Tag Archives: fast food

Da bomb

Did the F-bomb recently fall off the list of most offensive curse words when I wasn’t paying attention?

More and more, I hear it creep into everyday conversation.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m neither sanctimonious nor hypocritical. I’ll drop the bomb when I drop something on my toe. In the safe company of friends and family, I’ll throw it around when I’m throwing a tantrum.

But I certainly don’t use the F word in public, and never, ever in the company of a stranger. Call me an old fogey. Conditioned at an early age, I still bristle when I hear it (not as much as G.D., but a close second).

Recently my husband and I were sliding our plastic trays through the line at a rest stop carryout. The people in front of us were stopped, holding up the line. We waited patiently.

Wishing to go around them but not wanting to take cutsies, I finally asked the woman, “Excuse me, are you waiting for an order?”

She replied, “Why, are we f—ing you up?” (I believe the word she was looking for was “holding.”)

We scooted around the waiting couple and got the heck out of there. Yes, heck.

Saturday night, we were having dinner at the bar in a neighborhood place. The dinner crowd had ebbed, so it was pretty quiet.

All of a sudden, I heard the woman beside me lash out at her partner, in an outside voice, “You’re just so f—ing impetuous!”

What’s the world coming to, gosh darn it?


Filed under All Things Wordish, Rants and Raves

That’s no fun

About six months ago, San Francisco’s board of supervisors voted to ban the inclusion of toys in kids’ meals at fast food chains. So began the demise of the McDonald’s Happy Meal in that neck of the woods. I suggested an underground market to keep kids from melting down when their meals consisted of, well, meals.

This week, fast food chain Jack in the Box announced it would eliminate toys from its kids’ meals.

A company spokesman said the decision had more to do with the chain’s focus on food than on the matter of toys.

Luring children into fast food restaurants with colorful toys has become an issue of moral debate in our nation, fueled largely by food-policing advocacy groups.

One question becomes whether these kids are driving themselves to score the coveted toys and the fat laden lunches that accompany them. Another question is the company’s latest ad campaign that targets the stoner clientele Jack in the Box enjoys in its late-night hours and how that squares with JITB’s cute and bouncy persona.

But the question lurking in my mind is why a company bearing this name is turning against toys. Does anyone else see the perversity in that?


Filed under Food, Marketing/Advertising/PR

The meal deal

This past couple of weeks have been a time of major purging at my house. In preparation for a major home improvement project—installation of central air conditioning—my husband and I have been going through 20 years’ worth of attic accumulation and carrying clutter and memories out the door.

This week we donated our son’s baby furniture, equipment and worn stuffed animals to charity. Yesterday, we said good bye to six window unit air conditioners. Serious purging.

Still, there remains a large bin in our basement that has gone untouched for 20 years. We were never quite sure what to do with its contents. Until now.

I have an idea for turning clutter into cash—by selling Happy Meal toys on street corners in San Francisco. Once the Board of Supervisors’ ban on offering free toys with junk food takes effect, I’ll hit up parents leaving McDonald’s with their kids in mid-meltdown, revealing plastic characters, from Aladdin to Zazu, nestled in the lining of my trench coat.

Will the ban make a difference, you wonder? I don’t know. I think kids get hooked on McDonald’s because it tastes better than Mom’s meatloaf and brussels sprouts. The Happy Meal wasn’t introduced until I was in college, after I’d been already been hooked on McDonald’s fries and chocolate shakes for more than 10 years. And hot apple pie before they banned frying it in lard. It never took a plastic Disney character to lure me over to the dark side.

 Psst, need to score a Nemo? I can hook you up.


Filed under Food, Health, Marketing/Advertising/PR, News, Politics

Never on Sunday

What’s your favorite fast food restaurant?  Okay, okay, if you had no other option but to eat on the run, what would be your choice? 

Mine is Chick fil-A.  I’ve totally bought into their Save the Cow campaign, EAT MOR CHIKIN (I won’t fault a cow for poor spelling).  But also, even though I’ve got no beef with beef, those nasty fast food burgers can pretty hard to choke down.

My husband’s a McDonald’s man, so when we’re on the road, that’s where we go.  All hail the Dollar Menu.

But when it’s my choice alone, I choose the Chick.

For better or worse, Chick-fil-A is different from the other chains in three ways that I can discern.  One, the place offers no hamburgers.  I am sure their chicken sandwiches are loaded with fat and calories and all kinds of nasty stuff, but they taste pretty good on their buttered buns after a long stretch in the car.  Two, their employees bend over backwards to be nice and helpful.  Three, they are not open, and apparently never will be, on Sundays.

They take a lot of heat for it too.  From mall owners and customers for obvious reasons, but also from a few employees and observers who criticize the staunch position held by company founder S. Truett Cathy, a devout Christian who remains firm in his position to put family and worship ahead of business.  Over the years, the company has gotten in some legal and PR hot water for some of its policies.  I just hope the company is taking these seriously and treating people fairly.

That aside, though, it is hard to fault a business owner for closing down one day a week, for whatever reason.

In a recent interview for Advertising Age magazine, Chick-fil-A’s vice president of marketing David Salyers was asked what he thought would  you think would happen first, a hamburger on the menu, or a Chick-fil-A opening on a Sunday? Salyers answered, “Definitely a hamburger on the menu.  Not even close.”

I too take Sundays off, in part as my own Sabbath observation and in part to rest, renew and be better at what I do.  I just hope my CHIKIN cravings pop up on the other six days.

See you Monday.


Filed under Food, Marketing/Advertising/PR