Here we are, talking about candles that smell like McDonald’s. I guess it’s better than talking about candles that smell like Gwyneth Paltrow’s vagina. But still, food brands are just doing too damn much.
McDonald’s just announced a six-candle collection, each scented like one of the components of a Quarter Pounder with cheese, or as it’s called in France, a Royale with Cheese. The bun, the ketchup, the pickle, the cheese, the onion, and the 100% Fresh Beef.” The set is made using, “soy wax blend, fine fragrance, essential oil, cotton wick” and you are encouraged to burn all six at once, “for maximum deliciousness.”
At this point, we have enough fast food-brand candles that we can draw up our very own D&D-inspired alignment scheme. Dunkin’ worked with Homesick to launch a collection of three doughnut-scented candles, an inoffensive premise that resulted in a neutral evil rendering of what a Dunkin’ in Massachusetts smells like. I’ve also had the personal misfortune of dipping my nose into one of Qdoba’s queso-scented candles and I wouldn’t wish it on my loud upstairs neighbors.
This kind of unhinged behavior is acceptable on Twitter, where food brands are free to troll and thirst trap each other all they want. Planters even killed Mr. Peanut, an absurd premise only tolerable in cyberspace. But IRL, we’re not really sure who is trying to make their home smell like queso. Or even a Dunkin’ donut.
It’s true that scent is one of the most powerful senses. Often, it only takes a whiff to transport us to our childhoods. And many a childhood has a McDonald’s moment or two. But just because I have fond memories of bringing McDonald’s to school after my mom took me to a doctor’s appointment, or because I spent a thrilling afternoon at a McDonald’s birthday party, doesn’t mean I want my adult apartment to smell like a hamburger. The nose is the portal to the instant flashback, but it also has its limits.