Saturday, February 24, 2007

Essay 1759

Ratting out the news in a MultiCultClassics Monologue…

• Forget trans fats — the problem is rats. TV cameras showed rodents scurrying around in a KFC and Taco Bell in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village (pictured above), putting parent company Yum Brands in a bad position. “Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our customers. This is completely unacceptable and is an absolute violation of our high standards,” said Yum Brands in a statement. KFC recently asked Pope Benedict XVI to lend his personal seal of approval for its fish sandwiches during the Lenten season. Guess they should also ask him to pray for protection from pestilence.

• Wendy’s will close the restaurant that launched the business in 1969. The historic location has failed to generate suitable profits. “This is a very difficult decision, but the truth is we kept it open for sentimental reasons much longer than we should have,” said a company spokesman. Hey, Yum Brands keeps rat-infested restaurants open, so there’s nothing wrong with doing likewise for sentimental motivations.

• Another promotional campaign has exploded in Boston. This time, the culprit is Dr. Pepper. The soft drink manufacturer created a contest for consumers to seek a coin valued at $1 million that may have been buried in the Granary Burying Ground — the final resting place of John Hancock, Paul Revere, Samuel Adams and others. When crowds showed up at the location, city officials closed down the area, fearing contestants would damage stuff in search of the prize. “It absolutely is disrespectful,” said Boston Parks Commissioner Toni Pollak. “It’s an affront to the people who are buried there, our nation’s ancestors.” A Dr. Pepper spokesman said, “We agree with the Park Department’s decision to lock the gates. We wouldn’t do anything to desecrate this cemetery.” It might have been better — and more clever — to create a promotional tie-in between Dr. Pepper and Dr. Kervorkian.

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