According to the New York Times,
Guantanamo prisoners who cooperate
with interrogators are rewarded
with Happy Meals. Happy Meals
were invented by McDonalds in 1979
to make children forget Un-Happy Meals.
Un-Happy Meals is what children got
at home. Dry burnt meatloaf, boiled
potatoes, canned string beans.
Sometimes with a side of yelling
and dad pounding the table
while drunk. Happy Meals comprise
a single hamburger and fries, along with
a small drink. A toy is typically included.
The packaging and toy are part
of a marketing tie-in. Usually
a television show, movie,
or toy brand. I remember my first
Happy Meal. The fries were greasy,
the burger gave me diarrhea, but the toy
was everything I had hoped for:
A set of four Furbies. One in white,
one in red, one in blue, one in orange.
Furbies were fun because they were
doe-eyed troll creatures with a patch
of wild hair on top, usually purple.
I would stroke that hair whenever
I was bored or got nervous,
usually in math class. A complete set
of all 80 Furbies, in original packaging,
goes for $899 on eBay. Guantanamo
prisoners cooperating during the months
of July and August 2015 receive a Minion
as their Happy Meal prize. They’re
the hot toy now, to promote the new
movie coming out this summer. Spinoff
of the original "Despicable Me" franchise.
Minions are small, yellow pill-like
creatures. They wear big goggles
over their faces that make them
look like divers trolling the sea
for cartoon treasure. The best thing
about Happy Meal Minions is
that they talk. Guantanamo prisoners
lonely in their cells can press a button
in the middle of their back. Minions
say things that can only be understood
by other Minions. The irony that
Guantanamo prisoners make Minions
talk as a reward for talking has not
hurt Happy Meal popularity. Recently
declassified documents reveal
the supremacy of all things Minion.
"Minion" derives from the Middle French
mignon (“lover, royal favorite, darling”).
In Arabic, the term has religious overtones.
The Minion is a giant bird that tucks
in its wings in order to appear small.