I call McDonald's 'McCrappage' for a reason. I mean: Is there any reason I need to explain myself, people?
No ... I didn't think so.
Still, I'll admit to getting the occasional hankering for a Big Mac. Thankfully, those times are few and far between.
But, a week ago, I did something I wouldn't normally do (I hope you're sitting down): I ventured into a McDonald's and ordered a McRib sandwich.
Truth be told, it was an experiment more than anything else.
The way I figured it, I'd been working my ass off all day and, being McCrappage was the closest thing around, the remainder of the day's physical work would surely burn off any ill effects some McMysteryMeat on a bun might conjure up.
Yes, I've heard the wild tales involving people venturing hundreds of miles to satisfy their McRib cravings when they discover a McDonald's hours away is running the rare promotion. I've read of a few of these folks 'stocking up' on their needed BBQ sauce drowned fix, purchasing dozens at a time. (What in the world do they do with them? Eat them all at one sitting? Munch them continually over the course of days? Freeze'em for later consumption?) I've witnessed the frenzied looks of some overcome by the mere mention of a McRib. Sure, some of these stories are probably true, some fact-based ... and some so fantastical as to be fabricated, a result of hearing a 15-second radio spot for their beloved meal.
So, I decided to check out this sandwich for myself.
Sitting down with my purchase in a crowded Saturday McDonald's, I opened the container and discovered my order was misconstructed to begin with; I requested extra pickles and no onion. I got just the opposite - tons of onion, nary a pickle. (The beginning of my experience wasn't looking on the bright side from the get-go.)
Correcting the mistake in a (surprisingly) short amount of time, I sat down again, looked at the sandwich once more and took it all in: Oozing barbeque sauce dribbled down the sides of the sandwich. I wondered why so much sauce was necessary. Could this have been the work of an over-zealous employee? Or was this how it was supposed to look?
I took a deep breath and dove in. Savoring the flavor (I use the term loosely), I tried to come up with an appropriate adjective or two for the experience .... and couldn't.
You see, the taste I was met with was rather ... underwhelming. There was a hint of porky flavor to the sandwich, but it was overpowered by the abundance of sauce it was slathered in. 'Meh' was the best thing I could come up with. No taste explosion, not even that good, really ... but not in the least bit bad or repulsive, as some people have proffered.
I continued eating. I was hungry, after all. I needed fuel for the remainder of the day. I kept chewing, taking yet another bite, looking for something - anything - that hinted at what others found so enticing about a McRib. For the life of me, I just couldn't come up with a single idea as to its popularity.
Will I order one again? No. There's just nothing at all exciting about it, nothing that left me with an impression. Surely, nothing that would make me order another one down the line.
So, I'm confused: What's all the hoopla about? Why do so many people get whipped into a frothy herd mentality frenzy over this completely unremarkable fast food McBlandwich?
I. Don't. Know.