Fast food is here to stay. Is it unhealthy? Most of the time. Is it mass produced with little care for customer satisfaction? Yes. But America’s love affair with the drive through burger and the chicken nugget is only growing, hopping across oceans and over borders in ways few phenomena ever can.
Like every cultural sensation, fast food has come with its fair share of urban legends with varying degrees of truth to them. Here are the top ten strangest tales to come out of the fast food universe.
1. A Woman (allegedly) Found a Finger in a Cup of Wendy’s chili
We’re protective of our food, and rightfully so. It’s always painful to be reminded that sometimes quality control just isn’t up to snuff.
Such was the case in 2005 when a woman named Anna Ayala filed a suit against the fast food chain Wendy’s claiming that she found a severed human finger in the cup of chili she bought.
The ensuing media firestorm was intense enough that Wendy’s began offering free shakes to locals in the San Jose area in an attempt to woo customers back. Experts studied the finger in question and determined that it had not been cooked with the actual chili and must have instead been added after the fact.
It was later determined to have belonged to an associate of Ayala’s husband who lost it in an industrial accident. How Ayala came to possess the severed digit remains a mystery. As the case wore on it became known that Ayala was constantly filing lawsuits against major corporations, apparently in an attempt to score some easy cash.
She was charged with attempted grand theft and conspiracy to file a false claim, and both her and her husband served jailtime shortly after conviction. So rest easy, everyone. Turns out it’s very rare to find human body parts in your food.