sine nomine (sine) wrote in bad_service,
sine nomine

fortunately for him, we don't have one

background: today at work we heard a couple of sonic booms. about 15 minutes after that i went to the nearby safeway to get a sandwich. i gave my order to the deli guy, and he started making it:

(stare at instructions for several seconds)
(set down bread)
(stare at instructions for several seconds)
(put sauce on bread)
(stare at instructions for several seconds)
(put chicken on sauce)

he seemed a bit nervous and i figured he was new, so i tried to make conversation.

me: did you guys hear the sonic boom?

him: my co-workers did, but i don't know what that was about.

me: one of my co-workers looked it up. obama is in town today and someone violated the restricted airspace, so they sent f-15s in and they made the boom.

him: obama's in town?

me: yeah, some kind of campaign event for patty murray.

him: (pause) are you for obama?

me: yeah. i live in seattle; i can't help it. (this was a joke, and i laughed as i said it. i work in a burb that's much more conservative than seattle)

him: (pause) i'm not in favor a having a muslim president.

me: um, he's actually a christian.

he gave me a look but didn't respond and i spent the rest of the wait awkwardly playing with my shiny new phone.

it was pretty minor but annoying nonetheless, and after i tried to eat my sandwich (it was horrible, all greasy and bleah) i stopped by the customer service desk to mention it to someone. i dunno; you could say that i'm the one who brought up politics, but i really was just trying to talk about the sonic booms.

i emphasized to the assistant manager person that i wasn't really that stressed about it but that they might want to say something to him about talking politics with customers unless he knows them. she was very pleasant, smiling and nodding, but she was saying things like, "yeah, we should be careful not to have opinions" and "we should stay robotic." i was kind of "bwuh?" and now i'm embarrassed and wondering if maybe it was a dumb idea to have said anything at all. if it hadn't felt so uncomfortable, i probably wouldn't have.
Tags: **religious discrimination, deli/sandwich shop, see what happens when you speak up
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