Food service workers always have it rough, but especially so in the era of COVID. They have had to work extra shifts, long hours, and deliver meals when the restaurant may not be set up for deliveries. They do this all while dealing with stress(to put it nicely) from various customers. They, like all of us, need positive messages.
I just didn’t expect this one to come as it did.
This is extremely evident in fast food venues where drive-thru lanes are the only access to the restaurant. I have heard people shouting at the menu boards as they vent frustrations over food, speed or lack of both.
My favorite place to stop for something to drink or to purchase a snack for my husband, Randy, is McDonald’s. I am addicted to their Diet Coke. Anyone that knows me well, knows that I visit both franchises in my town daily. I know most of the workers and can often hear the frustration in their voices.
Whatever pay the workers receive for working the window or grill, it is not enough! They all could use raises. There are students, rising managers, disabled individuals, retired adults, and people branching out to get their first store. The abuse I have seen is unbelievable and should not be tolerated. They do tolerate the surly customers, though, and do it with a smile.
It’s that smile and reaching out to get to know their customers that is the focus of this story. Thanks to the new McDonald’s app, offering points for a code, they can address you by name.
On this occasion, no code was needed.
On top of feeling like death, Randy had to run to choir practice to play piano at the church. I remained in the car with Tiger and Jodie, our wonderful pups, trying to let the heated seats ease the pain in my back. Finally, Randy came out of practice and we headed to McDonald’s for beverages. I pulled up to the speaker, forgetting to look for the app code, and just gave my order.
What I heard next lifted my spirits and made my soul smile. Out of the speakers came, “Hi Sue! Got your order all ready for you.” It quickly materialized on the screen. “I didn’t even give you my code!”
“I knew it was you by the order, Sue.”
I practically squealed into the speaker, “You are the god of McDonald’s!”
He laughed and had me repeat it several times.
My husband and I laughed all the way to the window.
The rest of the staff were laughing by the time we got to the windows and I had to repeat it several more times. Especially with the manager standing nearby. Tyler, the Sue-anointed god of McDonald’s, handed us our drinks and we drove home laughing.
What Payton didn’t know that night was that he lifted my spirits enough to make my body feel a bit better. Although I was still in pain, that experience kept me laughing most of the night. Laughter really is the best medicine. If you can laugh through the pain, then things don’t feel so dire.
So, next time you go to McDonald’s in Freeport, look for the god of McDonald’s. He, and all the crews at both franchises in my town, will be serving the best tasting Diet Coke in town.
Need more positive messages for yourself? Here are some thoughts that might uplift the soul!
Sue Cook lives in Freeport, Illinois with her husband Randy and two dogs. Her passions include assistance dogs, rescue dogs, music, acting, theater, poetry, and Doctor Who. She’s been in both film and theater and is a regular cast member of the podcast Doctor Who’s Line is it….Anyway? Sue is an advocate for the use of Service Dogs to assist their disabled handlers to maintain their independence. Quigley’s Quest, her first children’s book, addresses how a dog becomes a Service Dog.