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An open letter to McDonald’s
I just saw a McDonald’s commercial, in which you show Quarter Pounder with cheese, wrapped with your whole “loving it” campaign. Then I thought about all those reports how your earnings are down 20% in recent time. Forgetting for a moment how the stock price is up about 50% in the past 5 years, let me give you my explanation for your one-fifth decline in business.
Everyone knows your commercials are a lie.
Your new marketing plan is intended to lure back the people who have abandoned the brand – people just like me. Your commercial shows a beautiful sandwich being assembled with tasty-looking ingredients. McDonald’s has also been struggling to “enhance” its menu with healthier foods, but the attrition is not slowing. Why?
Allow me to explain.
In the real world, your food looks nothing like it does in commercials. It’s smashed, smushed, smaller, rushed and definitely not as tasty-looking, or as tasty as I had hoped it would be.
I’ve got guilt issues here.
Your commercial is all warm and fuzzy. Yay! No guilt! But I don’t feel it because I want a cheeseburger, and cheeseburgers aren’t a healthy choice, so I feel guilty. And if I’m going to eat one, it’s had better be a damn good cheeseburger, made with real food. I’m not going to go eat bread that doesn’t mold, meat that doesn’t rot, with a side of fries that come from potatoes that will never sprout, and an HFCS-laden beverage that will do more to hurt my insides than just about anything else the FDA claims humans can be fed. Then there are the sub-par wages and working conditions for your employees. I’m just not lovin’ it.
If you want to know how a burger should taste, go have a Five Guys.
Yes, I said that. And if you sold burgers that taste like that, and doubled-down with organic meat and bread and toppings, and fries made from organic potatoes… I’d be in for a number-one-combo today.
You already know this is true, because you dumped your holdings in Chipotle when they refused to lower their food standards and combine their food sourcing and distribution with yours.
You’re just afraid of reinventing the wheel. I’m sure the brand purists don’t want you to change. Well, newsflash: the crap you serve today is not what you served 50 years ago. I’ll concede that this is largely due to the commercialization of the food production industry. But you’ve just made it worse by cheapening your product so you could maximize shelf-life and profit.
And don’t tell me I could get a salad wrap instead. I’m not interested in eating your salad that never turns brown, topped with dressing that will put more calories and fat in me than a Big Mac. It’s not about avoiding the unhealthy foods. It’s about you serving chemicals – poisons – in your food. The pink slime opened my eyes; and although you claim to not use that stuff anymore, I know your food is still devoid of anything nutritional. The slick food quality section of your web site, to me, looks like a heavily researched and produced spin, intended to reverse the perception of your food being sub-par. But I don’t buy it.
There’s a difference between a cheeseburger and fries being high in fat and sodium (which isn’t really good for you) versus eating amonium-hydroxide, sodium propionate, and other crap you infuse into your foods, which is really bad for you. Yes, yes, I know, the FDA says it’s safe. Well I disagree. And you’re down 20%. Do the math.
And while people have explained that chemicals aren’t why your foods don’t spoil, you know McDonald’s tastes differently in other countries. Your food tastes better, in my opinion, in Canada and Mexico and all over Europe, where they don’t allow you to feed the consumer the chemicals and nonsense that the (arguably useless) FDA allows here in the States.
The problem is not what you serve, is what’s in what you serve. Change that, and I’ll come back (every now and then).
Hey, that’s better than never!
The sight of police lights ahead prompt me to check my speed… 60mph.
I don’t really drive like a knucklehead any more.
Then the light Sunday afternoon traffic grinds to a rubbernecking crawl.
“You rubbernecking Idiots!” I share my disapproval tersely with my wife and kids… my condescending disapproval directed at the slowing mass of cars that snared me.
Unable to escape the moving roadblock, I relent and look to the other side of the highway; 495 Eastbound is completely closed. That never happens unless there’s an investigation… With a fatality.
And there it was. A white sheet draped over the unmistakable shape of a person, in the middle lane.
There was a makeshift barricade attempting to give the deceased some dignity.
Suddenly, I’m not in such a hurry any more. There was nothing surreal about someone who is no more, lying motionless on the cold, hard pavement. Friend, please take an extra minute to get where you’re going, so you *do* get there.
A group of scientists placed five monkeys in a cage and in the middle, a ladder with bananas on top.
Every time a monkey went up the ladder, the scientists soaked the rest of the monkeys with cold water.
After a while, every time a monkey went up the ladder, the other ones beat up the one on the ladder.
After some time, no monkey dared to go up the ladder regardless of the temptation.
Scientists then substituted one of the monkeys. The first thing this new monkey did was to go up the ladder. Immediately, the other monkeys beat it up.
After several beatings, the new member learned not to climb the ladder even though it never knew why.
The second monkey was substituted and the same occurred; the first substituted monkey also participated on the beating of the second monkey. A third monkey was changed and the pattern was repeated. The fourth was substituted and the beating was repeated. Finally the fifth monkey was replaced.
Now, there is a group of 5 monkeys, none of which ever received a cold shower. Yet they continue to beat up any monkey that attempts to climb the ladder.
If it were possible to ask the monkeys why they beat up those who attempt to climb the ladder, no doubt their answer would be: “I don’t know. That’s how things are done around here.”
Does that sound familiar?
In our lives, is there a way other than the status quo?
Source: some post on FB full of grammatical and spelling errors.