< Upheaval: Fools like us

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Fools like us

If you are in advertising, keep it up, because there will always be fools out there. Fools like me. Fools who believe that what-you-see-is-better-than-what-you-already-have.

Ahem. For instance...

I love fruit. A lot. I would rather eat fruit than pizza, or ice cream, or cookies. I would rather have fruit than (*gasp*) a margarita. I would rather have fruit than most things. So, you see, I love it.

When McDonald's started HEAVILY advertising their Fruit and Walnut salad, I thought, "That is a neat idea. Good thing fast food is jumping on the fruit band-wagon." The advertisements continued. In force. Apparently, most other people in the world were enjoying their Fruit and Walnut salads, but, because I don't do fast food very often at all, I was not among them.

Last night was a late one for Daniel and me. We went to a friend's birthday party, and we were rather late getting home. We spun through the McDonald's drive through and got a couple of burgers and, finally, a Fruit and Walnut salad for the rather exorbitant price of $2.99.

Now, in case you have been blind to the advertising craze, a Fruit and Walnut salad consists of red and green apple slices, approximately 9 purple grapes, two tablespoons of low-fat flavorless yogurt dipping sauce, and a packet of candied walnuts.

We got our food home, and I eagerly opened my salad. I had a couple of slices of apple, dutifully dipping it in the sauce, and sticking a couple of walnuts on top for good measure. Hmmm... this was sort of a letdown. Could I not have made this at home? My miserly self took over, and I lost my appetite, cursing the day I spent $2.99 on this salad. I packed it up and stuck it in the refrigerator, thinking, "Maybe I can eat it tomorrow."

So this morning, I got up and, when searching for breakfast, was faced once again with this salad. I pulled it out of the refrigerator and was absolutely appalled to see that the apple slices still looked fresh, without a hint of browning.

Being such a fruit lover, I am familiar with ways to keep apple slices fresh - lemon juice, for one. But these didn't smell or taste like anything other than apples. But the texture was weird. And the grapes were very rubbery. And the walnuts... okay, the walnuts were still good.

So, not only did I pay $2.99 for this salad that probably cost about 57 cents to make, but in the name of healthy choices, I ingested God-Only-Knows what kinds of preservatives in this food! Yech!

If this post saves one person from making this choice, I will feel that my mission is accomplished.

Now, has anyone tried those fruit bowls at Wendy's yet?


Anonymous Jami said...

Ahhh, I was wondering about those lovely looking fruit salads. Now I can definitely cross that off my list of wanting to try! They make it look sooo good, but knowing McDonalds, I figured it wouldn't be THAT GOOD!

P.S. I'm pregnant! Tell Daniel for Jeremy and I!!!!!!!

8:17 AM  
Blogger Amanda said...

No, no fruit bowls at Wendy's, HOWEVER, the fruit bowls at Chic-Fil-A are delicious!

8:44 AM  
Blogger Jennboree said...

So you weren't lovin' it?

Oh, I hated the fruit bowl at Chic-Fil-A. Rubbery grapes and those freakishly un-browned apples and for some reason just apple skins included in the batch. BLEAH

Congrats on the pregnancy, Jami! :) You are embarking on a wonderful life-changing journey!

8:48 AM  
Blogger Vanessa said...

Eww..so glad you told us that, Amanda. I'll save my 2.99 and go buy some "real" fruit at Kroger. With all those preservatives, you'd probably be better off just gettin' a freakin' Quarter Pounder!

9:59 AM  
Blogger Melinda said...

So the apples never turned!?!?! Gross! I had an apple this morning and while I was eating it, it started to turn colors! But thanks for the warning!!! :)

Haven't tried the Wendy's bowl, but my supervisior has, and she said that it was too small to mean anything important. :)

10:37 AM  
Blogger Amanda Sue said...

jami already IS a mama! this makes two. :) congratulations and i can't wait to tell daniel!

12:21 PM  
Blogger MsThang said...

Luckily I am impervious to the evil marketing schemes here in Italy. No McDonalds, no Taco Bell, no Wendys. All we have is a Burger King and a Subway, which doesn't interest me much.

But thanks for the head up on the preservative fruit. I will remember that when I am back in the states for a visit later this year :)

4:04 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

Thanks for the information. I was like you thinking it might actually be decent. Their fruit parfaits used to be alright with the yogurt and granola and berries. I don't know if they still have those and you could get the small ones for $1! But the walnut & fruit salad did look good, but now I know not to try it! :)

4:27 PM  
Blogger Ben said...


AAhhhh... Amanda Sue... I love the fact that you are shameless about falling prey to marketing schemes... I am SO your best friend when it comes to marketing ploys...

If you were in my office right now... you would have heard a verbal chuckle at your last line.

Only fools like us would get that joke. ;)

5:55 PM  
Blogger quycksilver said...

I don't do fast food very often either, well, maybe more often than you Amanda Sue, but not as often as I used to, but I go into it knowing full well that there is no pretense of health here, I'm trying to reread Fast Food Nation in order to turn myself off from the evils of this empire--from the food to employment procedures to marketing strategies, fast food is bad news, and yet I can't help but crave a cheeseburger every once in a while . . .

1:44 PM  
Blogger jes said...

amanda, mission accomplished. i have been considering trying one, and now you have prevented me from doing so.

i owe you so much in life. thank you. :)

6:36 PM  

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