McMe-Time With Fries

They made me do it.

I am writing this blog post on my phone, in my parked car, having just participated in one of the most salacious, shameful activities in my mom-repetoire, so embarrassing that I feel compelled to immediately share with the world. It involves… sleeping children. And… fast food.

But before I dive in, let me just provide some context– after an exciting morning of having a cavity filled (honestly, the most restful moment of the day), I spent an hour getting the kids ready to go to the doctor. This had me a little anxious already; last time we went to the doctor’s Harper distinguished herself by shouting,  “I’m not listening to you! I’m going to escape!” and running out of the room. This morning she is being especially contrary, vetoing the sweater I offer, turning down the suggested boots with disgust, really wanting Special Baby to go in the car seat instead of Ollie. (How do you argue with something like that?) Getting downstairs takes cajoling, getting across the street to where the car is parked takes threats, by the time I’m trying to get her in the car seat she’s kicking at my face (“I want to do everything all by myself on my own!”) while Ollie watches the show, and I’m yelling at her there on the avenue for all to see. “Stop kicking me!” I add as I shut the door, just in case any disapproving eavesdropper needs to know why I’m spewing venom at a sweet-faced little blonde clutching her dolly.

So. Then, the doctor’s office, where Harper repeats her trickery despite not being the one being examined at all, pushing at the doctor’s chair experimentally and whispering, “No doctor for me OR Ollie.” One shot and one screaming baby later, we are headed home. “I’m going to be a doctor when I grow up!” Harper announces as we get back in the car.

Now, we don’t drive often. This used to be because, hello, we live in New York City which is where people live when they are superior beings who walk places and frequent local shops. Now I admit, it’s mostly because finding parking in our neighborhood is an exercise in futility, so that my outings are all coordinated with alternate side parking, when the streets miraculously clear for the street sweepers, only to have every spot filled the instant it’s legal again. So driving is a little bit of a novelty for the kids, and for me, and so I am unused to this weird phenomenon of the kids both falling asleep in their car seats on our way back from anywhere.

Car naps used to disturb me because I used to care about “junk sleep” and “nap schedules.” Then I had another baby. Now I take what I can get. And when both kids are asleep at the same time, it’s like a spa vacation. In my car. So you know what I do?

I drive to McDonalds. I do. And I go through the drive-through. I do! McDonalds is so evil and disgusting! I, who used to be a vegan who lectured people on how supporting companies like McDonalds was destroying the earth and making angels cry! And… “Ah, can I get an iced coffee? And, like, a grilled chicken sandwich? Do you have something like that? A grilled chicken sandwich?”

“A McChicken?”

“Um, is that grilled?” I hear how ridiculous this sounds and correct myself, “Yes, please.” (It is not. It is a big chicken finger covered in greenish ribbons imitating lettuce and something like mayonnaise.) (It is DELICIOUS.) “Is the chicken organic?” I’m kidding, I don’t ask that. But I do think it. Oh, and can I just say that the sandwich, coffee, and fruit thingy that I get all cost $5? Do people know about this? That’s amazing!

And then, there I am, parked on a tree-lined Park Slope street, my kids snoozing away in neck-kinking slumps, sipping a McDonalds iced coffee (the medium is large enough to kill a horse — what is wrong with this country?! — oh, and delicious), and you know what? It’s the second-most relaxing moment of my day. After having my cavity filled.

PS Read more about how deeply, embarrassingly imperfect of a mother I am over at an even-more public forum here!

13 responses to “McMe-Time With Fries

  1. When I was pregnant with number two, for about three months I craved fish sandwiches from McDonald’s. This is how I know there is one in Prospect Lefferts, on a sunny corner, across from Prospect Park. That one might be closer to you than the one in the slope…no judgements here!

    And, now living in a quasi-city, I am getting the full learning experience that comes with driving two little ones around all day. I think there is a niche market for some healthier fast options– around here, the only alternative to fast food in drive through territory is coffee. Nice, but not exactly lunch. ; )

  2. Oh, and I suppose you know about the one in Atlantic Center?

    Believe it or not, my kids don’t eat this stuff. Dave doesn’t even eat this stuff. It’s just me, sometimes.

  3. Yeah, I remember the vegan lectures. And trying to reason with a 2 year old. It’s all part of it.

  4. just so you know, the one in prospect lefferts garden does not have a drive-thru. however, there is a bus that goes directly from your new place to the mcdonald’s.

    • This is all good info. But really what I need to know is if there is a taco bell or dunkin donuts with drive-thru capabilities. Come on, Brooklyn, help me out!

      • there is a wendy’s with a drive thru at flatbush and empire. plus, you can park in the parking lot and look at the botanic gardens which is educational. i think the dunkin donuts next door has a parking lot but no drive-thru. maybe they would run it out to your car?

  5. My kids only slept in the car and both needed naps forever. The older one had to sleep whether he liked it or not, just so I could get a few minutes alone in the car. I would often drive 40mins just to get them to sleep. But I too loved my drive throughs at McD’s! You have to make sure they are really asleep so the microphone shouting and the stopping of the car on and off doesn’t wake them, lol. Bring a good magazine or book or the morning paper in the car, so you can tilt the seat back and actually read just like you could before they were born.. or forget the coffee and the reading and just sort of medidate/zone out. I used to park in the parking lot of a quiet park!

  6. I just stumbled upon your blog randomly just now after doing a search for vintage children’s books. You’re hilarious! (do you know that? you know that… right?) Thanks for making me laugh, fellow brooklyn mom. By the way, I have done every single thing that you just described here. It’s like looking into a virtual mirror.

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