Tuesday, September 06, 2005

We Miss You, Dave Thomas

We just got home from a Labor Day junket up North to see family and friends. The Bambina was a total Peach Pie for both legs of the flight. She was about 3 hours past her nap when we finally landed, so I thought I’d just jet past the Wendy's drive-thru to get her some chicken nuggets for her since our house fridge is embarrassingly empty.

Wow. I ordered one nuggets, one sprite, one diet coke, and one mandarin chicken salad with biggie fries. I received in my bag:
Two regular cokes
One nuggets
One grilled chicken sandwich
One biggie fries.

Again, WOW. You have got to WORK to get a 5-item order that wrong!

It’s sad, really. I have always loved Wendy’s, even back to the days when they had those long dangly bead curtains and the faux Victorian newsprint on the plastic tables. I always loved their food because is seemed like a tall step up from the McD/BK fast food offerings. {I remember freaking my friends out by telling them that chicken mcnuggets were made from chicken skin, beaks and penises. To this day I have yet to ascertain whether chickens do indeed have visible genitalia, but I just think the reference bolsters my claim in such a humorously gross way that I have decided to continue to repeat it without any kind of scientific corroboration. I hope I don't get sued like Oprah did...}

Anyway, my recent experiences with Wendy’s both here and on the West Coast have convinced me that without Dave Thomas, Wendy’s is a total train wreck. It used to rock, and now it reeks. The service at Wendy’s is so horrible that it absolutely has to be intentional, or else they are single-handedly blowing through every theory of statistical probability that the mathematical community has ever created. I have gone to Wendy’s 4 times in as many months and have yet to drive home with the right food. It is insane. And unless you check the bag really well, you are half way home or in your damn kitchen before you realize that you are toting around a freakin’ baked potato with cheese when you really wanted a nachos and cheese. The last time I drove back to get my order fixed, which they did with so little fanfare and with such little concern for speed that you just KNOW it happens all the time. Perhaps the employees are real nice, hardworking men and women. I don’t doubt that. But, people, please. *I* am a native speaker of English and would have trouble taking an order over that intercom. You’re gonna put two people from El Salvador on it and expect them to understand the myriad accents that populate the DC area? If that’s your game plan, then you are ASKING for a Biggie Customer Service Nightmare.

I sometimes feed my frustration with my incorrect order in the moment by imagining what their employment interview must go like:

Manager: Can you speak English?
Applicant: No.
Mgr: Great! Do you understand English when spoken over a 1980’s intercom system?
App: No.
Mgr: Great! When someone says “biggie fry” do you feel compelled to give them a small frosty instead?
App: What’s a frosty?
Mgr: Great! When can you start?!


S said...

My husband nearly woke up the kids laughing at this last night. He is the one who has to make the McDs run every time and order no onions for me and they repeat "no onions" and they put it on the order slip and they even put the special sticker on the wrapper...but every time: still onions.

Vigilante said...

S, try In-N-Out.

Whenever I ask for no salt, I get no salt.