Saturday, January 7, 2012

In Defense of McDonald's

I'm tired of everyone taking a dump on McDonald's.  It's easy to take a dump in the sandbox of the big buy on the block.  From teenage pregnancy to the troubles in Iran, just ask the pundits and McDonald's is ultimately to blame.  Mahmoud Ahmadinejad probably ate a Big Mac before slaughtering people.  

Morgan Spurlock's "Supersize Me" documentary was pure filth and lies, kind of like a Jerry Falwell special report.  McDonald's is like Budweiser--it's fine if you have some once a week, but if you are chugging beer three times a day, you aren't going to be healthy.  In one section of the film, Spurlock says he can't get an erection because he just had some McDonald's.  I'm sorry, but he's being a wimp.  Hell, I get an erection from eating McDonald's.  

You can't blame McDonald's for not trying.  They practically hold you down like the main character from a Clockwork Orange and force the nutritional information down.  I bought fries the other day and the nutritional information was written TWICE on the container.  When I looked under the tray paper, it was written on the back of that, too.  Plus it was posted on the wall at the ordering window AND there were paper brochures available as well.  I thought I was there to buy a calorie or something.  

People who eat at McDonald's know it isn't healthy.  That isn't a surprise to anyone.  They eat it because it tastes good, it is fast, and it is cheap.  Plus McDonald's is fun.  Where else can you go for the price of a happy meal and have your kids play on the jungle gym too?  If you live in the hood, McDonald's is the most fun, safest place for your kids to play without taking a bullet in a drive by.  

McDonald's is downright American.  In Europe, you can't even use the bathroom without a mean German woman demanding a quarter after you take a leak.  At good old McDonald's, they are more than happy to share their clean, shiny bathrooms with you.  And all you need to do is buy an inexpensive burger.  God bless them.  McDonald's is practically a shrine to Americanism.  It's the only place in Europe to get a hot apple pie any time of the day.

McDonald's is the anti-Wendy's.  There are a number of McDonald's that are in rural locations that are stellar.  With few other jobs available, some of these McDonald's have great employees who care.  My wife and I had McDonald's in Burbank, Ohio the other day.  The kid working at the desk had sunglasses.  He was about 20 years old.  He was taking our order while simultaneously taking an order for the drive through window.  Not only did he get our order right, the fries were piping hot, he gave us an extra large drink, and the sandwiches were amazing.  He was like Neo from the Matrix working his McDonald's magic.  It was beautiful.  

Life is unpredictable.  At work, you deal with prick bosses, prick employees, and customers with attitude.  At the end of the day, all you want is something to ease the strain.  McDonald's, for the most part, sells that kind of comfortable predictability.  For a cheap price, I can get medium grade food quickly which will improve my mood.  This is the genius of fast food.  McDonald's is the biggest because they get it right.  At McDonald's, when I order the Angus Bacon Cheeseburger, it actually tastes and looks just like the commercial.  When I go to Wendy's, I order a play dough like impostor that rapes my taste buds.  

Funny, but some of my earliest memories are visiting McDonald's.  I only remember them from the tender age of two because the experience was so fun.  Back then they cooked the french fries in beef tallow, so they were mind numbingly delicious.  Too bad the wet blanket consumer organizations made them switch to trans fats in the 1980's so we could clog our arteries.  I don't believe they are made with trans fats anymore.  I think they should go back to beef tallow or even bacon grease.  

There have been activist groups saying that we need to get rid of Ronald McDonald because he sends the wrong message to children.  The last time I checked, Ronald McDonald was busy building shelter for parents to stay with their sick children at the Ronald McDonald House.  Ronald McDonald is not like the evil, wet blanket Ronnie we grew up with--Ronnie Reagan.  That Ronnie was busy tearing down while good old Ronald McDonald has been there for us no matter what for the last 50 years.  He hasn't breaking unions.  He's been spreading happiness and fun.   I don't know about you, but for my money, Grimace, the Hamburgler and the Fry Guys are the shit.  When you can't even trust Santa not to molest you anymore, Ronald McDonald has never been accused of such atrocities.  He's too busy working on making another kind of chicken salad or something else ostensibly healthy we would rather not eat (pass the ketchup for my cheeseburger, please).  I've seen the commercials.  I know what Ronald McDonald does in his spare time--he helps lonely children feel cared about, he gives hot air balloons to sad people, and of course, he is always happy.  No Prozac for Ronald.  Some fries and a shake is all he needs to feel like a million happy meals.

Haters also mention that McDonald's manipulates children by offering them toys in their happy meals.  I'm sorry but little kids are reluctant eaters.  They don't eat to cover up their wounded, existentially depleted souls.  That is for adults.  If it takes a few toys to get your kids into McDonald's so you can relax, then so be it.  With the price of gas and health care nowadays, this might be the only toys your kids are ever going to get.  

So the next time someone poo poos McDonald's, don't let them get away with it.  "Don't shit in my sandbox", I like to say.  On a shitty day, I got Neo waiting for me with some sizzling fries and warm burgers to cover up the emptiness.  And for less than $5, I say that isn't so bad.


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