Illustration for article titled This Cell Phone Cooking Game Has Me Irate Over Its Slander of New York Cuisine

Screenshot: Nordcurrent UAB

I spent so much money on a phone not because I need to have the latest technology in order to live my life and communicate with other people. It’s because I need something that can hold all the memory taken up by the obscene amount of games I have download, even though they are all essentially the same. My latest obsession is a time management cooking game called Airplane Chefs. In Airplane Chefs you are a stewardess in a major city and you have to serve all of the customers on your flight in the time allotted. Easy shit is made challenging by the “cooking” you have to do, which varies based on the city you have landed in. The draw of the game is the shifting food, which is supposed to be thematically reflective of the real-life location.

This seemed great when I was playing in Denver and London where the main meals were burgers and full English breakfast, respectively. After wining my way through Sydney, Denver, and London I finally earned enough game coins to open New York and was curious as to what the signature airplane food of my home state would be.

Imagine my profound disappointment when I unlocked level one of New York and the helpful cartoon informed me that I would be making fucking pastrami sandwiches for my passengers. Pastrami. Sandwiches. On white bread. With half-moon cookies. Is this a fucking joke?

The greatest state on the eastern seaboard and we are fictitiously serving pastrami sandwiches in a free game? This is bullshit.

The offending meat circled in red

The offending meat circled in red
Screenshot: Nordcurrent UAB

Once I came down from the utter rage of having to slice and heat pastrami for 50 levels, I got wondering what I would choose to represent the food of New York. A New York strip steak? A cheesecake? Pizza? All of these things are incredibly good when they are made in New York (although I’m really being swayed by New Jersey pizza, sorry) but there is one food that is undoubtedly New York on a plate, or a foil wrapper.

Baconeggandcheese.

The humble baconeggandcheese, on a roll obviously, is New York’s greatest contribution to sandwiches since the dirty water dog. It doesn’t matter that neither of those things was invented in this state, it only matters that the state and city of New York perfected it. Who really even eats pastrami other than tourists walking up to Katz’s Deli and expecting a cinematic experience? Pastrami doesn’t even taste good.

The baconeggandcheese is perfect because it is iconic and flexible. When I stopped eating pork I simply swapped in some turkey bacon burnt to a crisp and boom, faconeggandcheese for breakfast a few times a week. There are even vegan variations on the baconeggandcheese, because you really just can’t be a breakfast spot in New York unless you are selling this sandwich.

I don’t know how I’m going to make it through the remainder of Airplane Chefs living the lie of serving pastrami sandwiches out of a cartoon version of JFK airport, but I suppose games are supposed to be more of an escape than a reflection of reality. But who the hell wants to escape with pastrami!?