07/9/11

a fake fast-food religious experience

I’m a vegetarian who loves McDonalds. I love McDonald’s French fries so much; I think they are the best kind. When I go to McDonalds I get the two cheeseburger meal without meat and I put French fries where the meat should be. I’m not proud of it but there it is. Last night there was a startlingly good-looking man working the drive thru window. (I’m preoccupied with how people look. I think it makes a big difference in how your life will be. I think that other people don’t acknowledge its influence enough.) Three things were clear from the start:

  1. This was a man with a leaning towards making the best of every situation.
  2. He had not been working the McDonald’s drive thru for very long.
  3. He longed for attention and love.

He told me my food would take hours because they were dropping new French fries for me. I really hate that. They taste better when they’ve become a little cold and stewing, in my opinion. He was nervous and apologetic but hoped his smile and upper arms would charm me. Seriously, he leaned forward and emphasized both those things. Sometimes I feel like I can see people in slow motion, and what I find out is a secret.

Really, the food took quite a long time, but I keep a computer in my pocket and I looked at twitter. I thought about my novel. Writers should never be bored, not really. He brought me my food. Your French fries are going to be so good now, he assured me. I asked him for a lot of ketchup, and he picked up a huge pile in his fist and grinned at me. I thought about telling him, “you’re too good-looking to work at McDonalds.” He would have really liked that. I felt so powerful. It was like someone had handed me a sword and I elected not to wield it. Instead I said, “I don’t have any ketchup at home,” because it’s true. I’m out of ketchup. He picked up the bin and dropped 6 pounds of ketchup in my bag, and then I drove off, instead of him climbing through the window into my car and coming home with me.

It’s a gift, don’t get me wrong, but somehow I just feel really burdened with all this ketchup. I guess I’m depressed about the extra packaging.