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Big Mac Attack

, , , | Hopeless | July 12, 2017

(I babysit three children every weekday. Once a week, I make dinner as well. Sometimes their parents join us, sometimes they don’t. The parents are health food nuts, so the kids have never set foot in a fast food place. Fortunately, the family keeps a very well-stocked pantry, they’re not vegetarians, and no one has any food allergies, so my options are pretty much unlimited. One day, when I am going to be making dinner and the parents will not be with us, I have this discussion with the kids several hours before dinnertime.)

Kid #1: *trying to be casual* “I wonder what a Big Mac is like…”

Me: “You’ve had burgers before. You know what meat tastes like.”

Kid #1: “Yeah, but Big Macs are fancy. They’ve got special sauce and stuff.”

Me: “Fast food isn’t very good. The ingredients come from questionable sources, safety procedures leave something to be desired, and they’ve got so much sodium that wildlife could use them as salt licks. Plus the flavors are so mixed together that you can’t taste anything particular, and the texture’s usually pretty wonky.”

Kid #2: “Just once won’t kill us. Mom and Dad aren’t gonna be home tonight. We could check it out tonight. Just once, please? We won’t tell. Promise!”

(I instantly decide on my course of action and pull up the McDonald’s menu on my phone.)

Me: “You guys tend to take a long time making decisions at restaurants. I don’t want to stand in line for an hour, so make your decisions now.”

(They do indeed take about an hour picking and choosing their meals. I take careful notes, including who wants pickles, cheese, etc. Eventually, dinnertime arrives.)

Me: “Okay, kids, dinner’s ready.”

Kid #3: “But I thought we were going to McDonald’s.”

Me: “We are.”

(They looked at each other, confused, but obediently trooped into the kitchen. Laid out at each place were the exact meals they had requested, freshly hand made. I had even Googled a recipe for Big Mac sauce. The meal was a big hit with the kids, and the parents cracked up when I told them. We have since done the same thing with other fast food places with equal success. Recently, Kid #1 confessed that he had gotten a friend to smuggle him a real Big Mac, and that after my fresh home cooking, he had found the real thing massively disappointing.)

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