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Please Pull Forward

I’m telling on myself a little bit today, but it needs to be said.  For the most part, I encourage my family to eat healthy, wholesome, real food that includes one green thing at every meal. And before you ask, because my children already have, no, green Skittles, pickles and Mountain Dew do not count.  Anyway, sometimes I’m lazy, in a hurry or just weak of spirit and mind and we grab a fast food meal to eat in front of the TV.  If you’re judging me right now, then I concede that you’re a far better meal planner, mother, chef and all-around person than I am.  Now that we’ve got that out of the way, what I really want to talk about is the dreaded fast food drive-thru.

When did it become acceptable and expected that every single blasted time I order something at a drive-thru, I have to pull away from the window and wait for them to bring it out?  I can remember a time when this practice was a rare exception, only enacted if you had an unusually large order or if the restaurant (using the term loosely) was exceptionally busy.  Look, I’m not a monster.  If I’m waiting for four burgers and fries, then I will happily move out of the way so the dude behind me can get his shake and be on his way.  However, I take exception to this new practice of shooing me away from the window with every stinking order.

Point 1: Most drive-thru lanes aren’t that roomy.  Even if I pull up, there’s no way for any car behind me to get around me to leave.

Point 2: Oftentimes there’s not even anyone behind me.

Point 3: Once you do bring my food, I have lost all opportunity to check my order or request condiments at my convenience.  If I wanted to walk into the damn place, I would have done that in the beginning.

I know why they do it, and you probably do, too.  These transactions are timed.  Once the car pulls away from the drive-thru, they can complete the transaction.  That makes them look really, really fast, even though I’m sitting in my car with time to launch a full tirade about them to anyone who will listen while I wait for my food to arrive.  It’s annoying that they’re cheating like this, but it’s also just plain rude.  If I am the single, solitary customer at the drive-thru and you wave me away from the window, you’re basically saying, “Go away.  I don’t want to look at you anymore and I surely don’t want you to see me spit in your food.  I also don’t want to give you extra ketchup.”  Okay, I know most of them don’t spit in food, but I worry about it, since I don’t always have the most sparkling personality at the drive-thru.

Fast food customers, this is my battle cry.  Stop pulling away from the window!  We don’t have to.  We are paying customers and we have every right in the world to sit at that window and stare at the employees until we have food in hand, verified and condimented to our satisfaction.  As a matter of fact, I highly recommend the staring part, since this is exactly the kind of insubordination that invites spit burgers, but we must take that risk.  We must stand up for our rights.  The customer is king, and if the king wants to sit at the window, then the king will damn sure do it, regardless of how long it takes you to cook a burger.  Let’s put the “fast” back in “fast food.”  I’ll bet you a Whopper that they get your order done faster if you’re looking at them, because, as we know, they really just want you to go away.

  1. May 7, 2012 at 11:55 am

    I understand your point if you’re the only car in line, but if you’re not, even if it’s for 2 minutes, then everyone behind you is waiting an additional two minutes. The timer adds all this time, raising the average by quite a bit, and the employees get in trouble! It really has nothing to do with not wanting you to see us/us not wanting to look at you!

    • May 7, 2012 at 8:09 pm

      Thank you for providing a different point of view…but I must say, there’s seriously wrong with (management? industry standards?) something when the timer is there to measure how fast people move along rather than how fast their actual service is. It still leaves the customer feeling unwanted and annoyed. Sad that people actually get in trouble for not playing along with this nonsense. Thank you for reading and commenting, you’ve given me even more to think about.

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