Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.

You go to McDonald's because you can't be bothered to cook.

You go to McDonald's because it's convenient and filling and keeps the kids quiet for at least 20 minutes.

Sometimes, you even go to McDonald's because you're craving one of its signature menu items, like the decadent fries or the dainty apple pie.

It's only on very rare occasions, though, that you find yourself at your favorite burger chain in the middle of the night.

That's because you're not a truck driver, police officer, firefighter, serial clubber or college student.

They, however, are (likely) far more important to the continued functioning of society than you are.

Well, some of them.

And they're now having to face severe disruption to their late-night, early-morning sustenance habits.

You see, as Business Insider reports, McDonald's has decided to pare down its late-night menu.

Gone will be 2 a.m specials such as the Filet-O-Fish. Oh, pish.

Say farewell, night owls, to the Buttermilk-Crispy-Chicken Sandwiches. Adios to Snack Wraps and Bagel Sandwiches.

And try getting a Signature Crafted delights such as the Mushroom and Swiss Burger and the Bacon Smokehouse Burger -- or, perish the idea, the Double Bacon Smokehouse Burger -- between midnight and 5 a.m. from April 30. 

A bleary-eyes McDonald's employee will look upon you with pity, should you expect these to be available.

They will then try and sell you on something else.

I did enjoy the burger chain's own selling of this new plan: 

We'll be simplifying what's served after midnight so customers can get the most popular favorites as fast as possible.

Oh, the sleight of mouth there.

As if the late-night Filet-O-Fishers were slowing down the Big Mac-ers. Because the fish had to be caught.

It's clear, of course, that this is a cost-cutting measure. 

It may well be that these items didn't sell so well. I wonder, though, whether those who regularly require nourishment when the majority of us are asleep might resent suddenly being offered a more limited menu.

Will they be tempted toward Taco Bell and its Crunchwrap Supreme? Will they suddenly get a hankering for Beer Cheese Bacon Fries at Carl's Jr./Hardee's?

When you're in a low-margin, high volume business, every move you make could have wonderful or dire consequences.

McDonald's likely believes it has the data on its side. It believes that it can persuade middle-of-the-night Filet-O-Fishers to become Big Mac-ers. 

But what if it can't? Will there be a people's revolt?

Let's face it, the middle-of-the-night fast-food gobblers are an influential crowd.

Published on: Apr 9, 2019
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.