History climaxed with the opening of a floating McDonalds in 1986

Yes, it is true, humanity can never reach the lofty heights gained during the ’86 Vancouver Worlds Fair, with the opening of the “McBarge”. It will be a uneventful slide into obscurity and oblivion for the human race for from this point on, we have won life!

Have you ever found yourself on some stupid marina, with nothing but the dumb ocean around, boy isn’t that guy a square, thinking: I want nothing more than to crush a happy-meal with a side of fillet-o-fish? Well, behold the majestic McBarge chugging towards you against the horizon! Glinting in the sunlight like the mighty thunderbolt of Zeus, as it glides effortlessly through the undisturbed water, Poseidon couldn’t hold this vessel back, it is such a perfect object that the water parts imperceptibly before this McMoses-ship. You can get your happy-meal with a fillet-o-fish on the side, here my friend, or even just a humble chicken nugget! This is the climax of your life, once you step off this floating Shangri-La, you would have reached enlightenment, found heaven on Earth and the answer to all the infinite questions of the universe, you can lie down and fade from this world. It will never get better than this.

Yes, the officially named Friendship 500 (which doesn’t have the roll off the tongue, mouth-wateringly provocative name like “McBarge”), was constructed as one of the attractions for Vancouver tourism during the ’86 Worlds Fair, however lets face it, it would outshine any feeble pavilions that any measly country could think to include. The fair was even opened by Prince Charles and Lady Dianna, whom I don’t think it is any stretch of the imagination to suppose, would have been the first in line to order a McChicken Burger with extra lettuce (a little McDonalds code there for you). It was designed by Robert Allan Ltd., which I only mention because on this navel architectural design firm’s Wikipedia page this fact is not included anywhere! Shame on you!

The idea was to reinvigorate McDonalds to a growing class of people who where beginning to shun fast-food chains, and I mean, what’s more classy that McDonalds on the water? The restaurant could then chug away to different parts of the expo and hopefully live a long and happy life afterwards exploring the waterways of the Canadian North, enriching the lives of the small-towns folk it happened upon in its wanderings, and when the towns people turn back around to thank the McBarge for all it’s done, repairing estranged families, rescuing an injured cat, teaching children how to stand up to bullies, etc, etc, it has already moved on.

Sadly, fate had other plans in store. In 1991 the McBarge was asked by the new owners of the expos site to move along and came to settle amongst an oil refinery, abandoned by all those who claimed to love her. This is why we don’t deserve nice things.

Recently, however, there have been plans to renovate the McBarge and create a new waterfront marina in Mission, British Colombia. I find these plans shocking and offensive. Defiling the corpse of a once proud vessel, who was the best of us, certainly better than anyone I’ve ever known. When will the atrocities of the human race end?

You’ve earned a rest, McBarge. Sleep well.


Lovejoy, B 2015, ‘The McBarge: a failed floating McDonald’s that wants a second chance’, Atlas Obscura, http://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/the-mcbarge-a-failed-floating-mcdonalds-that-wants-a-second-chance.

Morgan, H 2013, ‘McBarge: Abandoned floating McDonalds to be given new life as a marina in Canada’, InHabitat, http://inhabitat.com/mcbarge-abandoned-floating-mcdonalds-to-be-given-new-life-as-a-marina-in-canada/

There are also many videos of attractions and footage from Expo 86, such as this, you can even hear one women raving over how nice Princess Dianna’s skin was, so smooth.


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