Guess where I snatched the title.
Since funds were running low I took a bus plying the route to Alabang from Makati yesterday afternoon. As usual nothing so glaring ever happened during the 30-minute drive except that my seatmate who happened to be a girl in her early twenties probably, kept on munching French fries swimming in deep vats of ketchup, all from McDonald’s. She had this peculiar way of eating the fries that aroused my curiosity: she selected the slender potato strips almost dripping with ketchup afterwards she licked the red condiment first, dipped it into the septic ketchup tank again, and finally devoured the fries bit by bit. Every after two or three strands of fries she would ceremoniously lick and suck her fingers dry from any residue left incurred from the bizarre ritual. Now I am all for freedom of expression – you want to eat the way you feel it deems comfortable, fine by me. You want to sup up lychee? Mayonnaise? Fine, just don’t give me an offer.
I prefer eating at Jollibee than at McDonald’s. Why? Because I am a political being. We are highly political beings. The mere fact that we single out a preference from an array of options proves the validity of the preceding statements. Blame the wise ancients for introducing the concepts, but now at least we can see the practical applications of seemingly trivial but highly intellectual ideologies. Or to simply put it, which do you prefer, a whopping sum of money to the tune of US$1B or to have steaming hot sex with a celebrity you salivate after? If you were a politician or an aspiring one, you’d probably choose the second option for reasons too obvious to contemplate. If you were not a politician but chose sex over money nonetheless, it only proves that people are getting a lot giddier and libidinous these days.
Where was I? Yes, McDonald’s and Jollibee. Although I grew up with a McDonald’s outlet just a few blocks away from our place (my family used to live near Ayala Alabang), I couldn’t say that I developed a sense of antiquarian history with it. Well, we ate there during the weekends but the word fun wasn’t inscribed. It wasn’t so much with the ambience or whatsoever, but what sets the two fast food restaurants apart is the very merchandise they sell, food. My palate can easily distinguish what is bland from delectable. We all know that McDonald’s originated from the US (and there is this phenomenon called McDonaldization which I will not expound for I fear another digression), and I heard somewhere that most Americans prefer something that tastes a little less than bland, if not bland at all. On the other hand, Jollibee, being a truly Filipino innovation though the owner is half Chinese, captures the taste of Pinoys so exquisitely I doubt if there were people who reportedly avoid eating out in the restaurant. Like McDonald’s, Jollibee has now several branches outside the country, and I wouldn’t be surprised if one day another wave of phenomenal hoo-ha materializes in the name of Jollibeezation.
It occurred to me that I did not directly answer why I prefer Jollibee to McDonald’s. The justification to that lies in the first few paragraphs of this post. French fries. Jollibee serves the most scrumptious, most enthralling, most superior French fries than any other restaurant I’ve been to. Even before the Crispy variety came out. There is something in those fries, something inexplicable beyond human reason that drags me back to the counter and triggers the urge to order another large serving. I just don’t know, but out of all the fries my teeth had sank into, Jollibee is simply the best pick. And I’m definitely not paid to express these laudable statements for the company.
If you want excessive amounts of iodine try McDonald’s French fries. Theirs is sseeewww briny it’s like eating salt altogether, and I did not pay to have me brought to an internist afterwards. There’s this dinky McDonald’s branch almost beside Metropolis Star in Alabang (Montillano, if I’m not mistaken with the branch’s name) that serves I think the saltiest French fries ever. Sometime a couple of years ago I ate breakfast there with a friend. We ordered large-sized fries, just for the heck of it. When the said comestible materialized we found it very difficult to imagine that those were julienned fried potatoes. The tasting part came, but was preempted by the sight of gushing torrents of iodized salt falling off the holes on the bottom of the carton box. If we so much as to finish eating the fries we might have been rushed to the Asian Hospital which was only a few meters away. The fries ended up in the trash bin.
On a seemingly related literature, I tried the fries served at Kenny Rogers. At first it looked tempting, but as I clamped my teeth into one, I figured it would be better for KR to stick with their specialty. Experimentation is good, it brings out lots of potentials, but potatoes are supposed to taste like potatoes, and not like pieces of corrugated cardboard.