I once worked for a classic rock station where the program director was asked by a listener why we didn't mix in new music. He invoked the "Kentucky Fried Chicken" theory saying that the reason you can't get a hamburger at KFC is because they do chicken right. If only IHOP thought this way. They could have avoided what could be the biggest marketing disaster since "New Coke."

In case you haven't heard, "IHOP," which stood for "International House of Pancakes" has now become "IHOB" which stands for "International House of Burgers." When they first came out with "IHOB" they made us wait to see what the B would stand for. I was thinking "breakfast," which would have been a much better idea. First I was thinking, why would you want to change IHOP in the first place? It's a great catchy name and the "International" give you world domination on pancakes. Although, I don't know of any IHOPs in third world countries or any countries for that matter.

Other than Perkins, I can't think of any pancake competition for the former IHOP other than one of the many "Uncle Bucks" or "Grannies" that spring up all along vacation spots to give you the feeling that there really is some old uncle or grandma back there making their secret recipe for pancakes. Truth is chances are, it's probably some hung over kid trying to earn enough money to party at the shore and/or pay for college.

Nevertheless "IHOP" is now the International House of Burgers and the reviews are not good. It would have been surprising if they were. It takes a lot to compete with all the new burger chains that are still trying to compete with the classics. IHOB had a classic. They were out in front with pancakes and could have built on that. Perhaps a "Brunch Burger" wrapped in a pancake. Wouldn't that just make sense? Then again, none of this makes sense if you're IHOP, rather IHOB. If IHOB is smart, they change back quickly before someone jumps up and takes the pancake crown. Perhaps "Uncle Bills" or maybe "Aunt Jemima?"

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