07:01:32 am on
Tuesday 28 May 2024

Blame the Fries
Jennifer Flaten

Apparently, the Happy Meal is suffering an identity crisis. Turns out it doesn’t make kids happy. The Happy Meal makes kids fat. 

What will make both kids and the Happy Meal happy, again? Why fewer French Fries, of course, what else. Yep, that’s it, less re-fried grease.

The Happy Meal now contains fewer fries. As we all know, French fries are why kids are fat. No, it’s not the filler in the ostensible meat, on a sesame-seed bun, or the think milk shakes.

Nor is it the general lack of exercise or constant snacking and 24/7 screen time. No, it’s the poor little French fries that are to blame. How awful is that?

That’s right those greasy deep fried little spuds all covered in salt. Excuse me, I’ll be right back. Okay, now that I’ve buried the evidence of my forbidden fattening snack, heaven forbid the food police catch me, deep within the garbage we can get back to it.

I have no idea how many fries are in the meal, now. I know someone somewhere knows exactly how many fries and their total caloric value. I’d like to know about the contents of that little paper sleeve; how big a threat are the contents to the well-being of children.

My guess is somewhere between too many and not enough fries, depending on if it is a fresh batch or one that’s been lingering under the heat lamp for 2 two hours. Here’s the problem, I am not a food snob. In fact, I don‘t even play one on television. Well, how could I?

First of all, I live in Wisconsin home of deep fried butter, yes, I know I keep bringing that up, but it is just so wrong. Okay, so maybe a tiny bit of a food snob.

Second and this is just between you and me, I take my kids to various fast food places. This is where the non-food snob part enters to haunt me. I don’t mind taking my kids to the fast food joints.

How can I let my darling, always-well-behaved children eat what I won’t? I am potentially scarring them or fattening them for the rest of their lives. Am I a bad parent or one that needs a 15-minute break, occasionally?

Just call me the wicked witch; yeah, just make sure you use the W sound. I fatten my kids, as if they were Hansel and Gretel. Except I use a kid’s meal from the local fast food joint.

In my defense, I don’t take them often, only when a culinary whip fails to tame the contents of my fridge. You just try making a kid friendly meal, with soy sauce, lettuce and Diet Pepsi. Besides, I like French fries.

Okay, enough of my dismal culinary and shopping skills, I read a blurb in the paper that a group is advocating removing obese children from their parent’s custody. I hope this is of those crazy journalists going too far with something he overheard in a bar. I mean who exactly would judge whether the child is obese or not?

I am afraid I know the answer to that question, based on our love of the reality/game shows.

I picture it as “Obese or Not,” with celebrity judges Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen and Kate Moss. You may insert name of current wafer-thin Hollywood starlet, here. We are not so far from that look at the Biggest Loser and Celebrity Fit club. Apparently, it makes perfect sense to watch someone attempt to lose weight while sitting on the couch eating potato chips and drinking a sugary cola.

By Hollywood, standards the rest of us, especially those in the Midwest states could stand to lose a few pounds. If they were in charge it would be bye-bye French fries and hello Brussels sprouts.

Jennifer Flaten lives where the local delicacy is fried cheese, Wisconsin. She writes about family life, its amusing or not so amusing moments. "At least it's not another article on global warming," she says. Jennifer bakes a mean banana bread and admits an unusual attraction to balloon animals and cup cakes. Busy preparing for the zombie apocalypse, she stills finds time to write "As I See It," her witty, too often true column. "My urge to write," says Jennifer, "is driven by my love of cupcakes, with sprinkles on top. Who wouldn't write for cupcakes, with sprinkles," she wonders.

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