By MARC LIPMAN | Aug 29, 2018

Alternate universes have long been a tool for science fiction writers to explore what didn’t happen but could have happened. Here’s one instance:

In a breaking news story, a spokesman for Donald Trump announced that Mr. Trump has just purchased a well-known fast food restaurant chain. The chain, which will now be known as Donald’s, will have some changes. Its signature sandwich will be the Big D, a quarter pound of baloney on not-a-grain-of-truth bread. There will also be the Two-Faced sandwich, whose ingredients will be shipped to each restaurant in pork barrels.

French fries will no longer be served. Instead, home fries will be offered with all meals. English muffins will not be used for breakfast meals and will be replaced by corn muffins. No Spanish onions or Bermuda onions will be used. Salad dressings will be limited to thousand island, ranch and honey-mustard – no Italian, French or Russian. Cheeseburgers will only be made with American cheese.

Equipment will be modernized. The old infra-red lamps that are used to keep meals warm will be replaced by global warming devices.

All adults will now have to have a valid drivers license or passport to order food. In addition, Donald’s playgrounds will now have armed guards and barbed-wire fences.

Other things will be changed. According to the spokesman, “Ronald will be retired. A clown just doesn’t portray the image we want.” In addition, the department that determines the nutritional values of the meals and posts the information on the menus will be abolished. “Mr. Trump knows that all food is nourishing. Why discriminate?”

The senior discount will be abolished and replaced by a rich people’s discount. The spokesman stated that while many older and less fortunate people frequently eat there, few wealthy ones do.  “As far as their status, we will take their word for it,” he said. “No 1040s will be required. Any person with notarized bankruptcy papers will be exempt from paying.”

 After hearing this announcement, a certain competitor announced that it will have a new Whopper every week. It also debunked rumors that it does not have a valid green card and suggested that the symbol of Donald’s be changed to fallen arches.

A few weeks after the acquisition, Mr. Trump decided to visit one of his restaurants. To keep from attracting attention, he dressed in workmen’s clothes, added a beard, and put on a different hairpiece. After getting his meal and sitting down, he noticed an old man and an old woman sitting at a table near him. The old man was eating a burger while the old woman sat watching him.

Feeling magnanimous, Mr. Trump ordered another burger and put it at the woman’s place. Noticing that she still was just watching, he told her, “Now each of you has something to eat.” The old lady replied, “Yes, but we just have one set of teeth.”

Marc Lipman lives in Green Brook, N.J., and Barnegat Light.




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