On kids and whisper campaigns

In Medium Raw, Anthony Bourdain wrote about the ‘black propaganda’ campaign he’s waged against McDonalds, on behalf of his young daughter:

Where you take on Ronald and the King and the Colonel is in the streets — or more accurately, in the same impressionable young minds they have so successfully fucked with for so long.

My intention is to fuck with them right back.

So when Bourdain mentions to his toddler that Ronald McDonald is alleged to have cooties (and B.O.), he’s simply trying to level the playing field. I have not personally deployed this tactic. After all, I loved McDonald’s as much as the next kid (remember those Mac Tonight commercials?) and figure there’s not much harm in the occasional Happy Meal – though it is very, very occasional on our watch. But the McDonalds Drive Thru Center, a distillation of so much wrongness, has me rethinking things.

We have a lot of fun with a play kitchen in the basement – it’s not like I’m anti-play kitchen. Outfitted with an ice machine, grill, and ample cabinet space, it’s better-appointed than many actual kitchens. We make burgers, shakes, pasta, take turns as chef and diner. But it’s pretend-cooking actual food – a concept your kids are unlikely to pick up on passing burgers through a drive-thru window.

Kids also love to help out in the real kitchen. Sometimes that results in food you will serve, as was the case with the salad our 6 year-old prepared, start to finish, the other night. Sometimes not, as with the “soup” the 3 year-old conjured up and featuring tortilla chips, water, dried cranberries and salt. Regardless, they don’t need a toy to do this – and they’re less likely to pester you to make that drive-thru run.

Beckett’s Salad Recipe

1/4 head of cabbage

3 carrots

1/2 head of lettuce

Olive oil

Vinegar

Watch six year-old chop cabbage into small slices, carrots into perfect rounds and lettuce into gargantuan, shirt-spotting pieces, then mix oil and vinegar. Serve, and as you eat, wonder where your baby went.

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Author: Scott

I am a married father of two. I graduated from Rock Bridge High School and then Mizzou before spending six years in the Washington, D.C. area. We returned to Columbia, Missouri in 2006.

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