Friday, 24 April 2015
I was in one of the McDonalds in Laval the other day. Choosing quickly from the illuminated list of options above the counter I marched up and announced my choice. I was politely invited to go and place my order at one of the automatic machines installed for this purpose. I don't know about you, but although I can see the cost-saving logic behind minimising the number of staff employed in a fast food emporium, my emotional reaction is similar to what I would get if I had been politely told to sod off.
Laval boasts a KFC and at least two McDonalds, so if I'm up for fast food, and I'm in Laval, I normally make a choice between the two. In my view, there's not a lot between them. Chicken and beef are equally acceptable proteins; I prefer the McDonalds chips but KFC give you unlimited drinks.
I saw that there were quite a few chicken options to be had in this McDonalds, and chose one. I didn't like it much, but there you go, you live and learn. I wonder if they're trying to fight competition by offering both beef and chicken, combatting the idea that you go to the other place for chicken if that's what you want. Assuming that they can find a way to prepare chicken so I like it, then the choice for me will be determined between the quality of the chips and the availability of unlimited drinks.
With this in mind, I note that the idea is being floated by French politicians to ban the sale of unlimited refill drinks, in an effort to "combat obesity". Interesting. The reaction of the populace seems to be either "Haven't they got better things to do with their time", usually followed by a spirited description of better things they could be doing, or "Why can't they just eff off and leave us alone".
I can't find anything that tells me that low-calorie or sugar-free drinks would be excluded from this ban, which I find strange if the intention is to "combat obesity". Nor, for that matter, are "all you can eat" buffet meals, such as you often find in Chinese restaurants, under attack. Is it cynical of me to wonder if I'm not seeing the results of some deft political lobbying on the part of my favourite burger chain?