Tim Horton's on the Dustheap of History, or, The Maple Dip Is Better for You. Really.
Is anyone else getting just a tad irritated with Tim Horton's or am I alone in this?
We can talk about the metastasis of Tim Horton coffeshops on virtually every street corner of the land, their contribution to car culture and uglification of our neighbourhoods; we can talk about the appropriateness of a national icon being foreign owned; we can talk about the slightly sinister, Orwellian overtones of their latest advertising slogan ("Always Fresh. Always There."); we can talk about how we're beeing branded and blanded to death by the sheer ubiquitousness of Tim's; we can talk about how true community is really created in small family-owned and run restaurants and cafes, not in a prepackaged plastic-and-laminate soulless franchise operations staffed by the surly and the underpaid; we can talk of the silly public relations stunt of shipping a Tim's to Afganistan, complete, it seems, with the aforementioned surly employees.
Or we can talk about the "Always Fresh" food.
The fact is, Tim Horton's isn't really that healthy, being loaded with salt and simple sugars and fat. The twisted cruel irony is that Tim's core product --- doughnuts --- the food associated with overweight cops and Homer Simpson, is actually healthier for you than, say, a bagel or a muffin.
A maple dip doughnut contains 210 calories, 8g of fat and 190 mg of sodium.
A flaxseed bagel (marketed for the anti-carcinogenic properties of flaxseed) has 310 calories, 5 g of fat and 580 mg of sodium. Add the cream cheese --- and you would have to have a heart of stone not too --- and you're adding 144 calories, 18 g of fat and 190 mg of sodium. Total: 454 calories, 23 g of fat and 770 mg of sodium. Don't even think about getting that bagel buttered too.
12 grain bagel --- well, that should be healthier. It's got grains! 12 of them! Sadly, no. 310 calories, 6 g of fat, and 600 mg of salt. With cream cheese: 454 calories, 24 g of fat and 790 mg of sodium.
Then we come to the wasteland of muffins. Take the wheat carrot muffin, for example, which somehow conjures up visions of happy glossy eyed vegans: you get grain and vegetables all together! Except that is has 400 calories, an astonishing 19 g of fat, and 660 mg of sodium, albeit in a tasty little package. All you need is a side order of blood thinners, 'cause that fat is going straight to your arteries.
So much for the food. In Tim's defence, I have to say the crap you get at McDonald's or Burger King is probably worse by an order of magnitude, but that, unfortunately, isn't saying much.
The funny thing is, I like Tim's coffee. I drink it by the gallon. I'd take it intravenously if were possible. So when a faceless corporation starts to irritate the likes of me, it's probably time for them to watch out. We're a fickle lot, us consumers. Any hint of criticism, a whiff of ennui, the slightest nuance of negativity and we're gone. Just ask Mother's Restaurants. Or Eaton's. Or K-Mart.
Blogging note: Posts have been a little scarce the last week or so, owing to work and personal committments on both our parts. And the season of joy and frantic consumerism is upon us. Well, we'll do what we can.