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Fast food purgatory and the elusive McRib


Am I the only one who finds it annoying in the extreme that when you’re in the drive-through line at any fast food joint, and you pull up to the speaker to place your order, before you can utter a word, it goes like this:

“Good afternoon, welcome to Burger Heaven, Mary Jo speaking, would you like to order our exciting new special three-pound burger combo with maple-cured bacon, gourmet cheddar cheese, special chuckwagon barbecue sauce, a bushel basket of fried potato wedges, and a gallon of your favorite soft drink? And you can add a bowl of blackberry cobbler with hand-dipped ice cream for just $2.95.”

Does anyone actually take them up on these sales pitches? Or does everyone, like me, knowing what they’re going to order before they ever drive up, impatiently sit there, waiting for Mary Jo to finish the canned sales spiel so they can order what they came for in the first place?

Yeah, I know, it’s all part of the company’s marketing schtick, but one wonders if it actually generates enough additional sales to offset the time it wastes in the ordering process — and the customer’s annoyance?

It would also be interesting to know how many millions of gallons of gasoline are burned in a year’s time by vehicles inching along in drive-through lines.

And speaking of fast food, one can only wonder at the spate of media hype in early November about Mickey D’s bringing back its McRib sandwich.

Not just at select stores around the nation, as in past resurrections, but we were told in almost reverential awe — available at every single McDonald’s in the U.S. of A.

And for a whole month!

There are, the media stories told us, vast legions of those who eagerly await the return of the McRib, a faux barbecue pork sandwich, complete with faux grill char marks (one can only wonder at the chemistry involved in that), slathered with a thick barbecue sauce, and adorned with pickle slices (?) and onions (?).

Further, the stories related, there are diehard aficionados who, in past revivals of this gustatory delight, would drive hundreds of miles to one of the “select” stores purveying it. There are even websites devoted to finding McRib.

The mind boggles that anyone would drive hundreds of miles to eat anything McDonald’s.

But, having never personally partaken of this (allegedly) scrumptious treat, I hied me off to the nearest Mickey D’s to see firsthand what all the fuss was about.

“Uhh, I’m sorry,” the drive-through speaker gal advised after going through her extended spiel about a super-special overpriced iced drink, “we’re out of McRibs.”


“The truck didn’t come,” she explained. “Maybe tomorrow.”

Unlike the faithful, I didn’t drive hundreds of miles to another McDonald’s to find the elusive McRib. Now, November’s gone. Who knows when McRib will return?

I can wait.

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