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Old MacDonald had a cheeseburger

We took a road trip this past weekend and stopped for lunch at the place Josephine calls "Old MacDonald's."

She calls it that because she doesn't know any better. And I won't correct her. It's a cultural gaffe I find hilarious and heartwarming.

My kid flunked American Culture 101 and I couldn't be more proud because it means that so far, I've been able to keep the claws of greedy marketers off my children. 

Sort of. 

"It's not Old MacDonald's, Josephine," her big sister chided. "It's McDonald's."

Ok. So, the five-year-old knows the real name. But she doesn't know their chief marketing tool: Ronald McDonald. I showed Esme his picture this morning after I read that 96 percent of U.S. schoolchildren can identify him. The clown ranks second only to Santa Claus, for crying out loud. I've been watching "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution" lately so it shouldn't shock me that a fast-food mascot is nearly as well known as Santa. But it does. It really does. 

Then I got to thinking...

Santa owns the hearts of children everywhere because of what he brings them: toys! My children spent the first 30 minutes in the car after lunch in a delirious state of heavenly bliss because of the toys "Old MacDonald" gave them. Observe.


Old MacDonald Toys from Dana Damico on Vimeo.


Methinks I see claws settling in.

Reader Comments (4)

Kate always called it Old McDonald too! Not anymore though. :-( This video is so sweet.

April 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy

I'll never forget when Ava was two and had no idea about McDonald's...we passed a big McDonald's with a two-story-tall mural of all the marketing characters. She pointed and exclaimed, "Mommy, I want to go THERE! THERE THERE THERE!"

It could have been anything--she had no idea--but the big drawings were enough to make her think that place must be great for kids.

It must work, too. Imagine how many parents each day just say OK and pull in.

April 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLea R

Just what I needed!! A video fix!! Perfect!!

April 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKara Jan

I LOVE McDonald's!!!!! I love it more than Inez and Ekeanor do. When my twins were wee babies, and didn't nap well, I would put them in the car. once they fell asleep I would slink into the drive-thru ( hopefully the line would not be too long) and order a combo meal, always with a sweet Coke from the tap. Then I would drive along the GW Parkway and look at the river (and the road sometimes too). Sometimes it was my only time to just be. I do not think McDonald's is evil, although the Happy Meal is a masterful marketing accomplishment; something I avoided for as long as possible. Now it is mandatory.

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

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