Unique ways of eating hot dogs is a New England tradition. I learned this during my 2009 jaunt to Troy.
Providence, Rhode Island, has it's own peculiar frankfurter traditions. First of all, their called weiners. Don't call them anything else. And they're served automatically with mustard, meat sauce (really, a kind of chili), raw onions and celery salt, unless you specify otherwise—and you would never do that.
Ground zero of these traditions is Olneyville New York System weiners, a mini-chain that has outposts in Providence and Cranston. It's run by Greg Stevens, whose family moved from Brooklyn (hence, "New York System") to Rhode Island in the 1940s. He admits that there was a weiner tradition in Providence before his clan got there, but it's sure about the details. People generally order three at a time, and down the weiners with coffee milk, another odd Rhody culinary habit. It's the kind of place that that annoying man Guy Fieri would feature on has show. And he has. In 2010.
The weiners are good (it's the celery salt that makes them), if a guaranteed heartburn special in the making. The Olneyville location where I ate them was even better. A counter and a bunch of booths and a strip of white squares above the counter advertising the other things besides weiners you could order. The layout, and vibe, actually reminded me very much of Famous Lunch in Troy.
The guys behind the counter, meanwhile, are real characters, shooting the shit, and answering almost every question in a gently wise-guy manner. When I asked to speak to the owner, a tall, lanky counter man immediately pulled out his cell to call the boss. "I'm very connected," he said. "Very inside."