Stan mad about Happy Meals

OK, mommies. What do you say when your son seals his lips and doesn’t want to eat? You play “Open the tunnel and here comes the choo-choo.” Right?

After he spits it back all over your new blouse you attempt to reason with the little guy by telling him that children in China are starving. Then, after you come to the realization that he’s not impressed with the situation in Asia you hold up a toy and … Waddya know? He is now encouraged by a new plaything. He eats. We now know that on every level of childhood, bribery works. It must have worked on advertising man Richard Brams, who pitched lunch and a toy to McDonald’s way back in the ’70s. The guys in the tower upstairs liked the idea and the Happy Meal was born.

Everybody knows that the burger and fries at fast-food eateries are not as healthy as carrots and apples, but they do taste so much better. The food watchdog group, The Center for Science in the Public Interest, known to many as the “Food Police,” tells us that this marketing strategy is “… pernicious, wrong and illegal…” They want it stopped or else.

Or else what?

To make them stop the CSPI is taking Ronald McDonald to court.

The big question asked of mommies at nursery schools, pre-k groups and playgrounds all over America is, “Should McDonald’s omit the toys from the special menu for toddlers?”

While I do agree that these food choices are not the healthiest and that they probably do contribute to the problem of child obesity, the major focus should not be in the direction of McDonald’s. Let’s look at the decisions made by the parents.

Youngsters do not drive themselves to the Golden Arches.

Obviously, as measured by the success, parents are pleased with this type of marketing. Those that are not should learn the simple one word response — “NO!” It’s simply a matter of parenting. They can and should add, “I’m the mother, you’re the kid. Keep crying and I’ll give you something to cry about.”


And while we’re talking about food, summer fruits are here. They’re healthier than potato chips and the prices are not bad. There is one thing that is bugging me. Who in this world decided to put those little numbered gummy stickers on every piece we consume? How many of those bits of paper have found their way in between your teeth?


Next time you’re at the post office make your purchase of stamps commemoratives. They are attractive, educational, the prices are the same and they serve the exact same purpose. You just might make a young philatelist at the other end happy.

By the way, I never understood this: How does my finishing all of the broccoli on my plate help that hungry kid in Beijing?

I am [email protected] pleading — please do not take the “Happy” out of the Happy Meals.

More from Around New York