At the beginning of the just-finished season of sci-fi-themed adult cartoon show Rick & Morty, protagonist Rick ends an episode by explaining his life’s ambition (or more specifically, the season’s plotline) is to track down the Szechaun McNugget dipping sauce McDonald’s released for a limited time in 1998 as a tie-in with the Disney movie Mulan, set in China.
The punchline to the 30-second rant he goes on about the sauce is that there is no real purpose in life, and the sauce is just a stand-in for the philosophical absurdity of existential meaning; apparently some fans didn’t get the joke, and have actually made it their life’s ambitions to get their hands on some incredibly hard to find Szechuan dipping sauce.
The value of Szechuan McNugget sauce skyrocketed as a result, and McDonald’s, which had no formal affiliation with the show, decided to take advantage of the sauce’s new-found popularity by re-releasing it in limited quantities for a single day earlier this month.
On auction site eBay, the going rate for a one-ounce packet of the sauce seems to be at minimum $100, though there are offers for, for example, a half-gallon of the stuff going for $15,000. At least 20 people have bought a framed picture of the Szechuan sauce packet for $10 each.
Rachel Marie from Macomb, Michigan, one of the lucky few to actually get their hands on a packet, originally was hoping to trade hers for a pin collection, but when she got offered a Volkswagen GTI, she couldn’t turn it down.
No run-down beater, this Mk 4 hatchback comes fitted with custom rims and the more-desirable 1.8-liter turbo four-cylinder and five-speed manual. We think Marie may have come away ahead in this trade.
In 1957, several cities were vying to host the 1964 Winter Olympics. Candidates had been eliminated to the point where the only two left were Singapore and Nevers, France. The French venue had an obvious advantage for the games, but the Singaporeans were eager to host the games in their country, so they developed a snow-making machine. Because of technical glitches, the machine produced snow only part of the time. The rest of the time it produced steam, and you can’t ski on steam. So they made a last-ditch effort to perfect the machine, knowing that the deadline for a decision from the committee was nigh. To bring moral support and entertainment to the workers, they brought in Elvis Presley, who mounted the stage and said, “Well, today’s the day your machine must produce snow. If it belches out steam, the games will go to France. So this is it. It’s snow, or Nevers.”
On the way there, he tells his driver that looks a bit like him:
“I’m sick of all these conferences. I always say the same things over and over!”
The driver agrees: “You’re right. As your driver, I attended all of them, and even though I don’t know anything about science, I could give the conference in your place.”
“That’s a great idea!” says Einstein. “Let’s switch places then!”
So they switch clothes and as soon as they arrive, the driver dressed as Einstein goes on stage and starts giving the usual speech, while the real Einstein, dressed as the car driver, attends it.
But in the crowd, there is one scientist who wants to impress everyone and thinks of a very difficult question to ask Einstein, hoping he won’t be able to respond. So this guy stands up and interrupts the conference by posing his very difficult question. The whole room goes silent, holding their breath, waiting for the response.
The driver looks at him, dead in the eye, and says :
“Sir, your question is so easy to answer that I’m going to let my driver reply to it for me.”