/Begin random thoughts.

I freely admit there are things that I do not understand. Today, let’s look at fast food restaurants. For example – what’s with the ‘end of the drive thru’ garbage can?

I mean, who thought, when designing a fast food restaurants drive-thru, “You know… there’s just something not quite right. It needs something. *taps lip thoughtfully, then snaps fingers* Ah! I know – it needs a garbage can right there at the end!”? Did they expect that you would have finished all of your food by the time you went the 30 or so feet from the window to the end of the drive and, therefore, would need a garbage can?

And have you noticed – they’re almost always full – which blows my mind. Obviously, that drive-thru designer was onto something. Or maybe we just like to throw stuff away. They have the little scoop neck that stretches out to your car, like a little tunnel – and it’s packed. Usually with bags from other fast food restaurants. Do people just have tons of these bags in their cars waiting to be thrown away as they are leaving the next drive-thru they visit?

Which brings me to another thing I don’t understand – eating in your car in the parking lot of the fast food restaurant. Okay, so – here’s the scenario: You are hungry, you want a burger or a taco or something from your favorite fast food place. You head over and pull through the drive-thru, order your food, pay, pull around and… Park.

Now you sit there and eat your food.

Um. Why not just go inside? There’s a climate controlled building just a few feet away from you, yet you’re sitting there with the window down eating in your car. Why? Does the restaurant’s dining area have cooties? Are you afraid of Zombie attack? Do Randal and Dante work there and you’re afraid they’re going to pick on you? What’s up?!

Another thing – the napkin/condiment ratio to food. There doesn’t seem to be any science to it.

I’ve gone through the drive-thru at Burger King, ordered a Whopper value meal and was asked, “Do you want ketchup with that?” to which I answered, “Yes, please!” Get my food, look in the bag and I have enough ketchup (or catsup, if you prefer) to build a red, ketchupy river upon which I could float on my Whopper for hours and hours and all the way down to New Orleans for some gumbo…

Mmmm. Gumbo.

On the flip side, I have, at times, rewarded helpers (when moving, for example) with food from somewhere and have received one packet of this or that and a single napkin despite having ordered enough food for a small army.

What gives?

I remember going to Long John Silvers during my Long John Silvers phase (which has been over for several years now.  Argh.) and buying the family pack because I had several people at my place looking to be fed. A dozen pieces of fish, slaw, taters, hush puppies and – 1 packet of tarter sauce. Seriously? Is that crap so expensive you can only hand out 1 per family meal?

Not to mention soda or pop or soda pop.  Cola. 32 oz of caffeinated & carbonated liquid included with most value meal orders. Only, you don’t really get 32 oz. You get like 4 oz lightly drizzled atop a cup packed so tight with ice you could throw it at a window and crack it, if not break it outright.  Pop ice?  Icee pop?  Slushie cola?

This I actually know a little bit about. I used to work for my Uncle, who sold some restaurant equipment wholesale, including commercial ice systems and soda dispensers. One of the selling points sales people used when trying to push these ice systems (the machines that produce the ice they put in your little cups when you order) is the size and shape of the ice cube the machines produce, and the density. So, in other words, how well they fill the cup. The more ice in the cup, the less pop – and that means they make more money because they can stretch a ‘bag’ of syrup further (there’s this whole mixture process…), selling more cups per ‘bag’ (again, the whole mixture process) which means their profit per ‘bag’ is higher.

All thanks to ice.

Who’da thunk it?

/End random thoughts.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled stuff.

~P

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