5.13.2008

Appetite for Disgusting

We had a bit of rain here on Monday, along with some wind. I wouldn't have minded had I gone in to work, but I'd extended my weekend both to use up a vacation day and enjoy the nice Spring weather I should have enjoyed over the weekend. Still, when the mist gave way to clouds and wind only, I didn't let that stop me from taking my camera on a “miniature vacation”.

Photos will be forthcoming tomorrow, as every Wednesday here at the Nexus. My little trip served to get me out of my room and regain some measure of sanity, but it was missing something. I wasn't hungry exactly, but I was craving some kind of snack. For it to feel more like a real vacation, I wanted something unhealthy that I haven't indulged in for some time. According to my warped logic, this meant either McDonald's or Taco Bell. Like George Costanza, my every instinct is wrong. Unfortunately, I can't simply counter this tendency by choosing the opposite as both options often lead to different types of misfortune. In any case, I chose the arches this time, craving an apple pie.

This was indeed an adventure in my sad little life, a trip to an out-of-the-way Mickey D's in a quiet coastal community. Studying the menu while the only other customer in line ahead of me placed his order, my apple pie order grew into two pies(only $1!) and a full-blown meal with fries, soda(so much for my caffeine ban) and a new Southern style chicken sandwich. I'd later learn that “Southern style” meant a single triangle of chicken on a plain roll, topped with 2 pickles and no condiments of any kind.

The manager, the only one working the counter, took my order while the guy ahead of me still waited. I handed him a twenty dollar bill which he took, put in the register, then got distracted helping the other workers with the drive-in orders. The customer ahead of me sighed while they raced back and forth filling bags. At one point, the manager took a drink of water then, once off to the side of the counter, spit it out. The wall obscured where the liquid landed, and I pray there was a sink there. The customers at the drive-thru window probably had a better view, but they were looking ahead. I nearly lost my appetite as the manager wiped his chin, then reached into an ice bucket with the same hand to fill a customer's cup. I really should have asked for a refund at this point, but my craving and my embarrassment over public confrontations won out.

Finally he got back to the register and finished the first order, noticing his cash drawer was still open and I was still there with my open wallet. “I'll get your change in a minute sir...” he said, heading in the back for more bills. As the other girls began loading my food on to a tray, I saw him grab a cup and head for that ice bucket. “NO ICE!!” I screamed, startling him. “But...Dr Pepper....yes?” asked the bewildered young man. “Yes, Dr Pepper, no ice.”

Sitting in the back by a window with some nice plants, I tried not to think about what I'd seen. Chances are, the things I don't see in any restaurant behind-the-scenes are infinitely worse. The apple pies and trademark fries were some comfort after the disappointing no frills sandwich, but I doubt I'll be back to that particular establishment, so long as I remember. My appetite may someday lead to my destruction, but now that this “vacation” is over and I'll be getting back into my normal work routine, I'm looking forward to deli food once more and the appearance of sanitary conditions through plastic gloves, even though those protect only the food preparers.

My friends once had the misfortune of seeing me pick up a Burger King fry and eat it after it fell off my tray on to the table. I acted quickly and without thinking. Myth of the five second rule aside, I suppose that was more disgusting than eating in the McDonald's with the expectorating manager. What say you all?

4 Comments:

Blogger Lyndon said...

I think I'm going to be brown bagging my lunch this week. I think you frightened my desire for fast food, right out of me! Eek...

5/13/2008 12:54 AM  
Blogger b13 said...

Ugh...Ewwwww...and ARRRRGGGGHHH!

5/13/2008 12:55 AM  
Anonymous Scott said...

"Southern style" means that they're ripping off Chick-fil-a a soutthern chicken sandwich chain. They serve their sammies nekkid (save for a pickle) because the frahed-chickun is thayat durn gud.

5/13/2008 1:44 PM  
Blogger MCF said...

See, I would never know that. I'm not sure I would describe the fleshy, textureless triangle as "Frahed Chickun" either. It was kind of like a big big McNugget. The McChicken and the Chicken strips are much better.

10 years ago I wouldn't have minded a plain sandwich, but now I feel like something is missing without lettuce, tomato, and some kind of condiment or dressing.

5/13/2008 7:03 PM  

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