Don’t Drive Fast(food)

, | Everett, WA, USA | Bizarre, Food & Drink

Me: “Hi, would you like to try [New Sandwich we are promoting] today?”

Customer: “No thanks, I’m driving.”

It’s Oui-Si To Understand

| Minneapolis, MN, USA | Food & Drink, Language & Words

Customer: “I want to order something off the menu, but everything is really hard to say and I don’t speak Spanish.”

(We’re a French restaurant, with the word ‘French’ in our name.)

Gramps Is Smiling On You This Day

| Tartu, Estonia | Awesome Customers, Awesome Workers

(A very elderly man with flowers on his walker comes in and orders his food. I take a lot of effort to make sure he gets exactly what he wants because he reminds me of my great-grandpa, who has just passed away. After making his food, I help him find a spot for it in this basket on the walker. As he walks to the door I walk to go back to my register but I realize the door will be too heavy. I run to the door and open it for him.)

Customer: *with a smile that reminds me just of Gramps* “That is the nicest thing you could ever do for me.”

Me: “It’s my pleasure, sir.”

(And that moment, Lady and Gents, made my job have some real meaning for the first time.)

Holy Guacamole, Get Off The Phone!

, | College Station, TX, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink

(I’m a customer in line at a fast food restaurant that makes burritos. I am behind a customer in line who is talking on his cell phone, not acknowledging the employee trying to take his order and holding up the whole line. There are two employees making the food, the first one putting the hot ingredients into the orders and the other handling the cold. The first employee is smiling and being patient with the customer on the phone, but I can tell it’s difficult.)

Employee #1: “Sir, what type of beans—”

Customer: *to phone* “Hang on, this guy is asking me something.” *he looks up, annoyed* “What?”

Employee #1: “Black or pinto beans, sir?”

Customer: “Ugh, black. So anyway—” *he launches back into the conversation with the person on the phone*

Employee #1: “The meat, sir? Sir, what type of meat would you like? Excuse me, sir?”

(The employee waves to catch the man’s attention, but he completely turns his back to him. The employee looks taken aback, but leaves the customer’s unfinished burrito where it is on the line and comes back to me, smiling as best he can.)

Employee #1: “All right, then. Hi, what can I do for you?”

Me: Hi. I’ll have a bowl for here: white rice, veggies, no beans, steak, please.”

(I catch Employee #1’s eye, point to the guy in front of me, mimic putting a telephone to my ear, and do a ‘what the h***?’ expression. He laughs, shrugs in a resigned sort of way, puts my order together efficiently, and moves on to the next customer. Meanwhile, Employee #2 has completely cleaned out all the customers in front of the phone guy, and brought his meatless burrito up into the area of the line with cold ingredients. The phone guy finally turns back around.)

Employee #2: “Vegetarian burrito, sir? Would you like any mild, medium, or hot salsa?”

Customer: “Chicken.”

(Employee #2 quickly reaches over to scoop out a portion of chicken, even though it’s on Employee #1’s area of the line.)

Employee #2: “Yes, sir. Mild, medium, or hot salsa? Maybe some corn or sour cream?”

Customer: “CHICKEN!”

(I swear I can see Employee #2’s eye twitch, but she keeps smiling as the chicken scoop makes it to the burrito.)

Employee #2: “Yes, sir! Would you like any salsa today?”

Customer: *into the phone* “Ugh, hold on again.” *slowly and loudly, to [Employee #2]* “CHIIIICKEEEEEN.”

(At this point Employee #1’s side of the line is totally full of customers’ orders waiting to move on to Employee #2’s area, and Employee #1 cannot physically fit any more orders in the line to get them started. More people come in, and the line’s getting halfway to the door. I have had enough.)

Me: “Excuse me? If you were paying attention, you’d see she got your chicken already. Do you want mild, medium, or hot salsa?”

Customer: “What? Who do you think you are?”

Me: “I’m the first in a long line of people who wants you to get off your phone and finish your order already.”

Customer Behind Me: “Seriously!”

Me: “Mild, medium, hot. Pick.”

Customer: “Wh- uh, medium.”

Me: “Corn, sour cream, cheese.”

Customer: “Sour cream and cheese, and uh, guacamole, but—”

Me: *instinctively, without even thinking about it* “It’s going to cost extra; is that okay?”

(The employees all laugh.)

Employee #2: “That’s my line!”

(The flustered customer finally finished up. I went back and finished off my order, and I got it for free!)

Driving Through The Line

, | IN, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink

(I am working at the drive-thru and our customer traffic is far higher than usual. A vehicle drives up to the pick-up window. It’s a large white fleet van for an HVAC contractor, and the driver is wearing matching overalls. I read his order from the monitor.)

Me: “That’ll be [amount], please.”

Customer: “I haven’t ordered yet.”

Me: “You didn’t order [items]?”

Customer: “No.”

Me: “Then why are you in line?”

Customer: “I cut in line. I want you to take my order now.”

Me: “Sir, that’s not fair to the many vehicles in line behind you. Please get in line and order like everyone else.”

Customer: “I’m f**** here right f**** now, and you’re gonna take my f***** order!”

Me: *pointing at headset* “I can’t take your order unless you use the radio unit by the menu at the start of the line.”

Customer: “I wanna talk to your manager!”

(My manager had been listening in on the other headset, and was already at the window.)

Manager: “How can I help you?”

Customer: “This f***** won’t take my order!”

Manager: “I will take and fill your order personally, but only after you personally explain to all the cars in line behind you why they have to wait an extra fifteen minutes because of you.”

(The customer launched into a hysteric stream of profanity and drove away. My manager was already dialing the HVAC contractor’s phone number written on the side of the customer’s van. The HVAC contractor’s boss assured us that a stern reprimand would be in order.)

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