BK Black Whopper: I Eat It So YOU Don’t Have To / by Conor Burnett

Stunt Foods™. That’s what I’ve taken to calling these. Every few weeks you’ll see the newest crazy thing that a fast food place has pulled out of their big butt as a trending topic on Twitter.

The flavor of the week (and not for the WEAK) is Burger King’s Black Halloween Whopper. It’s a Burger King Whopper with a BLACK BUN, not because it got burnt in the toaster, but because EVIL HALLOWEEN SPIRITS and A1 Steak Sauce are possessing them until Halloween. Though the DAREDEVIL in me wishes I had made it to Japan to try the slightly more sinister original incarnation, my stomach and my wallet both thank me for not making the pilgrimage. With the Stunt Foods™ trend obviously growing out of control in America, I knew it would only be a matter of time before it washed up on our shores, and wash up it did, just in time for Spooky Halloween. And what is more spooky than a fast food Burger pumped with even more chemicals than it normally is?

I trek into the Jersey City “Newport” Mall. Top 3 most sad places in New Jersey, AND THAT’S SAYING SOMETHING. It has two GameStops and a food kiosk that sells Pizza in a Cone. That sums up this mall to a T.

The line for the Burger King is staggeringly long, and staggeringly WIDE. My fear when I find my place at the end of it, that I’ll be associated with the sweaty behemoths in line with me. The food court is three floors up. I know that cows can’t climb down stairs, but I wonder if you can get them down escalators.

By the time my 15 minute wait is over, I no longer fear what the burger has in store for me. I’ve spent a quarter hour breathing in the noxious spores of the denizens of Newport Foodcourt (say that 5 times fast), so I know that whatever the burger has in store for me can’t do any more damage than that.

I bite into the burger. And then I bite again. And again, and again. Diet Coke isn’t a beverage, it’s to lube up the tracks so the black meat goop goes down quicker. I look at my empty hands. They’re so empty.

I was going to go back and get my MFA. I had plans to go to school to be a pro wrestler. I had dieted for a few days and lost some weight so I could be in excellent ring shape like Goldberg. I used this “stunt” as an excuse to eat garbage food. And I know when Pizza Hut puts out a crust stuffed with pepperoni or when Wendy’s adds another stack to the Baconator I’ll be right in the same spot.

Two weeks ago I was sitting in the exact same seat in the Pizza in a Cone. That same day my dog had a seizure and died™. He had a little doggy brain tumor in his little doggy liver that metastasized and entered his little doggy brain. The last time I had scratched his head, there was a tumor centimeters below my fingers. While this little thing that I love was writhing on the floor, raging against the dying of the light, I had in my hands and in my stomach and in my mouth Pizza stuffed into an ice cream cone. If it wasn’t the Pizza Cone, it would’ve been the Black Burger, or the breakfast sandwich from the Pizza Hut inside of the Jersey City Target. 

These Stunt Foods™ don’t make me feel better. I have things to text my friends and things to tweet and then it’s over.The meta-rush you get from the knowledge you’re eating an insane thing is as useless and shitty as the food is itself.

It’s all garbage.  I just ate 1009 calories, 200 of them from fat. I’m no closer to being a pro wrestler, or the President, or a father, than I was when I was 4.

My grandma had a stroke. I visited her in the hospital once three weeks ago and haven’t seen her since. I’m going to be driving her to physical therapy in a few days and I won’t be able to look her in the eyes. She loves me so much. The feet that she can’t feel in the shoes my Aunt has to tie for her will be rubbing against the Burger King bag that I threw on the floor of my passenger seat.

The limited edition Halloween Burger King Whopper isn’t to blame. If it turns into ash in your mouth, it’s your fault. 6/10.