Disclaimer: I still eat McDonald’s.
“Every time the Royals hit a double this year, YOU get a McDouble for only $1 at McDonald’s!”
You’ve got to be kidding me, Rex Hudler. You’ve got to be kidding me, Ronald McDonald. Shame. Shame on you.
If you’re anything like me, you grew up eating McDonald’s. The original fast food restaurant, in its purest form, was true bliss. Walking in to the delicious smells of hamburgers and french fries. Taking your shoes off, throwing them in a cubby, and going to get lost in the mystical tunnels and platforms in the PlayPlace while you wait for your food to arrive. Eating a full greasy, yet delicious, meal for under $5, thanks to the dollar menu.
2 McDoubles ketchup only, a medium fry, and a large Dr. Pepper. $4 and some change. Dreams do come true.
I could go on and on. Many of us share those same innocent and formative experiences. But then things began to change. Starting a few years ago, McDonald’s voluntarily undertook a campaign of self-destruction. In doing so, it began losing its identity—the identity that made billions of people around the world fall in love with it. With every step McDonald’s took, it chose to turn its back on the American citizen.
The PlayPlace was the first to go. Some greedy shitheads at corporate decided they didn’t want to pay out for the lawsuits that come along with children mindlessly running around like banchies in a hazard-ridden playground, so instead they chose to strip away hours of pure enjoyment and fulfillment from young children. To rob them of a major part of their childhoods. To take the PlayPlace away. Might as well have stuck a knife in my heart. Strike 1.
The next fatality was the menu. More and more emphasis was put on integrating healthy food options—salads, wraps, etc.—that undermined what McDonald’s is meant to be all about. Americans go to McDonald’s for cheeseburgers. We go for heavily salted fries. We go for Big Macs. We go precisely because we want to get fat. We don’t go to McDonald’s to eat a damn salad. Strike 2.
These changes alone are likely enough to make Ronald McDonald turn over in his grave. But they aren’t the worst of it. No, the most egregious sin of them all came when it was decided that a McDouble would no longer cost $1. We collectively watched in horror as the price rose from $1.09, to $1.19, to $1.29, to $1.50, to, in many places, upwards of $2. I gotta be honest: with each step, a part of me died.
Something I thought I could always count on, something I thought I could always revert back to, was being stripped away. $1 McDoubles meant so much more to me than the price. It’s about the comfort. It’s all I’ve ever known. It’s a part of who I am. And I’m usually OK with change. But I cannot be complicit when my prized fast food dish doubles in price. It’s wrong. It’s a travesty. And when I hear REX HUDLER telling me that I only get a McDouble for a dollar if the Royals hit a double, well… it’s going to be a long year.