Okay, enough is enough. This whole thing has gotten way out of hand and I am sick of it.
This afternoon, I pulled into a McDonald’s Drive-Thru to get an iced coffee. As I waited to order–in front of the same speaker the woman in front of me had just ordered through–I hear something that sounds like this:
“Mwah mwah mwah mwah, mwah mwah mwah.” Yes, like the adults in Peanuts.
“I’m sorry?” say I.
“Mwah mwah mwah mwah, mwah mwah mwah,” says she.
“I don’t understand what you’re saying,” say I.
“Mway mwah mwah mwah next mwah mwah.”
“Next! She said next, Mom…I think she wants us to move up to the next speaker,” says my son.
Oh. There had already been a pre-recorded message asking me if I wanted something for a dollar, but what the hell? Slowly, I pulled up to the next speaker and waited. And waited.
“Hello?” I say into the speaker. Where did she go? I ask my son.
I looked at the woman in the car behind me. Was she…yes. Goddammit, the woman BEHIND me was ordering. I gave up and drove away.
Now, I understand that America is a melting pot, yadda, yadda, yadda. And that we’re supposed to welcome all immigrants with open arms. But come on; when an American can’t even order an iced coffee in New Jersey without problem–and this wasn’t the first time I’d had trouble–it’s time to reconsider who gets the job at the drive-thru.
Still thirsty and in need of my daily fix (with no Starbucks in sight, damn), I drove on to a Dunkin Donuts and ordered the coffee and a bagel and water for Mike. When we got the order, she’d forgotten the water. Or didn’t understand the question.
A few years ago, I bought something at a WaWa and realized that my change was incorrect. I told this to the clerk, who went into the register and gave me a different amount, still wrong. Not only did this new-to-the-nation guy not understand English, he didn’t understand money, yet here he was, manning the register! Imagine the little kids and seniors who were short-changed by this guy.
I know what you liberal, bleeding hearts are thinking (and believe me, I’m usually one of you): I need to be more patient, more understanding. After all, this is the land of the immigrant…blah, blah, blah.
Fuck that. This is America, and I don’t think it should be so hard for us born-and-bred to order a goddamn iced coffee, or get a water, or receive the correct change. And I’m not blaming the workers, I’m blaming the management, or the government, or whoever says that we should be putting second-language speakers in drive through windows and at cash registers if they don’t have command of the language.
Life is hard. Getting coffee should be easy. Just sayin’.