Burgers Gone Wild

Addicted to burgers on the run.

Behold the Burger Issue. You would think that after weeks of reading burger stories, looking at burger photographs and illustrations, attending a burger cover shoot, and seeing burgers in my dreams that I would be absolutely sick of the things.

You would be wrong.

Like many of you, I am a burger addict. It began when I was a kid and looked forward to family trips when I could order two basic burgers and fries from McDonald’s or a multitude of other fast food joints (does anybody remember Burger Chef?). In high school, burgers seized an even stronger hold because I worked the counter at McDonald’s (most memorable customer order: “I’d like a cheeseburger, no cheese.’’).

This was before the advent of drive-thru, a phenomenon that has fueled my decades-old practice of eating on the go. If you see me glancing downward while stopped at a red light, unlike many motorists, I’m not texting or reading messages. I’m checking my shirt and pants to see how much of the burger toppings escaped the bun. 

Eating while driving is not a safe practice, but I just may be about to break the habit. Because I’m determined to eventually try all of the burgers on our bucket list, plus the O-Mag cover burger from Beth’s—and there’s absolutely no way you can hold any of these monsters with one hand and drive. In preparation for this moveable feast, I have resumed four-times-a-week workouts at Planet Fitness. If I don’t chicken (burger?) out, this endeavor will take just 11 months. Then again it could take 11 years. Or maybe this is all just another burger dream. Anyway, stay tuned to this space and Facebook.

In the meantime, enjoy our Burgermania package, with dining critic Joseph Hayes as your guide to the chains, the outrageous concoctions, the local favorites, plus shakes, fries and much more. Photo editor Roberto Gonzalez captures the burgers in all their glory, while illustrator Elly Walton shows perfectly the concept of “Burger Rapture.’’ 

Alas, there is more to city life than burgers. Also in this issue, Michael McLeod profiles the Orlando Philharmonic’s new music director, Eric Jacobsen, and the excitement surrounding his debut in October; The Alfond Inn in Winter Park serves as the stunning setting for our annual look at fall fashion trends; Megan Padilla finds a dearth of things to do in Micanopy, which makes it the ideal relaxing getaway; and columnist Greg Dawson tells how his craving for a juicy steak drew him to a financial seminar he had no business attending.

Indeed, man does not live by burgers alone.

Categories: Column