Mayor McCheese – The Greatest Politician, Ever.Posted: June 21, 2010
I took an extra day off recently. I spent the day running a few errands. This gave me a chance to grab some lunch with the Omawari-son.
While we were picking at some fried okra and waiting for our barbecue, we were talking about some sort of foolishness that led to me mentioning Mayor McCheese. My son laughed and we batted the name back and forth, then he started talking about what Mayor McCheese might be made of. He described some sort of grilled cheese sandwich with feet.
My son reveals that he was raised by wolves.
I said Mayor McCheese’s head was a cheeseburger. Omawari-son laughed and said, “yeah that would look funny but it’s not really practical”. At that moment, it hit me. He had no idea who we were talking about. I confronted him with this. He said he thought I was making up Mayor McCheese.
Making up Mayor McCheese. What a horrifying moment this was for me as a parent. Here I am, about to send my son off for his first year of college and I find out that he knows nothing of Mayor McCheese. Eighteen years of teaching him the important principles he needed to understand to be a respected man. Among those things are:
- Chivalry, courtesy and manners never go out of style. Holding a door, a smile, a firm handshake and pausing to help will get a gentleman far.
- Born To Run is the greatest single album of music ever recorded.
- There is no talking in the men’s room from the moment you reach the door until you are washing your hands. No exceptions, even if the building is on fire.
- A man who does not have time for his mother is not a man.
- Arriving late is better than never arriving at all. Leave early so you don’t have to rush.
- A-hole theory: If you hang around a bunch of a-holes, you’re going to get crap on you, even if you’ve done nothing wrong. Choose your friends wisely.
The McCheese Legacy.
I got so many lessons into him, but I never told him about the one shining example of a politician who was not suspect simply because he was a politician. During McCheese’s time in office (1971-1985) his image was that of a bumbling, easily flustered dandy in a top hat. I consider McCheese a peerless builder of consensus.
Fourteen years in office, not a hint of scandal. McDonaldland was always bright and clean. The citizens seemed happy.
Safety was the touchstone of the McCheese years. Yes, there was a clown around all the time, but he was not allowed to kill anyone. The Hamburgler went to jail every time he tried something. Every time.
I guess this was a reminder, albeit a very harsh one, that I must stay on top of my efforts to pass on the important life lessons as opportunities present themselves. In the next few weeks I am resolving to make sure the Omawari-son understands that:
- Fried Okra is good. Okra in gumbo is good. Okra in other forms, not so much.
- Devils and Dust is an underrated part of Bruce’s catalog of work.
- Ordering North Carolina style barbecue in other states is a mistake. It will not be right, no matter what the reviews say.
- Mayor McCheese is the greatest politician, ever.