Brett Smiley is a freelance writer and Asylum's Funfetti correspondent.

When I first laid my eyes on a McDonald's holiday pie (yesterday), I fell in love. But it was just a picture. So, with my belly yearning for Funfetti magic, I set out to find where I might locate this wondrous holiday pie.

I started with a grassroots approach. I called 15 McDonald's restaurants in the greater New York City area. "Huh?" they replied. "We have apple pies."

But I didn't want an apple pie; I wanted a caloric-disaster holiday pie, which looked like a combination of a Funfetti cake and a custard doughnut in the shape of a hot pocket.

With hunger as my guide, I called McDonald's customer service line.
A representative told me 85 percent of McDonald's restaurants are
franchises that decide individually whether to stock the holiday pie, so she has no way of locating the rare delicacy.

My quest now took me back to the Internet, where Yelp.com users ridiculed a like-minded pie hunter with cruel and misguided comments like "It looks like a piece of ashy oxidized turd stuffed with baby vomit." I sought guidance on Yahoo! Answers, where users in Mayfield, Ohio; Hardinsburg, Ky.; and Milan, Mich., claimed local McDonald's stocked the pies. I even found a Facebook group that professed its love for the pies.

But still I was denied the pie I craved, or any kind of resource to find them.

I turned next to a blogger named Mr. Inconspicuous, the author of an unflattering review of the pies who has unintentionally become an authority on the mysterious baked good. He pointed me to a greater Washington, D.C., area McDonald's. So I hit the phones again. "Huh?" they asked.

One restaurant in Arlington, Va., used to have them. The employee sensed my desperation. She offered an apple pie.

All signs led me to the sad realization that the holiday pie is a seasonal item, stocked only by a brilliant few franchise owners located mostly in the Midwest and South. But a lucky few of you out there may still be able to capture one of these pies.

If you can locate one, enjoy it first. And then let us know where you found out so we may live vicariously through you.