October 22, 2017

Try and Guess the Age of this Hamburger. It’s Crazy!


Recently, our extended family gathered at our home for a visit and my older nieces and nephews asked about  my “famous” burger. They wanted to see it and check out any changes that had happened in the last few years.

This post was initially shared Jan. 5, 2009 during my first year of blogging and thought I’d post this again since so many of you are new to my blog.

Can you even believe this? It’s still there, looking exactly the same and still quite a conversation starter. It’s helped me a bit since I am tip toeing through day 11 of my 17 Day Detox of sugar and carbs. This puts things back in perspective.

I love a great, big, juicy burger. In fact, I would honestly bypass a steak.

Yes, I said it!

I would bypass the meat among men, for a scrumptious burger and fries.

It’s become quite a longstanding family joke, since I did just that years ago at my brother’s rehearsal dinner.
Now,  I was just a mere 14 years old then. but admittedly, some things haven’t changed,



In the spirit of new healthy eating resolutions, and the attempt at disengaging my love of all things fried –

I am reminding myself what happened TWELVE YEARS AGO (updated: 16 years ago) when this burger was ordered!

Beware, I am warning you that this is the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

No lie – No exaggeration!
That date is correct!
Do you see it? Scrawled right there on the bun?

The date was written in 1997 to document a little experiment that I was trying.

Purpose: To determine If it doesn’t rot, is it still food?

(And yes, I was going through an all things natural, 100% whole food phase in my eating habits.)

This cheeseburger, from an anonymous food chain (don’t be fooled by the biscuit wrapper), was purchased and left to sit on my kitchen counter.

It was NEVER, EVER refrigerated.

What was the result?

It did not rot.
It did not mold.
It did not smell,
but it did preserve itself quite nicely, if I don’t say so myself.

You tell me!

I didn’t consume a fast food burger for two years after this experiment.

But please note…that was a decade ago.
I have found my way back to those drive thrus and we do love some $.99 double cheeseburgers! I’ve realized it’s all about moderation and balance. We try and encourage an 80/20% principle  of whole foods to junk.

I know many of you are asking, “Why in the world did you save that all these years?”
Meet me in person, and I’ll tell you.

But can you only imagine my great, great, grand childrens surprise when they open up my hope chest and find this little bit of legacy laying there for them to …….?

Ponder? Preserve? Preheat? hee hee

Yes, it’s still a great conversation starter.

*Stay tuned for more detailed results of our true scientific findings.
I am truly hoping that in the last 12 years some things have changed in the fast food industry.
My 8th grade son’s science experiment will be asking this same question, that I asked years ago.
He is using three varying burgers, along with free range beef that we bought, and a homemade roll (better get the wheat grinding).

Oh, by the way….we’re a bit behind on this, so any help from you science guru’s would be much appreciated. 😉


  1. Oh gross! That is terrible. We have given up fastfood this year; boy am I glad

    Lisa Q


  2. Unbelievable on many counts!! You are the “Supersize Me” of the blog world.


  3. Imperfect says:

    Yuck. Crazy experiment. I’m not sure I want a fast food burger after seeing that. But ask me again in a few weeks and I might have changed my mind. 🙂


  4. Yummmmmm….Now I know why I don’t eat the bun:)
    That is really kind of sick!
    Please don’t confuse me with the truth:)


  5. Sandy Toes says:

    Oh my goodness..that is just crazy but I believe it..we are all walking around with those stuck to our stomach probaly in the same form it went down!

    You are CRAZY but that’s why I love reading you!
    -sandy toes


  6. HeathahLee says:

    Oh. My. Gosh. That is stinkin’ hilarious! Ugh. And not a little disturbing!


  7. This is so hard to believe … and yet I’m NOT willing to duplicate the experiment at our house, so I guess we’ll just have to depend on yours to bring us the “low down”!!


  8. Musings of a Homeschooling Mom says:

    Wow! It is terrible to see that has held up that long! Thanks or sharing that with us!


  9. I would have to see this after we had to have drive thru tonight for dinner.
    Thanks for the heads-up.


  10. Kim Layton says:

    Wow! I think I’ll remember that the next time I go to order one! Too gross! 🙂


  11. Okay I am gagging!!! thinking I don’t love burgers as much as you do, cause i’m quite grossed out at the moment! :o) But on the parent side of also being in the process of a science projects -thats fantastic. My daughter is in 7th and we are under the gun to get hers completed…
    thanks for sharing your 1997 burger.. I’m showing my hubby..


  12. I love my fastfood too! It’s terrible. I know. I will actually go to the golden arches, on my own, with NO children.

    But…the burger of yours..Yikes! That’s almost too crazy to be true.

    Imagine what our bodies would be like if we didn’t feel them with such garbage.


  13. Oh my that is hard to believe. I rarely ever eat a hamburger anymore (unless we grill it ourselves)….maybe now I know why…GROSS!


  14. Nicole O'Dell says:

    LOL! That’s funny and gross!


  15. That is a cool experiment! It definitely doesn’t turn me away from fast food. Sorry, but I love my McDonald’s cheeseburgers.


  16. cityfarmer says:

    I eat about 2 jr. whoppers a year if that.
    Maybe deleting that bad habit all together.


  17. Smelling Coffee says:

    Oh my goodness! I can’t believe it. Good thing it doesn’t sit in our bodies that long. 🙂


  18. Valarie Lea says:

    Oh My Gosh! Can I print that picture out and put it up at my work to remind me to just say no when it comes to fast food.


  19. oh my word I think I may never eat fast food again!


  20. Pretty Organizer says:

    Oh my gosh you are a nut! And I LOVE IT! Yes, this belongs right next to the fine linens in the hope chest. I smell a multi-million dollar ebay bid coming on! Heck, MIckyDees may just call you up and offer to pay for your next 3 houses just to stash the evidence and hide this story! It may even be fit for NASA to take to space… Tang, 14 year old burger… it’s all good.

    Thanks for unwrapping your dehydrated food and sharing… YUMMM!


  21. Amanda@Imperfectly Beautiful says:

    That is so sick….and absolutely hilarious! What a great science project. I’m gonna remember that one.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving me a comment. Don’t you just LOVE random comments from new bloggy friends? They’re the best!

    Love you blog…I’ll be back!


  22. WOW! Are you kidding me!!?? It looks like you just bought it! That is just scary. And I was about to head out for a quick drive thru style lunch! 🙂


  23. Just found your blog…loved reading it!


  24. I may never eat fast food again. Thank you for the Public Service Announcement.


  25. I really do not know what to say. 🙂 I’m a little shocked! 🙂 Maybe I should give up fast food. Naaaaaah, I don’t think that could ever happen!


  26. Jeanette "Frogster" says:

    hilarious! I love finding that one french fry in the minivan when you can’t even remember the last time your family stopped through a drive-thru. And it still looks edible!


  27. Tricia Anne says:

    Un.believable!! Oh boy that turns my stomach! I was going to try an experiment many years ago, similar, only with an Oreo cookie. Poor thing never stood a chance in our home! :o) Yep, we ate it! :o)


  28. So does this mean when I die if I eat lots of those my family won’t have to pay an extra fee for preserving their loving MOM? LOL OK seriously, FUNNY BUT WRONG!!


  29. ALVN of WhisperWood Cottage says:

    That is so disturbing!


  30. Do it yourselfer says:

    OMGosh…i just ate one today! And I am completely grossed out! That is so crazy! yuck, yuck, yuck! thanks for the TMI!


  31. If only we humans could be as well preserved.

    It’s gross to think that this happens to our take out food. Where ever you got it from make we wonder what the hell they put in it.

    Something to think about next time I am hungry.



  32. Treasure Hunter says:

    What a great idea for the wheels on our completely edible cars for the science fair!


  33. I had to show my whole family this blog! It’s made headlines in our house! My hubby said he believes it would look like that because we find hamburgers half eaten from the bottom of our car 6mths later that look just like that! LOL Also my hubby is a chemistry teacher and wants to know what do you need for ideas?


  34. Lauren and Justin says:

    this is disgusting and hilarious at the same time!!! reminds me of “supersize me”


  35. That is really bad. I just watched a video of a guy who had 10 year old twinkies saved. They were really hard and smelly – disproving the twinkie forever shelf-life theory. Would not have guessed that about the good ol mcdees burger.


  36. How long did you say that thing was on your counter??? I can’t imagine. Sure takes the appetite away.


  37. Amy @ Finer Things says:

    Thanks (I think…) for the link. We're headed out of town today to visit my new baby nephew. Hmmmm, wonder where we'll eat?! 🙂


  38. FishMama says:

    Just PLEASE tell me it wasn't from In-N-Out Burger. Thank you. That is all.


  39. Very eye opening! I have a french fry experiment going on. I found it under the car seat, not sure how long it was there. It is now 2 years old, looking pristine!


  40. Hmm, interesting (and gross). I wonder what combo of artificial preservatives, natural preservatives (i.e. salt), cooking temperature (or how well-cooked), room temperature, relative humidity, etc. went into that preservation? I guess those would be among the factors that would need to be evenly controlled (or differences explicitly noted) between the subjects in your son’s experiment in order to have an accurate comparison. There are examples of well-preserved food in tombs, etc, that are much older than this and predate modern chemical preservatives, so there may be something additional going on here. That might be a fun, historical, aspect your son might like to explore, too in his notes on the experiment.


  41. I was forever changed by the documentary “Supersize Me”. Watch the commentaries at the end. I have not eaten a fast food burger from the big chains in several years. Do not even desire them. You will find that if you quit eating them for a while, you will not even like the taste and possibly the smell of them. This post only adds to that firm belief of YUCK!


  42. The meat should have decomposed into dust by now; it is was “real” bread, it would’ve been a moldy mess withing 4-5 days… this is just nasty.


  43. HEATHER TOTH says:

    Jen – i’ve told many people about this hamburger of yours b/c you showed it to us in Classical Conversations and I was disgusted and horrified. NO ONE ever BELIEVES ME! They all say, Nah….it’s not really as old as she says…. And I say YES IT IS! I KNOW her!!! It’s TRUE!!! I guess people don’t want to believe they have been eating something so horrible all these years. It’s easier to doubt the story rather than accept what they’ve been eating… I SAW IT, PEOPLE! Jen speaks the truth!! 😀 I’m pretty sure I haven’t had a McD’s hamburger since I laid eyes on your petrified one…



  1. […] to our fast paced society, it’s often easier to just stop at the drive thru (you know how I feel about that 12 year old hamburger….hee hee), and yes, I admit to doing this far too often during sports […]

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