It is clear that we are living in the worst possible timeline. Everything is terrible, and now we can add fortune cookies to the list of things that have been ruined forever.
Chinese cuisine is one of those comforts of life that you can count on. No matter what happens, I can always count on my favorite Chinese restaurant to deliver the same great dining experience. I’ve been ordering from the Jade Palace on Route 9 in Wappingers Falls for nearly two decades. Their food is consistently delicious and, in my opinion, far exceeds any other Chinese restaurant in the Hudson Valley. However, a recent change in their fortune cookies has left me and other diners very disappointed.
After enjoying a recent meal at Jade Palace, my family opened our fortune cookies. Mine said, “You’ll soon be on your way to a brighter financial future.” I was very excited about this promise of money because most of the time I get something much less specific like “you are a special person”.
As I began to think about the source of this recovered money, my son opened his fortune. He read it aloud saying, “Wealth creation starts with small changes. Then my wife read, “You deserve to earn more than what you are currently receiving.
What are the odds that our three cookies hold very specific fortunes to make more money? I don’t think I’ve ever seen such simple predictions from a fortune cookie. Suspicious, I investigated my fortune more closely. When I returned it, I was immediately horrified. Fortune was no fortune at all. It was a stupid advertisement.
Apparently, Jade Palace is now selling advertising space INSIDE its fortune cookies. The ad was from a credit card company, which is why all of our “fortunes” were about becoming more financially secure. I felt betrayed, much like when Ralphie in A Christmas Story realizes that Little Orphan Annie’s “secret message” was actually a shitty Ovaltine commercial.
The only saving grace was that when I read the ad in the traditional fortune cookie fashion, it made me laugh again – “This debit card generates credit…in bed.”
Some traditions are not intended for commercialization and the fortune cookie is one of them. Other Chinese food lovers I spoke to about the change were equally horrified, calling it an “abomination” and “totally screwed up”. One person even told me it was the “end of civilization as we know it”.
They may be exaggerating a bit, but honestly, what is it? QR codes have no place in fortune cookies. I know times are tough, but are these cheap desserts so expensive that restaurants now have to resort to selling ad space inside? I’d be happy to pay 25 cents more for a real fortune, which is probably way more than one of these cookies actually costs.
Unfortunately, I don’t see this trend going away. In fact, I did some research and the company behind these monetized fortune cookies claims to have their treats filled with ads in over 50% of Chinese restaurants in America, gaining more and more customers every day. . It’s really unfortunate.
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