Z: Here’s my favorite piece of election trivia from last week: the San Francisco Board of Supervisors banned Happy Meals on the same day that 62 percent of San Franciscans voted yes on Proposition 19.
She: You mean …?
Z: Yep. They shot themselves in the foot. What are all of those stoned people going to do when they get the munchies?
She: I was thinking of a different kind of irony, but I suppose that works, too.
Z: No, no, I’m pretty sure that the only ironic thing about this is that there are going to be a lot of potheads curled up in McDonald’s ball pits, crying because there are no Megamind figurines with their French fries.
She: I was looking more at the hypocrisy angle.
Z: What could possibly be hypocritical about taking toys away from children because they encourage bad eating habits, while simultaneously approving pot smoking?
Z: Aside from that?
She: Don’t get me wrong, I understand the impulse. The backseat of my car was a graveyard of Happy Meal toys for five years straight. It wouldn’t surprise me if it had nothing to do with a concern for obesity or nutrition, and a few of those supervisors just wanted clean cars again.
Z: In that case, they should have outlawed goodie bags at kids’ parties as well.
She: That’s a cause I would march for. But getting rid of toys with Happy Meals? Seems like No. 734 on a list of things that still aren’t that important.
Z: I’m pretty sure they passed the law solely to make themselves look good. “Vote for Bob. I banned toys!”
She: Kind of makes me miss the good old days when the health police confined themselves to whining and nagging us about everything we enjoy.
Z: Common sense is not enough. Now they’ve got the law on their side.
She: I think Koss learned some important lessons from all those cheap toys.
Z: Like how they’re not really any fun?
She: Unless they were slightly dangerous or guaranteed to annoy other people. If you could bounce it or roll it into someone else’s food, or if it made loud noises, then it was a winner.
Z: He also liked anything made out of lead.
She: Otherwise, he tended to leave the toys on the table for another kid, which I liked to see him do.
Z: I bet you wouldn’t have seen that kind of generosity if Prop. 19 had passed.
She: It’s true, he was not one to bogart his toys. He also learned a little commerce, because if it was a set of toys he actually liked, then he would trade with other kids.
Z: Wow. Learning about capitalism at a McDonald’s. Now that is ironic.
She: Not so much. Closer to irony is the fact that the same week San Francisco tried to nanny-state McDonald’s, they (coincidence?) brought back the McRib. Toy not included with purchase.
Z: What toy could you possibly serve up with a McRib sandwich?
She: The McBlood pressure monitor.
Z: If Prop. 19 had passed, then they could have given away the McBong.
She: That’s a vicious circle. Every time you get a McRib with a free McBong, you just get hungry for more McRibs.
Z: Now that’s a lesson in capitalism.
She: Yes, dear.
— Share your Happy Meal thoughts with She and Z by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.