Monday, March 17, 2008

The McDonalds Saga - A True Story

I do not eat at the most popular fast food restaurant franchise in world. Or at McDonald's either. (Ha!)

I have boycotted the chain for almost 20 years now. I don't eat the burgers, the fries, the shakes, apple pies or even drink water out of McDonald's cooler that sprayed it into a McDonald's cup. If you insist on something from there, I'll stop and do you the favor, but nothing of theirs crosses my lips. A coworker brought me a shake from there once and I'll admit it tasted good..till I saw the McD on the label. I stopped instantly and dropped the rest in the trash, and cussed him out in anger. So why you ask...why the animosity against this corporate monster who brought such lovable processed food pitchmen as Ronald and the Hamburgler.

Yeah, this too is a college story.

I was a broke college student in the summer of 1988 in Tallahassee, Florida. I was taking summer classes, and living low as it were. Very very low. Ramen noodles low. But I'd run into a spot of luck, and in the Olympic Medal Game run by McDonalds that summer, I had scratched off Women's 100m, in which the venerable Florence Griffith Joyner - Flojo - was running on a track somewhere in Seoul, Korea. The world record holder. With the hot pink one legged tights. And if America won the event...then I got a free Big Mac.

Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce cheese pickles onions on a sesame seed bun. cheese, but food. For a brother living off ramen noodles and jiffy cake, this would be the highlight of the week. I dreamed about that Big Mac.

It was the McDonalds on North Monroe - 1944 North Monroe...just up the street from Barnacle Bills.

I hadn't eaten all. Day. Long.

I pulled into the drive thru - ordered a my free sammich and a water.

And do you know that trick told me that the US did not win the gold, but the silver and all I could get for my gamepiece was some fries? I'm like WTF? (I think I actually said it into the microphone, but for decorum's sake I won't repeat fuck here)

So I went inside to discuss this with someone who knew something. I was very hungry.

I don't normally do confrontation (it's not my thing) but I had to talk to the shift supervisor.

The shift supervisor reiterated that per their information the US had won the Silver in that event and thus only fries were offered as the prize. I informed them that I knew FloJo was running, had taken the gold and was still running for all we knew.

The manager then informed they got their information direct from Seoul. I told them I got my information from the local newspapers and ESPN.

At that point, fed up...I told the manager right then and there, that if I didn't get my Big Mac, that I would NEVER EAT AT A MCDONALDS AGAIN!

And as I haven't eaten there for almost twenty can kinda guess how that conversation ended.

In retrospect, it turns out the US won both gold and silver in the women's 100m that year (isn't that funny) and the company may have been trying to cheap it's way out of paying off in sandwiches. Over time, McDonald's has got the worst end of the deal. In high school, McDonald's had been a regular hangout. In college it might have become as well. As it turned out, when we all piled in the car to get food after that incidient, everybody knew what restaurant wasn't on the list of potential stops. And over time it may have cost that corporation as much, I don't know, $5000...

...guess who's laughing now McDonalds. ha!

Barkeep...let me get one of them Wendy's frostys.

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