon a time

What is it about a short, simple post about a New Jersey food joint that went out of business that keeps it appearing in the top 10 posts read here?

Back in 2008,  I posted a story called Greasy Tony’s Reborn in the Desert.  Tony’s was I place I frequented in the early 1970s as an undergrad at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ.

It had good, fast, greasy food. Nothing extraordinary. It vanished in 1992, a victim of the university’s expansion. The students who made it popular caused its demise.

Whatever following Greasy Tony’s place might have had, it doesn’t explain why the post has “legs” (or a “long tail” as it is known online).

Is it the title of the post – reborn in the desert? Was it the mention of James Gandolfini (a Rutgers grad) eating a cheesesteak in the resurrected eatery in the Arizona desert?

Mr. Greasy Tony, Tony Giorgianni, died in 2008, so that is not topical news.

If you found that post, or this one, how about a comment here about why you came here. It puzzles me.

Update: 2022

A sharp-eyed reader let me know that they spotted a Greasy Tony’s t-shirt in the movie Revenge of the Nerds being worn by Booger. I guess someone connected to the film knew of the place. Perhaps this explains why some people search online and find these posts.


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A lifelong educator on and off the Internet. Random by design and predictably irrational. It's turtles all the way down. Dolce far niente.

6 thoughts on “The Long Tail of Greasy Tony’s”

  1. 1967 to 1971
    A great memory for post bar closing
    Few blocks up the street a bakery would sell bread out of the oven at the same
    For lunch there was the two bit sandwich shop
    I also remember on special occasions going out for a $5 steak dinner
    Those were the days my friends


  2. Revenge of the Nerds was largely filmed on location in Tucson, so probably the actor (Curtis Armstrong) or someone involved in the production spotted Greasy Tony’s in town and figured that’d be just the sort of T-shirt “Booger” would be seen wearing.


  3. I graduated Rutgers in 1980. Ate plenty of cheesesteaks from Greasy Tony’s and strombolis from Stuff Yer Face. I live in Albuquerque now. We were traveling through Tatum, NM and I ordered a cheesesteak from Tony’s Burger Barn and started telling my husband about Greasy Tony’s- no charge for extra grease. Googled Stuff Yer Face (still open!!) and Greasy Tony’s.
    Just some nostalgia for a road trip!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Revenge of the Nerds was filmed in Tucson, AZ in fall 1983. I suspect that someone from the cast or crew visited Greasy’s while filming, bought the shirt, and the Booger character wore it.


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