Excerpt From Fast Food Rundown

“The market is a tool, and a useful one. But the worship of this tool is a hollow faith. Far more important than any tool is what you make with it.”

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So, as some of you may know, while this blog tends to delve into politics and emotional baggage and the like, it’s also got a bit of a culinary bent, and today in the spirit of celebration (i’m fully vaxxed y’all!) I’m gonna run down the fast food restaurants and it will be greatly unsatisfying but you’re gonna be unable to stop reading even after you’re no longer hungry….er….you get the idea. Let’s begin. Why don’t we start with these young upstarts: some bright youngsters with an even brighter future called….

McDonalds

What can I say about McDonalds that hasn’t been said about Buc Nasty’s suit? It looks bombed out and depleted. Seriously though, McDonalds occupies a shockingly unique position in the pantheon of food purveyors in that it’s ubiquitous, it’s by far the biggest business that comes to anyone’s mind anywhere when someone asks “what’s a big ass business?” and it’s completely unique in its offerings.

Consider this: nothing whatsoever tastes like a McDonalds cheeseburger. Nothing. Certainly there aren’t other burgers out there that taste like them burgers. I suppose maybe if you went to Albania or something and got the weird sweet beef and cheese breakfast pastry it may kinda approximate the flavor, but even then I’m just wildly speculating. There’s nothing like the flavor of McDonalds burgers, for better or worse. These are just facts. I have spoken and I am correct. Anyway…

Let’s move on and see what else the menu holds…

McNuggets? Get the fuck out of here. These things are AMAZING (again, in a very unique way)! As I alluded to, like all fast food they are deeply unsatisfying, but they are fun to eat. Also, they don’t taste like anything else on earth, despite the fact that they pretty much are the thing that all the other nuggets on said earth are copying. No one else can do it. No one can match the clown’s fries either (see In n Out down below). Why is that? It’s because McDonalds is weirdly unique in its ubiquity. It’s an insane dichotomy that is dizzying to consider, so why do it? Just acquiesce already.

Speaking of nuggets, some of you will know this and some of you will be like WHAAAAA? but there used to be a nugget sauce called Hot Mustard, which is for some fucked up reason discontinued in Chicago (BSCBT world HQ), even though it’s available almost everywhere else, and here’s the fucked up thing: it’s not good. It’s not a good mustard, it’s not hot. it checks none of the boxes alluded to in the name at all. However, somehow it’s amazing.

If I go to Springfield, Illinois for example, I transpose my usual double cheeseburger order (here’s an interesting aside [ed note: not actually interesting]. My dad was such a huge fan of the double cheeseburger that when they discontinued it in like uh….I’m guessing here but it was right around 1980….he was like the first diva to make them make him a double cheeseburger even though it was no longer an item they offered. He’s the first person I ever saw “order off menu” even though now all y’all do that shit) anyway, that was a long parenthetical digression so I’m gonna go ahead and restart this sentence: When it’s there, I get nuggets just for the Hot Mustard sauce. The fact that they don’t have it in my home town is a war crime.

Here’s the thing: McDonalds isn’t ‘good’ per se. It can’t be because there’s nothing to even compare it to. what it is is comfort food in a very specific niche that happens to also be the biggest food provider in the entire world.

My friend loves the filet o fish, which, against all better judgment she refers to as the fish filet. She’s vegetarian, but she recalls liking it with something gross as hell like 3x the tartar sauce (mr burns voice: let them have their tar tar sauce) and I mean, I feel like eating fish in general can be a kind of wild risky proposition. Having it funneled through a fast food conglomerate…worse, to put it MILDLY.

I eat fish, but from McDonalds? I don’t fuck with that, y’all. Even though I suppose it’s not like the cows or chickens have it any better. The thing is that for real, fast food fish seems like a weird thing. Anything that can be abbreviated as FFF (fast food fish) is probably questionable, right?

Aside from that, what do we have? the McRib? eh…That shit’s for uncles. There’s also the wonderful history of McDonaldland which, I mean the mayor’s head was a big mac and there was a burglar who traded in trafficking and swiping hamburgers, which, AWESOME, and then there was a big purple blob who was apparently from Ireland (????), since when his uncle (who was green!) would show up to drop off the shamrock shakes every March, they had a thing going on that implied that while maybe they weren’t exactly down with Gerry Adams or anything, they at the very least they had their roots in the emerald aisles.

In short, McNuggets, weird pastry burgers, and of course the constabulary that has sandwiches as heads are all societal contributions that we have no choice but to thank our golden arched overlords for. Is the food great? Depends. I’ve really enjoyed McDonalds in the past. It’s definitely and by far the most fascinating restaurant to ever exist for reasons expressed above. That will be all. Let’s move on.

Burger King

Man, it’s so weird. People have a lot of opinions on BK. Some people say that it’s like McDonalds for black folks (I have never seen evidence of this but I’ve heard this stated a LOT), some people think it’s garbage food, but I like BK. I think it’s good. I especially like that they have gone next level with creating stoner food. They do chicken fries. Fries that are also chickens. That’s dope. they also did some shit that had to do with jalapeño poppers and Cheetos? Sign me up. When I was in high school I absolutely went and got a Burger King chicken sandwich every single day at 315 and smoked and drank coffee and wondered if I could ever get Stacy Sardella to pay attention to me.

This is the end of the free excerpt. There is a lot more, from Taco Bell to Wendy’s to Sbarro to Naugles and Runza and more. Pls consider subscribing. It is fun for me to write for you and I hope it’s fun for you to read it.

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