The Cheeseburger

Carly - Mount Royal, New Jersey
Entered on November 4, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

I believe in the Cheeseburger. This ungodly disgusting slab of meat soaked in splatters of discount grease, mashed to a centimeter wide to rob you of your good dollar, and perfectly mounted by a slice of horrific neon orange cheese just nuked in the microwave, is the epitome of all human creation. To me, it represents the depths of compassion, though those poor bovine creatures are not especially reaping the rewards of this heartfelt emotion, because it has proved to me the importance of “giving” to others.

After life unexpectedly served up another horrendous “worst day ever” for my delectable breakfast, I was still shaken and teary-eyed. A good friend of mine was driving me home and the air in the car was heavy with awkward silence. I had managed to curl myself into, what I considered, a minuscule and insignificant ball in the passenger seat. I probably just looked like a teenager embarrassingly trying to manage the “fetal position”. My friend was not sure on how to reach me, and kept throwing glances my way that were streaked with pity and uncomfort. Should he pat my hand and tell me everything will be better or just take me home? What if I started bawling again? I continued to stare bleary eyed out the window, not noticing where we arrived.

A McDonald’s cheeseburger made its threatening entrance in the hand of my friend placed just under my nose. I stared a moment, entirely bewildered, and then looked up at his sheepish eyes. What an odd situation it appeared to be, but I thanked him and stuffed the burger into my mouth with an odd feeling stirring inside.

After I got home, I considered. It wasn’t the point that it was probably half frozen, 3-day old meat being digested by my disgruntled stomach, it was the sentiment of giving, and of helping. At that point I realized how I took for granted the fact that someone would always be there to help. No one had to. Even as a friend, they could have dumped my lame self home without a nod or goodbye. But no, he took the time to screw his face up with worry and he reached out to me in my time of need.

Human compassion becomes overlooked in life. I watch a horror movie and wonder how someone would do that, I mean, wouldn’t they want to help instead? Not everyone does. I believe in the essence of giving. Because regardless how small, awkward, or strange, like a cheeseburger, the sentiment that someone cares makes the difference.