Howl (For Mayor McCheese) by Adam Selzer

Part I:

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by Grimace.

Starving, hysterical, purple, it dragged itself down into the
town from Mcdonaldland like a thief who'd come to steal the

Looking like a bloated Zorro in the hat and mask he had begged borrowed
stolen from the Hamburglar, he crept into our town gurgling rhapsodic jazz, making noises like a
biker being violated under the streetlights in the great field
of stars

And all of the homemakers shareholders and sidewalk sliders crept out
of their Little Boxes and came out into the morning, drawn like
lemmings into the old Rockwellian town square.

Eyes ablaze like sparkling diamonds, crushing the flowers that had been
planted by the Ladies' Auxillary last year, its mouth a mass of
glowing gelatin framed by an evil grin.

Was this the face that had launched a thousand happy-meals? That burned
the topless towers of Illyium on a sesame seed bun? The smiling
visage that had poured off of every television set for thirty
numb humdrum years?

"Bring me a Shamrock Shake!" he boomed, in a basso voice that belonged
to the thunder, as he laughed like the river below the Brooklyn
Bridge and wickedly demanded that we "supersize it."

But April had already sprung forth with all of it's false hopes, March
had withered like a rose at the gates of hell, and where were
the snows of last year? ou sont les ou sont les neiges...ou sont....

They were gone, gone into the sweet grandfather goodnight, and with
them the last of the seasonal Shamrock Shakes.

Our mayor stepped bravely forth to tell the beast that they were gone,
and the Grimace grabbed his velvet lapels and thrust him forth
toward the volcano of his red mouth screaming.

And his head vanished between the great teeth, and then his arms and
torso, and all at once his screams were extinguished like the
weeping flame of a candle in the sweet December rain until all that
was left was a purple bourgeous blur dripping red

And in a sudden blinding flash we all knew the answer to a question we
hadn't even thought to ask. We knew why we hadn't seen Mayor
McCheese in years.

And the Grimace wasn't finished yet, it moved forward and grabbed
Mrs Carlson the kindegarten teacher in her nightgown and devoured
her, too.

And he then devoured the old lamplighter of long long ago, laughing as the
blood poured from his mouth like ketchup from a stomped-on neglected foil
packet. And then the minister, and Mr. Stiches and Mr. Thomas crying holy,
holy to the Burger King for help.

And somewhere in the back the angel-headed hipster pinkos cried "we
told you this would happen! We told you so! We told you!" and
the streets flowed red with their blood, too, and now the revolution
wouldn't be coming after all or maybe this was it.

And the vegetarians laughed too, laughed even as they were thrust into
the purple jaws, laughed even though there was no meat in the
Grimace, at least as far as any of the screaming victims could tell.

They bled, they bled, they bled.


Howl! Howl! Howl howl howl robble robble robble. It ate up their brains
and imagination for want of a Shamrock Shake!

Mcdonalds! where he graced the face of a thousand cookie boxes.

Mcdonalds! Solitude! Capitalism! Extra-Value Meals!
Mcdonalds the Cheap! Mcdonalds the plentiful! Mcdonalds the clean, oh what
can it mean that Mcdonalds is clean?

Mcdonalds! where the mourners gathered in the wake of the Grimace,
trying to call mayday mayday to Ronald, who had packed off and
gone to India!

Mcdonalds! where the $5.15 an hour nonunion heros dug in the back for
the last surviving package of Shamrock Shake mix!

Mcdonalds! whose stock fell several points as the shareholders were

Mcdonalds was your kind of place! They served you rattlesnakes!
And stole your underwear the next time that you went there!

McDonalds, I've given you all and now I'm nothing. Mcdonalds,
$4.49 cents for the value mean, $2.99 sandwich-only.

Mcdonalds! where Grimace was arrested at high noon, broke the
handcuffs, and slithered off laughing on his way to your town!

Mcdonalds! where the plaque on the statue in the playland read
"My name is Ronald Mcdonal, King of Kings
See my food, ye hungry, and despair!"
And despair
and despair


Mayor McCheese, I'm with you in Mcdonaldland.

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland, where you counted the money you
made off of the Muppet Babies Happy Meal

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland
where the battered corpse of Captain Crook lies tangeld in
the arms of the corpse of the Professor, and the Early Bird flies
vulgar vulture circles above

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland
where the hamburgers are sliced to the thickness and glimmer
of a Roosevelt dime.

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland
Where Mcdonalds Pizza is more than just something I was once
tried when I was in Minneapolis or was it Cedar Rapids?

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland
Where Officer Big Mack and the Hamburglar finally sit together
for Lox and Bagels on Sunday morning, and the Fry Guys also

I'm with you in Mcdonaldland
where still you forge the yellow signs, the glowing Capital M's,
the beacons that signify the presence of the Quarter Pounder
with some Cheese
the glowing idols that light the highways of the Plutonian

24 March 2001

1 comment:

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