Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Non-Buffalo Chicken, Drive Thrus and Retards (not the employees, real retards)

So, I decided I wanted to go out for dinner as opposed to eating in the Trough (dining facility). I didn't have to worry about anyone else's financial concerns, so I decided to go to a chicken place that is a favorite of mine, drive thru.

Before the story continues, I should say that I almost always order the same thing from this place. 10 piece buffalo chicken fingers, bleu cheese dressing instead of that ranch garbage and a large sweet iced tea. Well, in the past I've received everything from buffalo wings (usually equaling ten) to plain chicken fingers to plain chicken nuggets - you name it. Well, sometimes I like to think that I still have faith in the human race, so...

I pull up the squawk box and give 'em my order. They read it back perfectly. I get my total and think to myself, something's wrong (too low), but I continue, nonetheless. I figure I'll have my hay day at the window. Get to the pick up window, exchange cash, drink, etc. As Mr. Drive Thru is about to hand me my food, he asks if I ordered the 10 piece buffalo chicken fingers with Bleu Cheese dressing (a real hard order to screw up, you'd think). I said, yes sir, that's correct. He hands me the bag. Another happy customer served, so they think. As I put the bag on the passenger's seat, I notice that my nose isn't burning from the smell of buffalo. But, I trust Mr. Drive Thru, since that was the first time Mr./Ms. Drive Thru ever tried to confirm what I ordered right at the window. I figure this guy must know what he's doing. Besides, the weight of the bag was right, so I know I'm not the proud of owner of 10 tiny wings. I begin pulling away and start becoming more and more convinced that these chicken fingers haven't been bathed in buffalo.

Side note: The IQ of the local town population isn't quite on the positive side of the scale yet. And since I usually try to avoid as much contact as possible with the indigenous personnel, I quickly ruled out going inside to attempt to rectify the problem.

So, back to my room I head. Several times I think about turning around, but I really don't feel like dealing with them. Not to mention a few oddities that happened between there and here, I set the bag on the table. Pull out my box of chicken, pop the lid and there's 10 (I suppose, didn't count) completely naked pieces of breaded chicken staring at me. Thank God there were two packs of bleu cheese in there, though. So, I reluctantly plop into the chair. I start trying to figure out where my magic wand is so I can turn these vile little beings into the Dinner of Champions they should be.

Remember that training exercise I said I was going on over the weekend? Well, inside the MREs (Meals Read to Eat) they issue us are contained smaller packages with small things like salt, sugar, individual coffee packs, two chicklets, etc. Prior to going out, we "field strip" the MREs so we only have what we want & not everything they package with it. I field stripped all mine and left the rest of the stuff back here. Well, there is also this little precious gem of Tabasco sauce inside. They come in these little glass bottles that are about two inches tall (I'll have to post a picture some time; they're great). Well, my military ingenuity starts firing up. You can figure out the rest.

Now, to my point. How hard is it to push the button the says "Chicken Fingers" + Buffalo + 10? On the other end, how hard is it to read the black and green screen that says Chicken Fingers + Buffalo + 10?

This may sound mean at first, but it'll make sense in a minute or two.

Every morning at the Trough, my term of endearment for the dining facility here, they bring in these retarded kids to clean the tables and refill the napkin holders. (Yes, I thought the exact same thing: Exploitation of the mentally challenged!) I assume (hope) it is part of their therapy or something. Anyway, those kids work harder and do a better job than some of the (supposedly) non-retarded staff that works there. Why is it that a kid who isn't all there can do a significantly better job than someone more than twice his age who actually gets paid to do it? The employee volunteered to come work for the employer whereas the kid was brought here by the short bus (they really do come on a short bus). The employee had a choice as to where he or she applied for a job.

Yesterday morning one of the 'tards started freaking out about something. I have no idea what was going on, but he started... making... noise... that went on for the rest of the time I was in there. I don't mean the kid was mumbling or anything, I mean full on, full throttle moaning/yelling/noise. Ya know what the funny part was? It didn't bother me one bit. Why? Because he doesn't know any better. Yet, the paratard at the chicken place bothers me (simply by looking at the size of this post). Why? Because when a kid who doesn't have a fully developed brain can out perform you, something is desperately wrong. Your job is to make whatever that green and black screen says. There are directions laid out for you. Your job is to punch into the little cash register/computer whatever the person on the other end of the squawk box says. Some of those goofy things have pictures on them in addition to the word itself!

What is it about retarded people doing jobs better than "normal" people? While I was home during this past the summer, my dad and I were out for breakfast one morning when we noticed a retarded kid cleaning tables. I believe we were at a Denny's. I've never seen anyone clean tables like that guy. He was amazing. After we both observed him work, we started talking about how that guy worked harder than some of the people we know. How can people let a retarded person do a better job than them? Does anyone else see the problem with this? I don't say this against the retarded person, but against the pseudo-retard that is being out done. I must say, of those who are mentally challenged that I've seen work, on average, they do a much better job than the average person who fills their position. I really don't understand it. How can we let lazy people vote yet tell the retarded kid who gives 110% when he works that he can't vote or have a say in the country. I mean, I'm not up on all the specific voting restrictions or requirements, but I know that not all are allowed to vote.

This one time we were at Burger King. This was several years ago. I'm not sure if this dude was on coke, speed, retarded or just the kind of person that was always enthusiastic. Anyway, I've never seen someone so passionate about French fries. He made sure everyone knew the status of the French fries that were currently cooking. "30 seconds to hot fries." "15 seconds to hot fries." "10 seconds to hot fries." And he isn't saying this at a conversational tone. EVERYONE in the kitchen, if not the building, knows about the French fries. "Hot fries in 3... 2... 1..." And in unison with the timer alarm beginning to beep, "HOT FRIES!" He yanks the fries out of the fryer to drain, shakes 'em off, and throws them into the metal jobber where they're salted, then put into the containers and served. And this guy didn't do this once or twice. It was the same with every batch of fries and with everything he did. He was passionate about his job. He did his job well. My point in relating this story is that if someone can be that passionate about making French fries at Burger King, you'd think the rest of us can do our jobs at least to standard.