11 March, 2006

Filet-O-Fish

Certainly one must read the title of this post and wonder, why would this post be titled that? Well, the answer to that question would be that this post is about the McDonald's sandwich, the Filet-O-Fish. Originally, I had planned to make my next post something about how the Iraq War was going (not well, if you haven't heard) brilliantly titled "We're in Deep Shiite," and perhaps that will still occur, but at this time, the most thought provoking thing I can think of is a McDonald's sandwich.

To begin frankly, the Filet-O-Fish scares me. I have never eaten one nor do I ever plan to eat one, because I value my life. Certainly, I would probably eat one if "my life depended on it" but under very few other circumstances would I ever ingest one of those things. So I've put it out there, I have never eaten one, but I'm going to be writing this post on prejudice and hearsay alone. For those of you unfamiliar with this sandwich, it's main component is a square-shaped, breaded, processed fish patty that is, according to Wikipedia, a conglomerate of Pollock and/or Hoki meat. I have never heard of either of those fish, but I am aware that they are not gourmet sea food and are probably best left off a bun and in the ocean. Additionally, it scares me when meat is shaped into unnatural shapes, such as a square or dinosaurs, like many chicken nuggets are. On top of this thing is a slice of American cheese and tartar sauce. Following the writing of that description, I need to take a moment to vomit.

And, I'm back. One of my greatest gripes with this sandwich lies in McDonald's use of the letter "o" to mean "of" as is commonly seen in the last name of people of Irish ancestry. Seeing as my name is Michael O'Leary, I share something pretty intimate with the repulsive mass known as the Filet-O-Fish. The "o" used at the beginning of Irish last names is a stand in for "of" to indicate the origins of a given family. This "o" appearing at the beginning of Irish last names has saved millions of people the time and energy of writing the "f" that would follow the "o" if the entire "of" were written out, for many centuries. I find the Filet-O-Fish's use of this "o" rather than "of" a crying shame. The time saving "o" is a sign of Irish culture and ingenuity and is quite frankly, sheer exploitation used in the context of this sandwich's name. I truly would prefer an alternative name to this sandwich, such as McFish or FishMac, two names that are in fact used outside of the United States.

Another gripe of this sandwich is the purpose it was either originally conceived for or that it is now purported to serve. This purpose is that it works with the world's religions to meet their beliefs when the rest of McDonald's menu does not. During the Christian season of lent, Catholics are not permitted to consume meat on Fridays. As fish does not fall under the umbrella of "meat" in this case, it may be consumed. Therefore, if a good Catholic happens to stumble into a McDonald's on a Friday between Ash Wednesday and Easter, they have no choice but to eat a Filet-O-Fish. This is a real sly move by McDonald's that, I'm sure you can tell from my tone, I do not approve of. Additionally, Kosher rule and Halal rule do not allow Jews and Muslims respectively to consume many of McDonald's more mainstream offerings, and therefore, this thing is really one of their only options.

I don't know what McDonald's thinks they are doing in offering this sandwich, but they shouldn't be doing it. I'm really confused as to where they got the impression that when the citizens of this world get a Hoki or Pollock craving, they are going to go directly to the nearest McDonald's and quench that craving with a Filet-O-Fish. In conclusion, I think it's safe to assume that this sandwich also causes some rare form of cancer, as almost everything in this world does nowadays and this is another reason I encourage you to join me in my looking-down-upon-this- sandwich-in-shame-of-its existence. Finally, I ask you not to eat this sandwich for it makes me sick just to think of it in its little blue box with those three hyphenated words across the top.