I wasn’t trying to order a Happy Meal.
I was making a (contact-free) goodwill delivery after work tonight, and I was indulging a very bad habit I’ve built up during the last few months.
I wouldn’t go so far as to call it agoraphobia or anything, but I have enough built-up anxiety about leaving the house that whenever I have that rare errand that goes beyond my usual 2.5 mile radius*, I am way too likely to reward myself with some McDonald’s takeout.
[Obligatory fat liberation SIDEBAR: there isn’t anything inherently evil about McDonald’s food or any other sort of fast food. Eat it if you want to, eat as much of it as you want to. I’m just feeling a bit concerned about this habit for me due to my long history of addictive behaviors as a mode of self-soothing uncomfortable feelings.]
So, I asked Waze to find me a location that was just a small detour from my actual route, and hit the drive-thru. Where I asked for “a chicken McNuggets meal.”
(Didn’t they used to be called meals? Short for “Extra Value Meal”?)
Anyhow, when I pulled up to the window, the cashier was giving me a bit of side-eye, which didn’t entirely make sense to me until she handed out the mini-me sized soda and the cardboard box.
In that moment, I wondered about correcting the order and asking for grown-up portions. But I still have a strong enough belief in following the universe’s unexpected signs that I decided just to take my little cardboard box and head on with my drive.
The surprising thing is that it kind of turned out to be the perfect right-sized bite of McD’s flavor to fulfill my craving. Like this completely accidental kind of portion control.
[Obligatory fat liberation SIDEBAR, part 2: there is nothing objectively wrong with eating big portions of anything you want to, including big portions of fast food. However, since I’m having some worries about this addictive/compulsive patterns, I am highly comforted in seeing some flexibility and some options in how I can modulate these behaviors from day to day depending on my state.]
But still: there was the cutest, teeny-tiniest carton of fries that gave me just enough of that salty-fatty-greasiness to scratch the culinary itch. And then apple slices as a bonus!
Plus a toy. What’s not to love?
I’m still not exactly sure how I should have ordered to get an adult-sized meal. But I’m not sure I’m gonna worry too much about that.
‘Cos I may be actively putting Happy Meals in the rotation going forward.
* That distance covers my 4 essential stops: drugstore, groceries, post office and library.
- Happy Meal: Taken by the author, subject to a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International license.
- Dollhouse breakfast: Flickr user Stéphanie Kilgast, via a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) license.