MILWAUKEE – The date is October 17th, 2020. What began as a relaxing dinner at Zebbs turned into a descent into hell for my husband Joe. Zebbs and Omega, are two similar eateries in Milwaukee separated by the narrow width of a city street. Now, two years after the infamous conflict that claimed thousands of lives, an ominous darkness now looms, as the ‘Zebbs/Omega Wars’ reveals its horrifying legacy.
Much like the ‘Bridge Wars’, everyone knows the story. A group of highschool students were given a twenty minute wait time at Omega, impatient, they walked across the street to Zebbs where they were seated immediately. Convinced Zebbs was stealing customers, Omega began a preliminary strike of the neighboring restaurant. The cold war was over, both restaurants sent their busboys to fight to the death in the middle of W Morgan Ave and it only escalated from there.
Thousands upon thousands of innocent civilians were caught in the crossfire before the US government finally intervened. My husband was one of them. Though he was physically unscathed his mind was forever changed. Most nights, Joe can be found in his study drowning his sorrows in a glass of bourbon, or emotionally bullying our children.
I’m still on Joe’s side. Though he is unable to escape the haunting echoes of the ‘Zebbs/Omega Wars’, moving forward is, in his words, “The best way to honor those who were lost.”
What side were you on?