The end of innocence

He was a sweet, golden-haired boy, and his mother had kept him pure. Then I came along. I, with my worldly daughters. We, experienced in the ways of the flesh — the ground and re-formed, battered and deep fried avian flesh — gave a little boy his first bite ever of fast food. And not just any fast food. The worst of the worst. The iconic fast food. He was a McDonald’s virgin no more.

In a world where it is axiomatic that children love McDonald’s, my friend had managed to rear her son to the cusp of his third birthday without his ever having tasted the forbidden fare that beckons from under the Golden Arches, shining with grease and bedecked with Happy Meal toys. But we were in the car and I needed coffee, sick addict that I am, and to my knowledge McDonald’s has the best fast food coffee there is. So in we pulled into the drive-thru.

It wasn’t anywhere near meal time, so I thought I was safe, but alas, Cordelia and Theresa immediately started a chorus of, “We want nuggets!” Elizabeth, bless her, turns up her nose in disdain at this sort of food. She’ll eat Subway, but loathes any other fast food, which warms my heart. Portia has no teeth. But Cordelia and Tess have the McDonald’s monkey on their back, and they have it bad. Now, I fear, so does that sweet, once pure boy.

I hope someday my friend can forgive me.

Comments 16

  1. Mad Mad Mom wrote:

    Depriving a child of McDonalds???? Why, that’s practically child abuse!

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 3:23 pm
  2. Julia wrote:

    I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve had other moms make sneering comments about fast food like they’d never let their kids have it after one of mine has let the dreaded M-word slip.

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 3:26 pm
  3. Dan wrote:

    My understanding is that Dunkin Donuts actually has the best fast-food coffee.

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 4:50 pm
  4. Grue in the Attic wrote:

    I’ve always been more of a Burger King fan myself.


    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 6:03 pm
  5. Martha Brozyna wrote:

    This is going to sound really strange, but I would do just about anything for my kids to eat a happy meal or a chicken nugget. My kids are such picky eaters that I think they’d starve to death if I didn’t make them eat. My daughter will eat fries, but my son won’t go anywhere near that stuff. He hides under the coffee table during meal time.

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 6:28 pm
  6. MIT Mommy wrote:

    I agree with Mad Mom. But, I would also put in the category of American culture. It is not fair to the child to keep him from it, and probably not even healthy!!

    And, a mom without coffee is a tragedy in itself . . . .

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 6:51 pm
  7. Brigette Russell wrote:

    Agreed, Dunkin Donuts has good coffee (isn’t it nice we can agree on some things, Dan?) but there wasn’t one around, just the standard lunch type fast food places.

    Agreed too about culture. It’s just part of being an American, and fine in moderation.

    Only one of my kids likes fries, which is weird. And only one (a different one from the one who likes fries) likes hamburgers. I’d think they were all switched at birth or something if they didn’t like pizza…and if total strangers hadn’t said to me before, “Oh, you must be Elizabeth’s mom!”

    It must be really difficult, Martha, when you hear other mothers complaining about what their kids eat and you’d give just about anything for yours to be able to do it.

    Posted 05 Feb 2009 at 11:10 pm
  8. Lauren wrote:

    I justify McDonald’s and Chick-Fil-A nuggets by ordering apples/fruit instead of fries MOST of the time. All of mine that eat enjoy fast food and fries. Although given the choice they all would choose Daddy’s food.

    Posted 06 Feb 2009 at 4:26 pm
  9. Grue in the Attic wrote:

    Although given the choice they all would choose Daddy’s food.

    No restaurant, no matter how fancy, truly stands up to backyard barbeque and a good home-cooked steak.

    Posted 06 Feb 2009 at 5:10 pm
  10. Daani-Ruth wrote:

    My kids used to love the Golden Arches, but have now sworn their allegiance to the golden arrow ( “In-N-Out”).

    Posted 06 Feb 2009 at 6:08 pm
  11. Brigette Russell wrote:

    Lauren wrote:
    Although given the choice they all would choose Daddy’s food.

    Since Daddy’s a chef, I don’t doubt it for a minute! Mine prefer my cooking too.

    Posted 07 Feb 2009 at 5:16 am
  12. Foxfier wrote:

    I know a gal who doesn’t like chocolate– just flat out doesn’t care for it– and whose children never had it before they were six and got “funny skittles” at a birthday party…..

    Almost glad she has such a huge flaw as not liking chocolate, since she’s dang near perfect otherwise!

    Posted 07 Feb 2009 at 8:34 am
  13. Brigette Russell wrote:

    Did the kids like the M&Ms, or was her dislike of chocolate a heritable trait? Some of my kids seem to have inherited some of my food likes and dislikes, some of their dads’ but it’s hit or miss. All 3 of them (I’m leaving the baby out, naturally) love artichokes, which is a weird thing for kids to like, but I like them. I also love mushrooms, but only one of the kids likes them; my husband hates them.

    Posted 07 Feb 2009 at 3:27 pm
  14. Nicole wrote:

    We live in a pretty suburban community and we have this McDonald’s plopped in the oddest spot about a half a mile from my home. No other signs of fast food (except a Subway and Dunkin Donuts in a strip mall) unless you drive out to the shopping area 15-20 minutes away. It’s so close the elementary school kids have a field trip every year “walk to McDonalds” in the spring. We drive by numerous times a day. Thank goodness all 8 (one doesn’t chew real food yet) of my kids are sick of it and don’t even ask anymore!

    Posted 07 Feb 2009 at 3:30 pm
  15. Nicole wrote:


    LOL – two of my kids will eat a can of black olives as a meal if I let them. I like them, hubby hates them.

    Posted 07 Feb 2009 at 3:32 pm
  16. soskxhg wrote:

    uPTatW nxxgryirhysc

    Posted 21 Apr 2011 at 6:45 pm

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