The Barbecue Sauce Walk of Shame

7 Jan

It was 5:00 p.m. I was starving. And there was a McDonalds. Not my favorite place, but the vision of burgers were spinning in my head. Oh, why did I not follow the excellent advice of Weight Watchers, i.e; “pack a snack”? So I waited in line, freezing, until it was my turn. “I’ll have the uh, meal with the two cheeseburgers—but no cheese.” The worker, from Moldovastan or Khazukrainarus or wherever was quite perplexed. “But chizburger without chiz is Hambourger,” he said.

“I Knooowwww. But they don’t have a ‘two hamburger’ meal.” Somehow this got into a complicated discussion so I looked up at the menu board again and said, “Oh forget it, I’ll take the McRib.”

Friends, I beg you. Do not make this mistake. Learn from my sad experience. For many, the McRib is a legend. It only appears at mysterious times, unannounced. (Although my son says the mystery can be solved by knowing When Pork Is Cheap). It’s not one of those regional specialties, like the Teriyaki burger of Japan or lobster roll of Maine, both of which I confess I have seen.

My plan was to read a book and eat at the same time. This can be done with the diminutive and ladylike Chizburger without Chiz,i.e., hamburger, where you can hold the small disk in one hand and turn pages with the other. But the McRib is a mightier foe. First of all, there are two McRibs in a very soft and spongy bun. They are slathered in an astonishingly viscous lubricant, i.e; their sugary BBQ sauce. This means that the minute you pick it up—and you had better be grasping it with two hands—the two grayish ridged McRibs encased within the bun start slipping sideways in two different directions. Within two bites, my fingers had ripped through the soft bun. Barbecue sauce was dripping onto my library book. It was in my hair, across my face, on my glasses. And the slippery patties had plopped out of their bun back into their little rectangular (octangular?) carapace. Three times. Was sauce on my shirt? But of course. Had I remembered napkins? Oh no indeed. I had to do the Barbecue Walk of Shame through the whole restaurant to the napkin holder, where, like the true red, white, and blue American I am, I took about 30 napkins to clean up the carnage. Honestly, it was like CSI: MacDonalds. I half expected the Team to start examining the barbecue sauce spatter pattern.

Now, another thing that struck me was the very odd texture of the patties themselves. The incredible unmeatiness of them. You know how meat usually has vertical lines in it? The McRib was more like a piece of bread fresh the microwave. It had little breadlike holes in it. It was chewy, like meat, but with a strangely unyielding quality. Was it porklike in any way? It’s hard to tell because of the barbecue sauce. It is a testament to my stupidity in not eating lunch that I managed to eat half of this item before shoving it through the overfull garbage can’s lid. And now, Time magazine has confirmed my opinion of the McWretchedness of my dining experience. They say it has 70 ingredients—including some that are just dandy and others that are used in yoga mats and sneaker bottoms.  Why Lovin’ the McRib Isn’t Heart Smart |

However, I know that to some, my disdain for the McRib is fightin’ words. According to the Wall Street Journal, some people love the McRib with such fierce intensity that they will chase it down wherever they can find it on a McRib Locator.

Bless their hearts. In the meantime, I think I’ll stick to Smashburger in the future, whose beauteeful burgers and rosemary fries could make a girl weep.

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