If you're a grown up, like I pretend to be, there is really only one way to eat the food at the McDonalds chain of restaurants: drunk.
Some might not even call it food. And some might say drunk is not enough. But in the spirit of this blog, I will admit that I became drunk recently and I ate at McDonalds and now I am recording it here for the sake of history.
The one thing I will not divulge, however, is the lovely person who joined me on my late night burger binge. At least I will let them retain some of their dignity.
We had been drinking at the Darlo Bar - one of many such recent celebrations that have been held to toast a big change in my life, which I will tell you about next week.
As the night progressed, I urged my dear friend to order some food from the Darlo Bar menu, which is efficiently delivered from two nearby restaurants: S. Thada Thai and The Burger Joint.
But my friend insisted that they had already eaten and so we kept on drinking until last beers were called and we found ourselves out on Darlinghurst Road, just after midnight, with stomachs rumbling.
"French fries!'' I said.
''Must have French fries!"
And so we toddled down Darlinghurst Road to the Kings Cross strip and wobbled into McDonalds - the only place selling French fries that was open at such a time.
The first McDonalds restaurant opened in Illinois, in the United States, way back in 1955, by a chap called Ray Kroc and was immensely successful. Sixteen years later the first franchise opened in Australia at Yagoona, in Sydney's west.
Today there are over 780 stores across Australia, employing around 85,000 people. Worldwide there are more than 30,000 McDonalds in 120 countries.
McDonalds pioneered the fast food franchise system and in 1978 introduced the first drive-through restaurant in Australia, which was at Warrawong, on the state's south coast.
It must have been around that time, or in the 1980s, that the Kings Cross outlet opened on Darlinghurst Road.
The Kings Cross outlet is pretty much open 24 hours, save for a 15-minute period around 4am when the cleaners go in, so it is very popular with late night revellers.
You can complain all you like about McDonalds, but no one is forcing you to eat there. And for many years I didn't; only breaking my 18-year boycott in 2008 when I was stuck in the boonies of NSW with nowhere else to eat.
The menu has not changed much in the past 30 years. French fries taste exactly the same, but a few years back in a token nod to healthy eating, McDonalds introduced burgers that contained less fat and more green stuff.
So you basically line up at the counter, check the light-box menus that drop down from the ceiling and order your food, which generally takes less than two minutes. It's all about speed.
The best thing to do is order one of the meals, which cost about $8 and includes a burger, fries and some ghastly post-mixed soft drink that tastes like sugar-water and is low on fizz. If you try ordering the items separately, without the drink, I think it actually costs more, so just go with the meal.
The food comes in either a brown paper bag or on a tray.
The McDonalds's dining area is pretty much the same in any restaurant you go to around the world. The furniture is screwed into the tiled floor, the tables are laminated and the seats swivel.
There is usually always one staff member wandering around cleaning up people's abandoned French fries and peeling off gherkins that have been pegged at the wall. You can see him in the picture below:
For my drunken binge I ordered a McChicken meal (below). The burger contained a "chicken" patty, lettuce and mayonnaise. A few slices of tomato would have been a nice addition. I ate all my fries, but could not stomach the post-mix Coca-Cola and ended up dragging it home, whereupon it was discovered the next morning sitting on the sink; a sad reminder of the night before.
My friend ordered the McDonalds signature burger, the Big Mac, which has three slices of burger bun, two patties, lettuce and mayonnaise. It was gone in about 60 seconds:
As I opened up my cardboard burger contained I noticed this printed on the inside of the lid:
"Did you know your McChicken Burger is part of a tick approved meal? Simply add a Garden Salad, choose a small orange juice or bottled water and you will be making a Tick approved healthier choice at McDonalds.''
So basically if I didn't eat the fries, my burger and its 18.7 grams of fat would be healthy? I find that idea quite hilarious, especially considering McDonalds pays the Heart Foundation $300,000 each year to use the "Tick".
This week the Heart Foundation also withdrew from the arrangement with McDonalds, amid speculation the $300,000 deal had destroyed the foundation's reputation.
I don't know why McDonalds bothers with the healthy food push, seeing as anyone who has any notion about nutrition would never darken the fast food franchises's doors. Unless of course, they are drunk.
45-47 Darlinghurst Road
Kings Cross NSW 2010
02 9358 4400