Thursday, November 27, 2008

Bathroom Monologue: Dig In

“I am so tired of that apt criticism. Yes, this Applebee’s is like all of the others. The hamburger is prepared the same way with the same patented and publicly disclosed secret sauce. The calorie content of every platter is the same in Texas and Maine. The employees here wash their hands as often as they do in Alaska – if there is an Applebee’s in Alaska. From Seattle, Washington to Washington, D.C., we’re all mandated to have crazy crap on the walls, so that while each array is unique, they all feel the same. The building feels almost identical to Chili’s, which feels almost identical to Friendly’s. And for some reason you feel the right to condemn us, as though homogeneity was our problem. The problem lies in a society so twisted and uncomforting that when people don’t want to cook for themselves, when they decide they want a night away from their homes and normal lives, they go to a franchise that they’re sure will be just like every other one they’ve ever visited. How mean-spirited, how rude and insensitive, how untrustworthy must the rest of the world be if you look to letting strangers serve you food for familiarity? With all the delicacies and rare cuisines available, dinner is where you come not to be challenged? Then you must come from a sick world. But if my chicken tenders will heal you, then let me lay my hands on your plastic. We take Discover.”

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