I have already admitted on here that I love McDonald’s. I understand just how much is wrong with McDonald’s. I fancy myself a pretty health conscious person, so this McD’s thing gets filed in my ‘contradictory feelings’ folder. It’s like my kid self just loves that place so much, but my adult self knows better, but that childlike spark ignites everytime I see the golden arches. It will not be extinguished. I can trace this love back to my third birthday party. Held at the McDonald’s in the Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit. I remember it well. This picture was taken there.
You can see an old school McD’s cup on the table behind me. My cake had a sugar Ronald McDonald on it and I saved him for as long as I could. Like he was a doll. Or my friend. I have a vivid memory of looking at that thing in the car ride on the way home from the party. Anyway, I think the love started in November of 1979. I also think that in the years to come McDonald’s was something that crossed the cultural lines that I couldn’t really understand, but couldn’t help perceiving. Black people and White people enjoyed McDonald’s. I would go there with my mom and with my dad long after they stopped going anywhere together. I have fond memories of both grandmothers taking me there. McDonald’s was dependable. Happy Meals made me happy. McDonald’s provided common ground is what I think I’m trying to say.
While preparing for this blog post I came across this great article on retrojunk.com http://www.retrojunk.com/details_articles/4432/. So many memories invoked by the pictures. They just don’t make playlands like they used to. I’d forgotten how elaborate they could be. Here are a few of my fav pics from retrojunk.
You’ll also find the history of Grimace in there. I love Grimace.