A young professional’s take on the trials and tribulations of everyday life in New York City.

By Nina Pajak

Here is my favorite story of yesterday:

Martin Kessman Sues White Castle, Says Booths Are Too Small At Nanuet Restaurant

So this guy weighs 290 lbs, and he feels it is discriminatory of White Castle to have booths that don’t fit his ostensibly expansive frame. This being predicated on the idea that obesity is a disability. He has apparently been eating White Castle burgers for 50+ years and feel they owe him more comfortable seating.

See Also: NYC’s Best Burgers | NYC’s Best French Fries

You can easily make a lot of cracks about this. He shouldn’t be eating at White Castle if he weighs 290 lbs, being fat isn’t a disability, etcetera, etcetera. I see it. I get it. Really, this whole lawsuit feels a little degrading to me, and I can’t imagine why a person of sound mind would bring this type of obvious ridicule and criticism upon himself for an issue that’s altogether pretty unimportant. I mean, dude. Eat the burgers in your car or at home. What 64-year-old stockbroker wants to hang around a White Castle in Nanuet anyway?

Be that as it may, I can’t help but feel like deep, deep down, below the layers of frivolity, self-imposed humiliation, and shameless litigiousness, there is a teensy-weensy beef patty of truth to be examined in this claim (with melted cheese on top).

White Castle, as everyone knows, is not exactly a health food restaurant. They sell tiny burgers which may be deposited down one’s gullet in a single bite in quick succession, as in the manner of Jughead Jones or a dolphin receiving a series of mackerels after performing a trick. One of their featured menu items is a “crave case,” which is thirty burgers packaged in a cardboard briefcase. You know, for the busy businessman on the go. Very serious and important hamburger business to attend to. Buy! Sell! Sell sell sell! More pickles! Francine, take a memo: Hamburgers! Please advise. Dictated but not read.

And here we have Mr. Kessman, a loyal White Castle patron since he was around twelve years old. Is it any wonder he’s a generously-proportioned gentleman now? I’m not suggesting it’s White Castle’s fault or responsibility that this man has chosen a life of beef-filled briefcases, but it certainly can’t come as a surprise to the chain that their clientele might be on the portly side. And if they want to encourage lifelong consumption and devotion to their brand, they really ought to be prepared for this type of complaint. The more burgers they sell, the more accommodating their seating should be.

Basically, it’s a simple equation:

ninas burger equation Nina In New York: White Castle Way Too Small For People Who Like To Eat White Castle Food

Seems simple enough to me, but I never was very good at math. That’s why I could never make it into the hamburger game—too many excel spreadsheets.


Dear Readers: While I am rarely at a loss for words, I’m always grateful for column ideas. Please feel free to e-mail me your suggestions.

Nina Pajak is a writer and publishing professional living with her husband on the Upper West Side.

The Nina Archives:

Buon Giorno!

My 9/11 Memory

Give Us A Brake

I Have A Thumb Problem

Watch & Listen LIVE