“And I ordered my war cold, too!”

Russia takes aim at McDonald’s burgers as U.S. ties worsen
By Maria Kiselyova and Olga Sichkar; Reuters; July 25, 2014
MOSCOW (Reuters) – “McDonald’s burgers and shakes may become the latest victims of worsening ties between Moscow and Washington after a Russian consumer watchdog agency accused the U.S. chain of sanitary violations…”
Why must people vent to restaurant workers about things beyond their control?

Why does a Mexican-style restaurant not allowing you to sit there make me suspicious?

How Tiny Is Too Tiny for a Restaurant?
Yahoo! News‎; Jul‎ ‎23‎, ‎2014
“Like to linger over your burrito? That probably won’t be an option at a new spate of takeout-style Chipotle restaurants that, according to a Monday announcement, will dispense with the seating options available at most of the chain’s current shops…”
Industry sources note that the chain has good reasons to save money.  It took a hit from the class action lawsuit in response to their line of “Montezuma’s Special Imported Water” beverages.

Boobies and Booming Business

Starbucks Praises Barista Who Defended Breastfeeding Mom
By Elise Solé, Shine Staff | Parenting – Tue, Jul 1, 2014

“After a mother in Ottawa, Canada, was scolded by a customer for nursing her baby inside a Starbucks and a male barista came to her aid, the coffee giant expressed support for its employee, saying he did the right thing.

“’We want everyone who comes to our stores to enjoy their visit and to be treated with dignity and respect,’ Louisa Girotto, director of public affairs at Starbucks Canada, tells Yahoo Shine. ‘We were very pleased with the customer service our partner offered the woman who was breastfeeding, and I will reach out to him directly’…”

The teen made some comments to a reporter from the independent press. “Dude, it was awesome! I finally get a chance to see some tittie action in real-life–not including my cousin when I was only 13–and some asshole is going to try to stop my right to see it?! Ain’t happenin’, bro.

“And now this Louise chick from corporate says she wants to ‘reach me directly’ and she’s calling me her ‘partner’? Fuck yeah! And like, she’s in charge of public affairs, so like I guess if we do it and stuff, we don’t got to hide it, right? I just hope she’s as hot as this MILF was.

“My hand’s been pretty sore since this happened. Wait, that came out wrong. I mean from all my buddies high-fiving me. Well, I mean, a little from the other thing, too.”

The Booger on the Wall Principle

My transition from teaching to waiting tables was gradual. When the latter became my sole means of income, I desperately sought a restaurant that paid better than the train wreck of a place I was currently attached to. I found employment at a casual fine dining establishment which proved far more lucrative than teaching about useless junk like the Aristotelian notion of the good life or Kant’s byzantine conception of ethics.

I had been a sloppy and ineffective waiter until the do-or-die direness of my economic predicament demanded that I manifest some mettle. While my intelligence, personality, and wit served me well at this place, I also faced the significant disadvantage of being a bearded, dirty white boy. My boss possessed a peculiar admixture of qualities. While a parsimonious, penny-pinching snob, she also had compassion for those less fortunate.

I don’t know how much shrewd calculation went into this, but hiring me doubled the manliness quotient in the front of the house, balancing out the flamboyant waiters, the generally attractive waitresses, and the Mexicans–some of them illegals–in the kitchen. I became a rather good waiter and made two good friends during my employment there.

The point of this post, as alluded to in the title, was a conspicuous anomaly that persisted for at least a month. In this fancy-pants restaurant, someone–hell, it could’ve been me–had wiped a booger on the wall about six inches above one of the two urinals in the restaurant’s only men’s room. The dullest Mexican there was the one tasked with cleaning the bathrooms. He couldn’t have not seen the bodily emission, but he just consistently let it slide–I mean, stick. He unwittingly set into motion a thought process that roughly half of all pissers surely underwent: when is someone going to wipe that damn thing off?

Moreover, two of the owner’s sons worked there and had obvious financial interests in the classiness of the restaurant. It would’ve been 100 times easier for one of them to just do it themselves, but I know they would have spent ten minutes finding the cleaner, instructing him to wipe it off, and then reprimanding him for being so lax. But they did nothing.

Instead, what transpired was a combination of diffusion of responsibility and a sense of playing chicken. I think we all shared this unspoken grotesque curiosity about how long it would take for the issue to be taken care of. How long would the offending object remain? We were all silently rooting for its longevity, tacitly expressing a deep-seated puerile “Fuck you” to the whole restaurant world in general and this place’s mismanagement and pretentiousness in particular. To be clear, this is obviously different from procrastinating on a serious matter, and it was not an arduous job by even the laziest and most squeamish standards.

I almost always showed up for work with a slight alcohol buzz, but sometimes I had a slight marijuana one going on as well. During one evening shift when both were in the risky zone, I tried telepathically communicating with the boss’s son, the second-in-command.

“Come on, Noah. You know about it, your brother Jacob knows about it. Every goddamn man here knows about it. I don’t care if you realize how buzzed I am right now, or if you know that I suspect your wife has a slight crush on me. Just admit that you’re on our team on one issue: long live the booger!”

Noah did not care for me all that much, and his next action may have indeed been demonstrative of my telepathic success.

“You’re up, Briana. Two in Four.”

I yielded a three dollar tip from the two old ladies he had assigned me to in Section Four, each of whom ordered a salad and a water. And they stayed for two hours.

Thigh or Breast Man?

KFC Chicken Corsage Being Sold Just in Time for Prom Season

Junk(ie) Food

Parents overdose on heroin at McDonald’s as kids, 5 and 8, play at restaurant’s PlayPlace: Outrage?

By John Luciew | The Patriot-News 
March 14, 2014

I’m outraged by this parental recklessness.  Those fast food play lands can be very unsafe.  This chain’s removal of the ball pits, prompted by the disappearance of 7-9 children every year, has not made the place safer. There are still the ongoing problems of fat kids getting stuck in the slides, haunted Grimace figures that come to life, and irate staff members who are awaken from their naps. 


Signs, Signs, Can’t You Read the Signs?

As someone with extensive restaurant experience, it troubles me to see signs that employees need reminders to wash their hands after using the facilities.  I would rather not eat at such establishments.  I saw a sign recently that reiterated, underneath the English version, the hygienic point in Braille.  I appreciate the good-hearted employer that would accommodate a disabled person.  Yet this notice especially bothered me, as the reader would have had to have been rubbing their hands along the walls to discern its meaning.

And it Will Be Cold that Day

Fast-food workers call for nationwide walkout Aug. 29

By  The Washington Post

Here’s how I see it unfolding:
–The call for a rise in the minimum wage to $15 an hour will be mistakenly lead to a call for every restaurant to have 15 pagers;
–The chant demanding paid vacation time will come out as “What do we want? 
“Time off to get laid! 
“When do we want it?
“On our lunch breaks!”;
–In attempting to voice safety concerns, the spokesman will complain about farting co-workers;
 –5% will show up late, 8% will leave early, and 6% will get the day wrong.
Note:  Since approximately 1/12th of my restaurant experience was in fast food, I can joke about such things.