Thursday, September 13, 2012

chats: habits and junk-food

There are two truths that are important to know about me.

First, I'm not that great with change. I didn't even realize when this became true, because I've always been a very easy-going person. But with age, it has become very difficult for me to adjust to sudden change.
If I've had it in my head that I'm going to hang out in my PJ's for the evening, maybe cleaning up a little, with Ever After on, with some crafts here and there, then I might have a mini panic attack when my husband comes in and announces he has invited people to come over.
I mean, it's not like I had any real plans. It's not like I don't like our friends. But something in me clicks and says, "No, panic! Panic! PANIC!"
And I'm not sure why.

Second, I really like junk food.
It's bad. I love fast food. Oh, it's so good. I love Top Ramen, McDonald's, Taco Bell, Mac and's quite near a sickness, because all intelligence points to the fact that I will develop obesity, a tumor, a disease, or some kind of staggering disability if I continue to eat these things regularly.
And yet, as my last post talks about, there is a disconnect in modern thinking. In my thinking.

It's like a great scene from How I Met Your Mother.
Two of the main characters, Ted and Marshall, are trying to decide who gets to keep their apartment, once Marshall gets married.

[as they're playing video games]
Marshall: "So...when Lily and I get married. Who's gonna get the apartment?"
Ted: "Uh...that's a tough one. You know who I think could handle a problem like that?"
Marshall: "Who?"
Ted: "Future Ted and Future Marshall."
Marshall: "[grinning] Totally. Let's let those guys handle it."

We always screw ourselves over, by just leaving it up to our future selves to figure out all the problems we've set up for ourselves! Darn you, past Caitlin! What were you thinking!

Anyway. Yesterday, I decided to ask some of my friends if they also had a fast-food related guilty pleasure.
These were my favorite responses:

Becky: "It's a toss up between a filet o fish (extra extra guilty) and Taco Bell nachos grande (scratch the beef)."
I like this response because it's almost spot-on what my own guilty pleasures are. Except, I'm not a vegetarian, so I will never, ever scratch the beef. 
But, true story, and I'm only 43% proud of this, I once ate 2 filet-o-fish's and 2 fries. When I was with Becky and her mom, probably 15 years ago. So we go way back.
And when I say "we", I mean me and the filet-o-fish.

Melissa: "Secret fast food guilty pleasure? Long John Silvers.. it's like I can actually feel all of my arteries being squeezed shut from grease and all of my vital organs failing.. but every few months, it's a must have.."
This cracks me up. Because isn't that the way of it? We hide behind our fast-food splurges. There's something so good about feeling so disgusting. Fast food businesses sell millions of billions of meals every day, week, month, chances are, those friends of yours who you think don't eat fast food, are lying. They're liars. 
Which leads me right to,


Oh, Jim, you speak the truth.

Jon: "Well, a really good friend and I used to love grabbing big macs together... But then he left me to go to Virginia =(" 
Britany: "Jon, he sounds like a jerk."
Jon: "I'll say!"
I just like this because it's about my husband. And it's funny.

Guys, this post didn't come out of nowhere. I have a point to all of this.
My point, is that we had fast food for dinner last night.
You may not know this about me, but my friend Lauren and I used to go out all the time in college.
Our main hot spot was Starbucks...(you can read more about us here) and Taco Bell. Oh, Taco Bell.

But when we wanted to feel really accomplished, we'd go to Arby's.
Everyone knows Arby's is the king of make-yourself-feel-better fast food. It tastes fresher, it's more expensive, and their Chicken Salad Sandwich (or wrap) is absolutely delightful.
Pair that with a black sweetened tea from Starbucks, and I'm in heaven. That was Lauren and I's special outing meal. 

Arby's also offered something truly amazing, once upon a time.

Loooong agoooo....
Mom and I are driving home from Chandler, where I attend high school.
We stop for gas at a Love's gas station, to fill up the car and to get a snack. I've just finished a sport of some kind, so I'm a little hungry.
After we get gas, we drive through Arby's, which is the fast food joint attached to the convenience store of the gas station.
After a few minutes, hot, fresh jalapeno poppers with Bronco Berry dipping sauce are in our hands and filling our bellies with warm, spicy perfection.

Why do I not remember the exact year, or the sport I played? Because we went ALL THE TIME.
And then Arby's took it away. They took the Bronco Berry sauce away, they took the jalapenos away, they took the "pop" out of my life. Mom can attest, we've been bitter ever since. 

Coming back to last night, Dusty and I went to Arby's after work. He surprised me, because like I said, Arby's is only for a truly special occasion. It's a few dollars more than our usual Taco Bell or McDonald's order.
We pull up to the windows, and I don't even need to look. My order is already out of my mouth.
"Chicken Salad Wrap please!"
Then the lady says, "I'm sorry, we no longer serve Chicken Salad."
It echoes through my ears like a broken record, skipping and jostling around my brain until I nearly weep.

"No, panic! Panic! PANIC!!!!"

We may hide in it, we made be shamed by it, but the fast-food guilty pleasures are a part of life. For all of us. You guys know it, I know it. This ruined my week.
Arby's and I are done.
Fool me once (jalapeno poppers), shame on you. Fool me twice (chicken salad), you're the WORST.
We're no longer speaking, I will never go there again. When that jolly red hat floats into my view along the roads, I will shun it like a Biblical-times leper. I will no longer think about it when I get a sweetened black tea from Starbucks, and I will ne'er again disgrace dollar bills by throwing them into their drive-thru window. 

I shame-ate a crap load of Taco Bell (which is conveniently in the same parking lot) and didn't even go for my scheduled run. 

Arby's is dead to me.

Chicken Salad-less,


  1. They used to have a "Martha's Vineyard" salad with craisins in it that was delicious, light, and healthy. This too, went away and I've never been back. Solidarity, sister!