Nono on dodo

I was very interested in the article on Dunkin Donuts but puzzled by the title, “Going Cuckoo over DoDos” [The Biz, Nov. 20]. I grew up in Massachusetts, the birthplace and Mecca of Dunks. So Millard’s following statement got me to scratch my head with bewilderment: “The Massuchusetts-based chain … is drawing … gobs of Yankee transplants who miss their ‘DoDos,’ as the store is affectionately called in the Boston area.”

I moved from Boston two years ago, so unless this pet name is new, I have to question where Millard got his information. DoDos?? It doesn’t even make sense. I mean it’s Dunkin Donuts, not “Donkin Donuts”! Thinking I might be out of touch, I called several friends who still live in Beantown, asking them if they had ever heard of DoDos. My friend Mike, a fellow dunkin junky, lives near Fenway and responded by saying, “Huh? Oh! DoDos, yeah yeah—that’s that extinct bird, right?” His response was typical.

My affair with Dunkin coffee began at the tender age of 12, when I ordered a French Vanilla Ice coffee “extra extra.” I’m convinced they used crack instead of sugar because after that I couldn’t get enough. I took a baby-sitting job to pay for my habit. In high school I even worked in a Dunkin Donuts, just for the free coffee. Due to that experience, I have tremendous respect for Dunkin employees. All day these people stoically endure having orders barked at them while tolerating the abusive words of disgruntled customers, all this for minimum wage.

My point is, in Massachusetts, we Yankees affectionately call Dunkin Donuts “Dunkins,” or “Dunks,” even “D and Ds”, but we never insult and slander our beloved institution by calling it DoDos! And Millard, if someone you know does, please set them straight. It’s like a tourist calling San Francisco “Frisco.” To be honest, I hope Millard is wrong about the 12 other planned stores too. In spite of my allegiance to the pink, white and orange, it would be a shame to see places like Gourmet Perks, Izzy’s or the Dripolator go the way of Bean Streets because they can’t afford Asheville.

— Joanna Cahill
Proud Masshole and Ashevillain

Writer Hal Millard replies: Thanks, “Masshole,” for your comments. I derived my information from the fact that I, too, used to live in the Boston area (Natick and Framingham), and I have friends here who are Boston natives and who reminded me of the moniker (one of many perhaps, but a real one nonetheless). As for your comments on the chain’s expansion and its effects on local businesses, I, too, hope that the little guys remain healthy and prosperous—but the market will bear what the market will bear. However, if there is any town where such local businesses can thrive, it’s Asheville.

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15 thoughts on “Nono on dodo

  1. marissa

    she’s right, hal. i’ve never heard ‘dodos’…perhaps it’s a generational thing?

    -a proud new hampshirite

  2. Rebecca

    Agreed, Marissa. In all my years growing up in CT, I never heard anyone call it DoDos. We called it D-n-D’s.

    Long live Izzy’s!!

  3. travelah

    I think some local writer just wanted to add a little “flavor” to the article. In decades of travel, I have never heard of Dunkins referred to Do-Dos and certainly not anywhere in New England.

  4. Rob Close

    i worked in natick for many years, and lived in that area for about 2 decades. i never once heard ‘dodos’, so oddly enough i understand why this pointless rebuttal is taking place.

    the most common nickname was far & away ‘dunks’. DnD’s i’ve overheard, but we all played Dungeons & Dragons so that nickname just wouldn’t have worked my for cliques :).

  5. marissa

    thanks for your pointless two cents, jason.
    always appreciated on absolutely every single blog.

  6. Nam Vet

    “Who cares?” Right on Jason. Geezsh, I could care less what people in Boston call donuts. In fact, I could care less for most anything Boston. This is North Carolina.

  7. Alison

    I too am a Masshole who moved here two years ago. I grew up in a suburb of Boston (one that borders the referenced Natick and Framingham, in fact)… went to school in NH… moved back to Boston (Allston/Brighton area) and worked in Medford (a WICKED big Dunkin-lovin town)… and have NEVER heard it called DoDos. Joanna is right — it was always Dunkins or Dunks. My brother, who lives in Asheville as well, even called me up to confer… “I’ve never heard it called DoDos… have you?”

    I believe that Boston/NE is the only area of the country where Dunkins is really a part of the culture. That is why it hits a nerve for someone to call our beloved Dunkin Donuts by the wrong term of endearment.

    Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla coffee… mmm.

  8. Here’s a question. How many of you anti-Starbucks people love Dunkin Donuts? If they do plan on opening 12 stores then they could have a greater impact on the local coffeeshops than Starbucks ever could.

    I’m Southern, so it’s all about the Krispy Kreme.


  9. travelah

    Orbit, I’m a Cafe Du Mond kind of guy who knows biegnets beat dounuts hands down but in any event Starbucks has some of the worse coffee ever brewed. Yet, as long as they marketed themselves as trendy and convinced people that their bitter, nasty coffee was actually good, they are a success (obviously those same people have never had really good coffee). I think Dunkins wins without a contest against Starbucks.

    (For those who know what Cafe Du Mond is, you can get the next best thing by purchasing Community Coffee, New Orleans Blend at Ingles or Bi-Lo. It’s a chickory blend so know it’s not for the mild and meek)

  10. Rob Close

    Marc has a valid point – northerners love DD to a fault, and they certainly do a number on small, local competition. But I got a hunch that the anti-starbucks crowd will generally still be anti-DD. Hopefully.

    Here’s an anecdote about DD & my life – when I was a market researcher (in Natick, MA), my best friend & I got an assignment from DD to go to their stores and give out free samples of new recipes of classic donuts. On the 2nd day, I get called into the back of the store, with the health department telling me to cease & desist giving out donuts immediately. Turns out that half of the boston-cremes (the experimental half) were giving people food poisoning all around the state. Final result? I was stuck with about 300 free meal coupons for my buddy & I to split, and for 1998-1999 we treated out friends to breakfast constantly. Good times.

  11. Hal L. Millard

    Hello, all you “MASSholes,” “MASSmorons,” and “MASSiveheadaches.” Thanks for speaking up for the 6.5 million aggrieved residents of Massachusetts and being the arbiters of all things Bostonian/New England-y. Thank God — or, should I say Elohim, in deference to your previous Mormon governor and prez candidate, Mitt Romney (affectionately called a Mo-Mo by all Massholes) — I now know whom to call next time I write anything directly or even remotely related to the lexicon of the great Bay State.

    That said, while YOU fine folks may not call Dunkin Donuts “Do-Dos,” others do (if there was any mistake made in the article it was not listing all the colorful and creative names you wonderfully warm New England folks have for the various fried-bread concoctions used to stuff your collective pie holes).

    Oh, look, here’s one example (emphasis mine):

    “Posted by Bob M (Member # 38) on 11-21-2000, 07:36 AM:

    I’ve never had a Krisp Kremes donut. If you are concerned about the fact that donuts can cause expansion of your waist line, just say no to do-dos (pronounced doe-does). They even have a special program in MASSACHUSETTS called DARE, DONUT AWARENESS RESISTANCE EDUCATION. One of those help to keep cops off of donuts.

    One area radio station ran a special called “Cop/No Cop”. A listener would have to guess if there would be a cop in a donut shop that the radio station called at random. Most often than not there would be a cop there. Unfortunately, that doesn’t give you a fair and accurate representation because not all cops that patronize donut shops eat donuts. Most are there for coffee.

    The count on deck is 2 3/4 DO-DOS out of my allotted 6 DO-DOS for the year. I must admit I’ve eaten a lot of DUNKIN DONUTS bagels over the last 11 months.

    From the East Coast where you would think winter had arrived with temperatures in the 20’s and 30’s. So far no snow and a prediction that temps may go up to 60 this weekend. You have to love NEW ENGLAND!


    That and other references to Dunkin “Do-Dos” can be found on a wonderful little thing on the Internet called “Google.”

    But seriously folks, thanks for reading and writing.

    To all, I say, Ha Ho! (Happy Holidays).

  12. Rob Close

    you don’t think it’s odd that we’ve lived somewhere for decades and haven’t heard a term before? as a social phenomenon, it could be noteworthy. but ya’ll just wanna be jerks and call people names – none of us ever said “this author is a jerk or idiot or wrong” – just that we thought it was weird that we’d never heard this before. and that so many of us FELLOW AMERICANS who happen to have been born in the northeast (oh, but hate, please, it’s so mature and respectable) haven’t heard this, it’s interesting to us.

  13. Nam Vet

    Do-do. Da-da. Mom-ma. Hor-see. Look. See Dick run. See Jane eat the do-do. See Dick say “yum-yum”. Baby talk in Boston. How quaint. But not here in North Carolina. We say stuff like “and make that 2 orders of grits and extra gravy on those biscuits. And don’t forget the country ham.” Y’all come back now ya hear?

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