French fries causing all sorts of drama

This past week has seen an unusual amount of french fry-related incidents resulting in arrest. Perhaps people are just getting a bit tense under the pressure of meeting (or not meeting) new year’s resolutions?

* Thursday evening at a Florida McDonald’s, 75-year-old grandmother Jean Merola was arrested for disorderly conduct following an altercation with a police officer. Merola was waiting for her drive-through order to be completed when the police officer attempted to get Merola to move her car from allegedly blocking traffic. She was released from the jail after 90 minutes, and an apology has been issued to her by the Clearwater mayor.

* In Jacksonville, Fl., 31-year-old David Spillers caused $75,000 worth of damage to the neighborhood McDonald’s when he rammed his car into the restaurant, including sitting and children’s play areas, after receiving an incorrect order — missing two bags of fries — earlier in the day. He faces charges of felony criminal mischief and reckless driving.

* A man was stabbed in the back by another customer at a Serra Mesa, Ca., McDonald’s when he asked the restaurant’s managers to remove two potty-mouthed and aggressive teens that were disrupting lunch with his five-year-old daughter. The man has survived the wound and the assailant was found and arrested shortly after the incident.

At any rate, it would probably be a good idea to stay away from McDonald’s for a while, to avoid being arrested or shanked.

Arrest and stab wound-free.  She probably doesn’t eat much McDonald’s.

In other corporate conglomeration-related news, Heidi Klum was announced today as the face of the Diet Coke Red Dress Program, a new campaign partnering Diet Coke and the Heart of Truth in building awareness of heart disease among women. Klum will don a purty red dress to the Academy Awards presentation in February, with supporters of the campaign later being given the chance to later win the dress.

This partnership seems a little ironic to me at the moment, given the recent research findings that consumption of caffeinated beverages (such as Diet Coke) makes women particularly vulnerable to miscarriages. Hmmm.

On this cold, snowy day, I find myself craving a Diet Coke (and perhaps even a cheeseburger Happy Meal) on the eve of the beginning of my final semester of classes at UW. Twelve credits away from “freedom”, it is bittersweet. As much as I am looking forward to the prospect of financial freedom from more reliable employment and breaking into what I truly want to “do with my life,” the bubble of Madison has never felt more like a comfortable home. It is true, a large part of my heart will always remain in Madison, and particularly with those whom I have met here. Here’s to making this semester count.

And I leave you with an absolutely infectious track from French singer Julie Budet, who performs under the stage name of Yelle. Enjoy!

Download: Yelle ‘Ce Jeu’