Monday, September 26, 2005
Topz At Two Isn't So Tops
At lunchtime, I have a window of about 45 minutes where I can go without eating anything before my blood sugar starts to drop. Which means at 12:45, I'd better be eating lunch or at least grazing on free pre-meal bread or chips. Do not schedule a lunchtime meeting without serving lunch because I will eat your liver with some fava beans and chianti. Well, not really. You know what I mean.
Today, I got myself into a bit of a risky situation by agreeing to a 12 pm phone interview with a prospective employer which lasted, hmm, HALF AN HOUR. OK, then I was the stupid one after that because instead of going back to the office to eat, I went down the street to Target to buy stuff. 12:45 and I was out of Target but already the coach was starting to turn into a pumpkin. Yes, my time had run out. I needed to eat.
Back at the office, I ran into my friends who were on the way out who in turn hijacked me. Yes, they hijacked me because I have no mind of my own and instead of saying, "Oh no thanks, I'm just gonna go upstairs and eat the tofu with Trader Joe's Punjab Spinach Sauce that I had packed from home" when they said "We're going to the Coffee Bean, ya wanna come?" I caved into peer pressure and agreed. So yeah, instead of politely refusing so that I could run upstairs and scarf down my food in the privacy of my own sorry desk and raise my blood sugar back up to normal levels, I said, "Well OK, but I'm really hungry," and got hijacked.
"Cool! We'll go to the Coffee Bean in Toluca Lake and you can get food from Koo Koo Roo or Topz!" my friends suggested. OK yeah, this is gonna be fun.
I originally was going to go to Koo Koo Roo, not because I like it--in fact, I really don't like it--but because I've had it before and because I didn't feel like being that experimental in my current state of hunger. But I thought what the hell, I can at least write about a new place. And so I went to Topz. Supposedly, Topz is supposed to be the home of the healthier burger--did I just set myself up for an even bigger disaster?
There were two registers, only one of which was accepting cards, so it was just my luck that I had no cash on me and I was stuck behind high maintenance NBC Universal chick who seemed to be ordering food for her whole office. The cash only line, in the meantime, was moving with lightning speed. Come onnnnnnn...what are you ordering bee-yotch??????? Turns out she was ordering food for only two people--her total was only 14 bucks. So what the fuck was she ordering for so fucking long??? Oh well, no time to get mad, it was finally my turn.
I ordered at 1/4 Pound Angus Burger with cheese, and made it a combo with their fries which are called "Aero Fries" and a drink. While waiting for my order, I noticed the "condiments" bar behind me and proceeded to fill up a bunch of those little plastic cup thingies with their garlic ketchup and garlic mayo.
I got the thing to-go, because I had already been out too long and by the time I got back to my desk to actually eat it was 2pm. My window was long gone and I think all signs of hunger, of impatience, of lightheadedness had left my body and I was in some kind of weird state of shock. Yeah, my body had already said "Fuck you. You'll see. You'll get yours," to me.
I bit into this 1/4 lb. Angus cheeseburger of mine, first noticing that its untoasted whole wheat bun didn't float my boat at all. The patty actually had a nice charbroiled flavor, but the bun and all the other tasteless ingredients managed to take over. So thank goodness for garlic mayo and ketchup which I proceeded to smear in globs all over the underside of each bun. Oh, and those Aero Fries? They're air baked, hence the name. They're allright...quite crispy considering they came from an oven. But they still lacked that certain sinfulness, uh, like the crunch and taste of actual oil, that only a deep fryer can give. Oh well, nothing a little garlic mayo can't cure.
By the end of my meal, I had devoured the burger, all my fries, 3 cups of garlic mayo, 2 cups of garlic ketchup, and oh, about a quarter of my soda (because I don't like soda). I went on Topz's website to get some 411 on their nutritional stuff. A burger's 400-some calories, Aero Fries are 390. That alone is over 800 calories. And I didn't count all that mayo and ketchup (the best part of the whole meal), the cheese, and whatever part of that soda I drank. Healthy? Yeah right.
I guess my body can say "I told you so."
10119 Riverside Drive
Toluca Lake, CA 91602