McDonald’s, I’m good ‘n cold and I have two egg McMuffins! (365:241)

McDonald’s, I’m good ‘n cold and I have two egg McMuffins! (365:241). Copyright © 2011 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.

I love Egg McMuffins.

Sorry, but it is true. However, that’s jumping ahead a little bit. I was the first to arrive for Biometrics scanning – which was great because it was all over in ten to fifteen minutes. There is probably a joke to be made about an Englishman, a Jamaican and a Russian waiting in line for Biometrics, but it will have to wait for another day.

I guess I made somebody’s day, as the lady taking my fingerprints said “it is great to start the week with a laugh” this was after busting out laughing because I was nonplussed as to why my thumb print still matched, when it shouldn’t. Then it dawned on me… I’d injured the other hand.

You are not supposed to take cameras along for the biometrics appointment so I saw lots of pictures I couldn’t take while walking to my appointment, and by the time I walked back to the hotel the light had changed and the pictures weren’t there any more.

It was hot and rapidly getting hotter in St Louis so I decided to head on home. On the way back I stopped at Pacific, Missouri for an egg McMuffin, and I couldn’t believe my luck when I was told there was a two for one offer! My attempts to take this picture of one of my McMuffins attracted the attention of the staff, but fortunately I wasn’t asked to stop – probably because I’d deliberately hid myself away from everyone else which I guess was also rather suspicious!

Copyright © 2011 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.



  1. It’s so sad that so many people now automatically react badly to seeing people take photographs. Particularly if they are photographs that they just don’t understand. Nobody seems to believe me that I am just one of thousands (tens of thousands?) of people who do, or did, or have attempted to take a self portrait every day.

  2. I agree. you hear about a lot or paranoia, and the officials often don’t know (and don’t care) about the rules. I’m normally discrete, but the 1.8 lens has a long focal length, so I had a leg up on the seat beside me to rest the camera on my knee – it’s too heavy to hold otherwise. So I probably did look a bit strange, and the camera with the battery grip is large. So I can’t complain that someone came and talked to me.

    I do try to respect peoples sensitivities, which might be why I’ve not had many problems.

    I’ve did have one Job’s worth request that I delete pictures – which I did. I wouldn’t do it now though – it’s illegal you’re effectively destroying the evidence that supports any legal claim that you were taking the pictures in the first place 🙂 Bit of a catch 22.

    A friend got quite badly dealt with in London and ended up in an article in the Telegraph about photogs being harassed. So it does happen.

  3. Interesting point about destroying the evidence that proves you are not doing anything wrong. I think photographers mostly agreeing to delete photos when asked (photos that were perfectly legitimate) was a bad mistake, set a bad precedent. But we can change that.
    I’m lucky in that I have never (so far) been questioned about what I’m doing. But mostly I either make a point of looking like a tourist (if doing street things) or am discreet if doing stuff elsewhere. Although the people with me are not always: “what are you taking a photo of now?” or “do you want me to take that for you?”.

  4. Even better, they may be asking you to destroy the *only* evidence that you were taking pictures when you shouldn’t have been; the camera could have been turned off for example, I often frame pictures without the camera on just to see if there really is a picture there.

    As to the McDonald’s staff I think they were just genuinely curious about what I was doing.

    Here’s a few links – but beware this topic is a time-suck and often full of *opinions* rather than facts:

    Flickr Photographers’ rights group:

    UK Rights summary, ought to be similar in your part of the world:

    US Rights summary, I carry this with me at all times (One of the few that was drafted by a real lawyer):

    And the Telegraph article which included the experience of my friend Louis: