BD’s Mongolian Barbecue is kind of fascinating. It’s like a salad bar in that you get to choose a combination of ingredients, but there isn’t necessarily a theme; it’s meat, vegetables, and pseudo-Asian sauces that are then cooked on an intimidatingly-large grill. Inevitably, every dish ends up tasting vaguely brown. I’ve never had a great meal there, but no dish I’ve “created” has disappointed me. I guess an overload of salt makes any combination of meats edible.
Anyways, because every dish ends up tasting the same, I was wondering how many regrettable decisions are made edible by BD’s reliance on the sodium-enriched tip of the food pyramid. This must give people confidence that any combination of food is safe, and that any food presented at BD’s is a good idea.
The logical end to this is that anything presented in a BD’s serving line must be food!
Let’s say you started at the beginning of the line. Grab a bowl, and the first station is meats. Pile on beef, some chicken, and maybe duck if you’re feeling fancy. This acclimates you to putting food in bowls. Up next are vegetables; onions, carrots, bean sprouts, green pepper, something crunchy.
Then things become unfamiliar; next to the imitation krab meat are live geoducks. At the end of the vegetable line is a bin of grass clippings. A mountain of peeps awaits you next to the tray of candy cigarettes, followed by a picked-over tray of teddy bear stuffing. The container labeled “McDonald’s Play-Doh Playset” has been long emptied. By the end, you’re piling Legos onto your creation, wondering if the soy sauce will complement a dollop of Vaseline and the recommended cayenne asbestos seasoning.
Patrons will peer at the curious flames rising from the grill as the heat eliminates most of the papier mache and fake Christmas tree branches from their dish. A father will shrug when his son asks for a bowl of fried tulips with de-glued carpet samples. “I didn’t think you could eat that,” he will muse, “but BD’s made it and he liked it, so it must be good. At least he’s eating vegetables!”
Where would people stop? Could a restaurant brainwash the populace writ large? Did I just stumble onto the next great propaganda machine?