June 11, 2012


I must say that I thoroughly enjoy life when a blog entry practically writes itself when a little episode unfolds right in front of me. It’s these little things that make me smile.

I walked into the local Dunkin’ Donuts for my daily lunch-time iced tea. A good share of the time my iced tea will already be poured and waiting for me. People know who I am and therefore respond accordingly. This pleases me. With it being Monday, I wasn’t overly surprised when my iced tea was not waiting for me. Like most folks on Monday, the staff seem to be slightly off-kilter on the first day of the work week.

I stood at the register for a few minutes when one of the more important ladies behind the counter peaked around from the drive thru shoot and said, “we’ll be right with you, hun.” They always call me ‘hun’ at this particular Dunkin’ Donuts. I don’t know why they do this, but I’m thankful that they at least acknowledge my presence, because at the Dunkin’ Donuts closest to home we are happy if the change isn’t airborne when we get it.

There were three people working the store. One in drive thru, one assisting drive thru (who apparently was also working the counter) and one in food assembly. The manager was wandering around with two six foot fluorescent lightbulbs. I kind of thought of him to be like Fred Mertz carrying the plant across the stage repeatedly while Ethel sang for her hometown in New Mexico. He’d walk by with the fluorescent bulbs, then he’d walk the other way with the bulbs. I felt like I should be singing “Short’nin Bread.”

As people began stacking up behind me (well, not literally stacking up, that’d be silly and rather intimate for Dunkin’ Donuts), the girl with assistive drive thru skills zoomed over to the counter, gave me a wild-eyed look and said “We are brewing more iced tea!” Apparently they had blown through the day’s worth of iced tea by noon and this was creating chaos. I said, “no worries” (because after all, I am Australian[?]) and she rang me up, successfully swiped my DD card on the third try after completely missing the register the first two times and then told me it’d be right up. The drive thru girl screamed, “I’m making it!!” and the manager walked by with the fluorescent bulbs.

I sat in a booth closest to the Food Receiving Window and waited patiently. The woman that had been behind me at the counter placed her order after asking, “Why don’t you tell me about today’s specials?”

Honestly, I didn’t find this surprising because it was then that I noticed that the woman had her wig on backwards. The poor wig looked like it had been run through a Frigidaire Wash ‘n Wear cycle (that old washing machine with the bouncing agitator) and flung onto her head like the mop it might have really been. The part/swirly part was up near her forehead. The flipping bangs caressed her neck. It was rather disconcerting.

The girl didn’t call her hun but told her about a lovely ham sandwich made on a croissant.

It was at this moment that the manager walked by with the two fluorescent bulbs and then the drive thru girl flung the brewing iced tea into the Official Iced Tea Machine. She then banged some keys on the register closest to the drive thru window. The Food Assembly Person looked at the screen and started assembling a sandwich. I could tell that it was a roast beef sandwich because she took out the meat wrapped in plastic that was marked with larger, helvetica letters: “ROAST BEEF”.

Chaos was occurring at the counter where the woman with the flipped wig was asking about the freshness of the donuts. She wasn’t being called “hun”. She was being glared at.

The manager walked by with two fluorescent tubes.

It was then that the drive thru came tearing out of her nook and made a honking noise at the Food Assembly Person. “The roast beef sandwich is tuna!” This pissed off the Food Assembly Person because she had discarded the ROAST BEEF lettered roast beef and had assembled the sandwich. The drive thru girl grabbed a bag and went shooting back into her nook, where the Food Assembly Person yelled, “don’t give it to them it’s not tuna!”

The manager walked by with THREE fluorescent tubes.

The girl that no longer used “hun” got the woman with the backwards wig all settled in with a regular coffee and came racing across the kitchen area to straighten out the Great Tuna-Roast Beef Debacle of 2012 where Drive Thru Assembly girl screamed “YOU WANT LEMON!” I figured out that she was directing that declaration at me, so I bellowed “YES!” as loudly as I could, which made the woman with the wig on backwards flinch a little bit but it got my point across.

The manager walked by with one fluorescent tube.

The girl that was no longer using hun came racing over to the Food Receiving Window with my freshly brewed iced tea.

I put a straw in it and left.