earthendenim (earthendenim) wrote in bad_service,
earthendenim
earthendenim
bad_service

Am I overreacting?

I know this is about the 3rd post I've entered about bad fast food service, but today was the first time my experience transcended the usual impatience and frustration to actual horror and embarrassment. I'd like you, the community, to tell me if you find the following service acceptable or just downright bad. I will state at the outset that I was a somewhat sucky customer at one point (by way of being irritable and short after a long wait), but I'd like to see if the employee's reaction was justified, or what.



I went to McDonalds, wanting to grab lunch on my way to run errands (I had a limited time frame, not super-short or I wouldn't have stopped, but I had to get back to campus for class by a certain time). I pulled up, saw that there were two cars waiting to order ahead of me (with about 3-4 more ahead of them already ordered and at the windows) and thought I'd have a reasonable wait time--at this point, I'm thinking up to 8 minutes or so...

As you can guess, the wait time was interminable--it was nearly 20 minutes from the time I pulled in until I finally left. We'd move, then 3-4 minutes later move again. It was also raining fairly hard, and so I was trying not to have my window open except for when I needed to order and pay (there were no awnings), but I had to keep waiting until they got around to me. Also, once someone else pulled in behind me, I had no physical vehicular option to leave.

So when I finally arrived at the window, the combination of a 16-minute wait in line, errands to run, rain splashing in, and general hunger resulted in my being a bit short and rude: The employee at the window held out my bag, which I took rather abruptly. This may be inexcusable and sucky, but what happened next absolutely boggles my mind.

I turned back from placing the bag on my passenger seat to see the employee staring at me incredulously. She whined, "why would you snap a bag from me like that??!?"

After looking back at her for a moment with the requisite eyebrow raised (because I've taken bags in this manner, countless times, from employees all too happy to have me on my way and their drive-thru time shortened), I said (kind of hurriedly), "Hey, I'm sorry, but I'm being rained on, I'm trying to get somewhere, and you guys have been kind of slow...look, could you just give me my drink so I can get out of here?" (Please note that while I was rude by for grabbing the bag the way I did, I backpedalled, apologized, and never once called her names, raised my voice, etc.)

She said, "No. I'm not serving you," and backed away from the window like I might bite her, bitching at the top of her lungs that she wasn't going to serve "that girl". About 3 other employees are now peering curiously toward the window, as well as some counter customers and one woman (who I believe was a manager) who told the employee to go back and hand me my drink. The manager looked out at me (past the drink which was sitting, out of my reach, on their inside counter), and I called in, as politely as I could under the circumstances, "I'd just like my drink so I can go, please."

Now, while I don't think my rudeness justified this reaction, I can sort of get with it. I was rude, and I suppose if she considers that reason not to serve me, that's between her and the manager.

The employee came tentatively back to the window and placed my drink on the veeeeery edge of the window ledge and backed away like the ledge was hot, at which point I was forced to lean out into the rain and take the drink off the sill. The entire tableau was still staring. She started to close the window, and I'll admit I called (rather forcefully, because I was pretty upset), "I need a straw, too, please."

She set the straw on the window ledge and backed away again, staring at me like I was not only a horror-flick villain come to dismember her but something disgusting she'd found at the bottom of a dumpster. I was so embarrassed and angry (I was actually shaking) by then that I just left without another word. I later decided to call and speak to the manager, not only to apologize for my rudeness, but also to explain that I was upset by the employee's actions. Each time I called, the phone just rang off the hook (and I was calling the number on the receipt).



Please, I don't need to get flamed for being slightly rude/impatient/whatever. I know I was a wee bit out of line to grab the bag from her. What I want to know is if the employee's reaction is reasonble and justified, or out-of-line. I've talked to some friends who don't think my initial action was rude enough to justify the way I was treated (or "served") afterwards.
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