Photo: natalisla (iStock), Illustration: Natalie Peeples
FeaturesStories from The Takeout about food, drink, and how we live.  

I hate mayonnaise. You don’t need to know the particulars of why I hate the taste of it. Why, just thinking about that taste right now triggers my gag reflex, which is neat. But suffice it to say, I’ve hated mayonnaise my entire life. And my repeated exposures to mayonnaise have not improved my opinion of the substance. It’s fucking disgusting, and it’s been an unwelcome interloper in my food—sandwiches, burgers, sushi, you name it—for over 40 years.

Will any of that stop mayonnaise lovers from trying to convince me that it’s good? Will it stop them from incepting it into my food without telling me, in some fruitless, psycho attempt to alter my stance? No and no. Even otherwise reasonable people are more than happy to indulge in mayonnaise bullying, like so:

Et tu, Chrissy? Mayonnaise is among the top-selling condiments in America. By some measures, it’s number one overall. Since we live in a consumerist dystopia, this dumb statistic is all that mayo-stans require as personal validation to proselytize their devil lotion to the rest of us. That is them owning you with real logic.

Well, here’s another stat for them, a fact that I know in my soul: No dining request gets ignored/forgotten more often than a request to hold the mayo. I know this because mayonnaise has ambushed me on dozens of occasions, in any number of flimsy disguises. Oftentimes, restaurants don’t even ask if you want it. Or worse: if you say you don’t, they don’t care. They just assume everyone adores it and then they slather it on like a fucking war crime.

Advertisement

That is why I hate mayo. This goes way past the taste of mayo and more to an epidemic of shitty manners. I hate mayonnaise itself, the way it festers all over my food like a blob of acrid pus. But what I hate even more is the strange national insistence upon mayonnaise being a vital condiment, even though countless people hate mayonnaise and science explains why it can cause the human brain to register disgust. No matter. When I tell certain people that I don’t like mayo, they react as if they just discovered an alien life form.

You… don’t… like it? 

Then they interrogate me like I’m hiding Russian microfilm on my person. Are you sure you don’t like it? But it’s just eggs and oil! What about Duke’s mayo? What about Kewpie mayo? For real, that’s different. What about aioli? You can’t hate aioli. What about Sriracha mayo? Sriracha mayo will change your life! What do you put on sandwiches then? Don’t you like coleslaw? Would you like mayo in a house? Would you like it with a mouse?

Advertisement

These fucking idiots act like life without mayonnaise is a trek through an endless, cracked desert. In my experience, it’s extremely easy—enjoyable, even—for me to consume sandwiches and barbecue and other foods without mayo getting involved at all. Or at least, it’d be easy if the mayo Nazis wouldn’t slip it in at every open conceivable opportunity. They are unable to register my dislike whatsoever. One time, at a restaurant in Los Angeles that describes itself as “nautical-themed,” I asked for something without mayo. The staff then passive-aggressively informed me that they didn’t do substitutions, even though what I was asking for was not a substitution but an omission… an omission of food I cannot be re-educated to like. I wasn’t asking them to swap out mayo with edible gold leaf. Nothing else on the menu was mayo-free. I wanted to burn the joint to the fucking ground.

<Fart noise>
Photo: ALLEKO (iStock)

This is not me trying to convince pro-mayo people to hate it. I swear. This isn’t the standard web rant where I tell you that a thing you like is actually bad. If you like mayo, go with God. I won’t try to dissuade you from it. You’re actually lucky in that your epicurean existence is not littered with vile, soggy booby traps. All I ask is that you mayo bullies respect my distaste for that shit, and that you recognize the extent of that distaste. I could tell you that I don’t like mayo a million times, and I have. It always falls on deaf ears. Too many mayo people think that haters can—or worse, that they should—tolerate a little bit of mayo anyway.

Advertisement

They would be wrong. I cannot tolerate any fucking mayo. It’s a critical part of NOTHING. This isn’t England, man. Mayonnaise is not its own fucking food group here. If you scrape the mayo off my bread like a lazy asshole, I still know it’s there. I can still taste it contaminating my meal. I can feel it infecting my body, so I don’t appreciate it when people try to convince me that I’m wrong to dislike mayonnaise, as if life needs repulsive potato salad. Every time I politely refuse mayo, I am met with endless gaslight attempts. But it’s good! Motherfucker, if I liked it, I would know by now. Telling me to like mayo is like telling a right-handed person to use their left hand from now on.

Even worse than the bullying is when these tuna salad zombies turn condescending and act like my life is sad without mayo. Oh, you’re missing out on a whole world of flavor… like I haven’t been dragged into that world against my will over and over again, biting into food and instantly recognizing that unmistakably sulfuric, gloppy mayo flavor. On my deathbed, I’m not gonna sit there and express regret over all the quality time I missed with mayonnaise. Instead, I will curse you mayo humpers and demand you all be consigned to hell.

Advertisement

I fucking hate mayonnaise. This is a certainty for me. You’ll never fucking get me to un-hate it, and I dunno why you’d bother to try. Despite that fact, I encounter this form of bullying with no other food I dislike. For example, I also don’t like olives. You’ll live. When I ask people to hold the olives, they actually listen. They get it. They don’t gasp and then spend hours trying to wrap their fucking tiny brains around the notion. They don’t put extra olives onto my pizza to teach me some kind of sadistic lesson.

But with mayonnaise, people act as pushers over and over again, pontificating on how food just isn’t food without it. They all wanna yum my yuck.

Stop doing this. Stop perpetuating these gross lies. Mayo is not welcome on my plate. Ever. Get over yourself and your affair with this garbage. Have the goddamn common courtesy to listen to people when they tell you that they wouldn’t like any. Stop trying to poison me with mayonnaise. Fuck mayo, fuck aioli, fuck chicken salad, fuck thousand island dressing, fuck coleslaw, and fuck you and your presumptuousness about what mass-produced toxic swill that people ought to be eating. And if you can’t live with that notion, well, then it’s my turn to feel bad for you.

Advertisement