On Defending The Indefensible

We live in truly divisive times. These days, contemporary culture consistently finds itself torn between the opinions of critics and the tastes of audiences at large, and judgement from both sides seems unceasing – not to mention bilious.

By which I mean to say, I am sick of being shat on for loving 7/11 sandwiches, those explosions of readily-available pleasure purchasable at any local 7/11 branded service station/one stop shop. There is no shame in seeking out less than refined pleasures, and to deny a foodstuff that has been chemically engineered to please you is nothing less than an act of self-hatred.

7/11 sandwiches might not be pretty; they might not always aim for Vivaldi-like symphonies of satiation, and I might have once found a little white worm in one, but that won’t stop me from eating and loving them. To that end, here is a run down of the finest 7/11 sandwiches available to you; a paean dedicated to the eternal Shannon Nolls of the gas station cuisine scene.

7/11 Egg Salad Sandwich

Of all 7/11 sandwiches, the egg salad variety is the most bare bones, featuring nothing but two slices of pale bread, some freeze-dried lettuce, and a mush of salty, eggy paste. It is also decidedly hit and miss: sometimes if the sandwich has been left to sit for too long, the bread will become soggy, and the egg paste will turn startlingly liquid-like in its consistency. But if consumed at the precise moment, egg salad sandwiches are a perfect mix of minimalist presentation and maximalist pleasures, not to mention a finely-wrought wedding between beauty and economy.

7/11 Chicken Schnitzel Sandwich

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The hulking monstrosity known as the chicken schnitzel sandwich is best worked up to slowly, and is not suggested as an entry point for beginners. It is, after all, the size of a house brick, and often just about as easy to digest. It can also unfortunately fall victim to disassembly between the moment it is picked up and the moment it reaches its intended maw, a problem all overzealous foodstuffs fall victim to. But each of these failings is also its own kind of success, and what the schnitzel lacks in precision it more than makes up for in sheer bombastic excess. Failure is the hallmark of ambition, after all.

7/11 Mystery BreakfastSandwich

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A limited edition snack, this sandwich presents itself as “bacon and egg” flavoured – but to be perfectly honest it resembles neither bacon nor eggs. Instead, it hits the palate rather like a chemical paste designed by a scientist whose only knowledge of bacon and eggs comes described to him via committee, and the mysterious foodstuff has strangely nutty, disarmingly sweet notes. It also doubles as a real pick me up, given your endless guesses as to what you’re actually eating will wake you up as abruptly as any cup of coffee.

7/11 Ham And Cheese Sandwich

Some might argue that 7/11’s ham and cheese sandwiches are distinctly run-of-the-mill, and taste like just about any other easily-purchasable ham and cheese sandwiches. But some people are idiots, fools with no sense when it comes to the ins and outs of low quality, highly salted service station foodstuffs. The ham and cheese sandwiches available at 7/11 mix up an only just detectable whorl of stringy, meaty textures with the reliability of that weird plasticky yellow cheese, combining the adventurous with the accessible, and creating a balanced testimony to the power of invention in the process.

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