Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Not So Fast Food

I’m ashamed to say I’ve spent so much time in the drive-thru lane at fast food restaurants that I’ve caught onto the rhythms of them. I’ve learned some subtle, yet surefire cues that a transaction in front of you has gone horribly awry. I’m sharing these tips with you in hopes you can spot them, too. Armed with this information, you can successfully shift into neutral and turn up the radio. Or, if you see several of these traps in the same trip, you may want to commit the most egregious offense of all in fast food land, and speed away without your order.

So, without further adieu, here are 10 tips that your fast-food jaunt is becoming a journey, along with a forecast of expected delays.

Tip 1: The person in front of you has extended his or her head out the car window. This is a sign communication has broken down. Add two minutes.

Tip 2: Person in front of you gets his or her food from the window, but refuses to pull away. This is a burger bookkeeper. It requires a honking horn and a delay of three minutes.

Tip 3: The person in front of you has extended his or her arm out the window. This is not as serious as Tip 1 by itself, resulting in a delay of only about a minute. However, when accompanied by an extended head, can be a serious situation. Add five minutes.

Tip 4: Person in front of you is on his or her cell phone. This is the rare occasion where stupid meets incompetence. Add six minutes.

Tip 5: There is a Buick LeSabre or Crown Victoria in front of you. This person may be one of the first of the billions served. Add seven minutes.

Tip 6: There are now multiple heads and arms out both the driver’s and passenger’s windows. Add eight minutes.

Tip 7: Attendant asks you to repeat your order or repeats your order back to you incorrectly. Count on a loss of nine minutes … and one cheeseburger.

Tip 8: Same as tip 7, but in an accent you’ve never heard before. Prepare for a loss of two cheeseburgers and 12 minutes.

Tip 9: The person in front of you makes it to the window, gets his or her food and then promptly returns it to the attendant. This is the most serious situation you will encounter without requiring police intervention. Call your loved ones and expect a 15-minute delay.

Tip 10: The back-up lights of the vehicle in front of you are activated. Prepare for impact, a police report and a delay of an hour or better.

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