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If you haven’t read Part 1 of the Johnny Betts vs. Fast Food Employees saga then go read it now so you can have the full context. In Part 1 I detail a frustrating experience I had at a fast food establishment that could have likely been avoided if the employee had received a little more extensive training. Welp, while my article mainly garnered worldwide praise and approval, there was at least one detractor. We will call her “Kit Kat” which will be denoted as “KK” below. The following is the dialogue we exchanged…
KK: I have to say, I was disappointed by your article. Did you truly base it, and the assumption you made about all fast food employees in it, on just this one encounter?
Me: First of all, it is not based on just that one encounter. That encounter is what pushed me into saying something. I’m usually VERY patient with fast food employees. In most cases they’re young and inexperienced and I try to give them the benefit of the doubt. But I have had SEVERAL similar problems at certain fast food places. But I never claimed that this experience reflected ALL fast food employees.
KK: I certainly hope not, as if you were an actual reporter, your story would never be deemed credible enough for publication.
Me: But on my website I deem what’s credible for publication. If I were working for a newspaper then I’d play by their rules. Besides, I’m much more than an “actual reporter.”
KK: As a fast-food worker, I spend a lot of time dealing with people who come in assuming I’m stupid before they even set eyes on me, just because they read articles like yours and hear the common stereotypes.
Me: Then shame on them. I never walk in assuming the employees are stupid. I form my opinion AFTER the experience is over.
KK: First of all, double cheeseburgers do not even come with mayo on them, so I don’t even know where you came up with that….
Me: See, that’s the problem. I once ordered, “two triple cheeseburgers please” (under the assumption that there would be no mayo) and that’s all I said. What happened? One of the burgers had mayo on it! I don’t know how it got on there because I always assumed they only came with ketchup. So you can see why I now feel I must specify exactly what needs to be on there.
KK: And trust me, confusing orders are flustering [sic] enough without customers being rude. And you can bet that there are just plenty of stupid customers who come through my door/drive-thru.
Me: I don’t deny that you confront many stupid customers. There have been plenty of times where the customers in front of me have caused my delay. But I’m never rude, so I don’t expect to be told “we can’t work around this.”
KK: So don’t assume that all fast-food workers are stupid, or that all customers are saints.
Me: Trust me; I don’t. And nowhere in my article will you see a claim to either of those points. If an employee gets my order right then wonderful! But if they give me the total opposite of what I ordered then I have a right to be less than satisfied.
KK: I think that people like you should have to work in a fast food restaurant for at least a week. A month or more would probably be better, and even then you will not have seen it all.
Me: I don’t have to see it all. I worked my rear end off in college so that I could avoid a minimum wage life. Fast food employees have a job to do and they should do it well. Mistakes will happen, but there are plenty of mistakes that are avoidable. Maybe “people like you” should be given bad service for a month so that you will see what I’m talking about.
KK: Try wearing a hot uniform and standing over a grill or fry bin on a 95 degree day, being on your feet for eight hours at minimum wage, running during meal rushes, serving a bunch of self-righteous jerks who don’t want to wait for more than approximately 2.5 seconds and would like to believe that you must have the IQ of a piece of carpet lint just because you work fast food.
Me: That’s the way it goes. It’s all part of the job description. I didn’t say it was the best job in the world, but a job is a job and keeping errors to a minimum is always the goal. If I order a burger with mayo and I get a burger with mustard and ketchup but NO mayo then the employee didn’t do his or her job correctly, and he or she should be held accountable. So I either have to live with the order or I have to spend an extra 5 minutes trying to get my order corrected. I’m sorry, but that extra five minutes is something I can be unhappy about spending. It’s called “fast” food for a reason. Well, at least it should be.
So did I ever hear from ol’ Kit Kat again? Actually, I did. To my surprise she apologized for the tone of her initial response and admitted that once her emotions subsided, she understood my point.
Helping people see the truth and the errors of their ways… it’s what I do.