Friday, December 14, 2007

Second Rate Santa and the Sage of the ... Midnight Meat

Things are crazy around the mall during Christmas time, and they get even crazier when you can count the number of shopping days left without having to unzip your pants. (i.e. - less than ten days for those who geniuses and don't have to count things out on your fingers or for those of a gender that unzipping your pants doesn't not help)

That's the time frame for this story. I believe it was the last Saturday before Christmas and the mall was staying open until midnight. Okay folks, let me say it. Their is nothing at The Gap or Banana Republic that you need at twelve o'clock at night. And if you have your kids out at that time dragging them from store to store you seriously need to ask Ol' Saint Nick for one of those Dr. Spock books because you are in dire need of some parenting tips.

Notice I didn't say Jolly Ol' Saint Nick because nothing makes a guy more unjolly than to have been wearing an itchy fake beard all night while dealing with a sleigh full of rude and pushy procrastinators who want to blame you for them being behind in their shopping. Add in the fact fact they trot up a tired worn-out kid, who should have been in bed hours ago, and demand I repeat DEMAND a picture where everyone is all smiles ... Well the whole scenario conjures up the the old saying Shit in one hand and want in the other. Then see which fills up first.

Got an idea what kind of night I was having? Good, because this story really starts after I'd yanked the white beard off, Stripped out of the red velvet suit. Don't get excited ladies, I quickly put on my regular clothes which probably consisted of a flannel button up shirt since it was cold and a pair of wranglers and maybe some lace up hiking boots. You know your average lumberjack fashion.

So there I was at a quarter past midnight, looking a good bit like an agitated Paul Bunyon. Now normally I'd hike down the mall to the restroom to wash the white wax out of my eyebrows and the middle portion of my moustache, but like I said I was fed up and ready to leave so I trudged straight outside where my wife was waiting in the nice warm car to pick me up. At that time we only had one vehicle.

She took one look at said, "Rough night?"
"You can't imagine."

As we drove i realized that my stomach was trying to gnarl trough my spine so it could go out and find some food on its own. I'd eaten a dozen or so of those Little Debbie Oatmeal cookies that took star billing in last week's episode of the Santa Saga, but a man can't live on oatmeal and creme-filling alone -- he needs MEAT.

I am driving, since my wife hates to drive ant night and her driving scared the bejeezus out of me even when the sun is shining bright, so I pull into WhataBurger, since unlike the mall, most of the fast food joints had closed at a decent hour. Now while I contend no one needs overpriced name brand clothing at midnight access to grease-laden food is an around the clock requirement.

So we pull up at the drive through window and I order a bacon cheeseburger with meat and cheese only. Simple right? Not for the fine folks working at Whataburger and twelve-thirty at night. Let's just say I'm not sure the folks on duty that night could count passed ten whether they unzipped or not. But I didn't know that when I ordered, or even when they handed my sack of food through the window.

It wasn't until I took my first bite and gobs of mustard oozed down my throat. Okay many of you have heard me say, Lettuce is the Devil and it is but mustard happens to be one of the devils disciples. I hate the stuff and anything that was turned into gas and used as a weapon cannot be good to ingest. But back to the story.

I did a u-turn fast than you can say Blitzen and headed back to Whataburger. I stomped inside with the nasty taste of yellow satan at the back of my throat and headed straight for the counter. There wasn't another customer in the place, but that didn't keep the forty something year old dud behind the counter from staring at me with the slack jawed expression of a teenage pot head. Which no doubt he had been at one point in his life. The pothead probably still fit him but you can bet your Stretch Armstrong (that was a toy back in the day for any youngsters reading this) he hadn't been a teenager since sometime in the seventies.

Weird look aside, I told him my order was wrong and I wanted a bacon cheeseburger with meat and cheese only.

He opened up my burger and said that's what this is.
"No it had mustard. I just want meat and cheese."
"Oh .." He nodded his head despite continuing to stare at me as if I had an oatmeal turd for a nose. "No mustard. Got it."

I waited four or five minutes and he handed me a new sack. I pulled out he burger to check it and right away knew it was wrong again. I unwrapped it and there was the Devil itself in all its green evilness. Along with a slice of tomato and onion ... but at least there wasn't any mustard.

I should have just scraped the offending veggies off and lived with a bit of tomato juice and what not but after my long night I was agitated and said, "This is still wrong. I only want meat and cheese. Nothing else."

By this time I had noticed the cook peeking over the fryer at me. Along with the occasional weird glance from the drive-thru girl. They took my burger and again I waited. This time when I opened it there was not a drop mustard, nary a vegetable in sight, but you know what else was missing? The hamburger patty.

Right about then I lost it. I freely admit when I raised my voice and said, "What the hell is a matter with you people!" I was not only taking out my frustration about the burger but every crying bawling kid, every Doubting -too-smart-for-their-own-good-Thomas of a kid, every belligerent parent as well.

I ranted for a few minutes and then asked to see the manager. When the man in charge appeared he frowned and gave the same exact dumbfounded expression I'd been getting from his employees, but finally he said, "Can I help you sir?"

"I sure as hell hope so. I want a bacon cheeseburger with meat and cheese only. Nothing else. Is that too much to ask for?"

He opened up the wrapper and looked at his employees last effort. What wrong with this one?"

"There is no hamburger patty in it."

Ne nodded still staring at me and I cam to the conclusion he hadn't really heard a word I'd said because he was too bust eyeballing me.

Again I lost it and a little sarcastic elf began whispering in my ear so I asked. "Is hamburger meat?"
The manager nodded.
"Is bacon meat?"
Another nod.
"Is lettuce meat?"
He frowned but shook his head.
"Is it cheese?"
"Of course not?" A bit of irritation seeped into his speech.
"Is mustard meat?"
"No."
"Are they cheese?"
"Sir, we both know they are not."
"Then quit putting on my burger and make it the way I ordered it."

My tone finally wiped the dazed looked off the guys face as he crossed his arms and said, "Tell me how you want it and I'll personally guarantee it is made right."

I nodded and said. "I'll make this real easy since all of you seem a bit slow. "Put down the bottom of a bun, add a hamburger patty a slice of cheese, three slices of bacon and then put the top on with out adding another damn thing." I delivered this fine little speech with a good bit of hand gestures to demonstrate how it should be done.

A minute later I finally had my burger just like I wanted, but possible whit a bit of spit added after the fir I'd thrown but the spit of some middle aged pothead is still better than lettuce or mustard.

Out in the car my wife asked, "What took so long."

I gave her the complete replay and then said, "And the whole time those people kept staring at me as if I was crazy."

She gave me a look very reminiscent of the ones I'd gotten inside Whataburger and said, "Maybe it's because when you get mad those freaky little white eyebrows of your dance all around."

That's when it dawned on me. I still had the colored eyebrows as well as the Hitler portion of my mustache colored white. Somewhere, a former Whataburger employee is probably blogging about the Christmas where some crazed guy with flocked eyebrows and mustache came in ranting and raving about meat and cheese only.

21 comments:

jjdebenedictis said...

*rolling about in hysterics*

Angie said...

[giggling facepalm]

Ya know, Travis, it's really not fair that you expect people to actually concentrate when you're being deliberately weird and distracting. :D

Angie, still snickering

WordVixen said...

Oh, ye gods! :) Yup, this was worth waiting for.

Charles Gramlich said...

I knew a guy with eyebrows like that for real. It did make it hard to listen to him.

CamiKaos said...

I'd really like to have a really coherent funny comment here about my hatred of mayo and onions on my burgers and how not one can every understand that.

But I am too busy laughing my ass off.

Sam said...

HAhahahaha!!

That is too funny!!!

preTzel said...

Mustard is good stuff. Lettuce I can do w/out but ketchup, mustard, and onions are a *must* on a burger.

Now I would have given my right arm to have all of that on video just so I could send it in to AFV. LOLOL!

Patti said...

fricken hilarious...i'm gonna run to the dollar store and get me some oif those eyebrows for the expressed purpose to wear when i am peeved. carzy people get more respect when mad!

Danette Haworth said...

I've got the same problem with tomatoes!

Redneck Mommy said...

Tears of laughter. Seriously. Streaking down my face as I imagine your little white eyebrows waggling about and you getting mad.

Brilliant.

texlahoma said...

Reminds me of a scene from the movie Falling Down, good stuff.

cher said...

i love mustard.
i just love the fast food retards. they make the world a better place. And your stomach knawing its way out of your spine to feed itself? friggin brilliant!

~SUV Mama~ said...

I love it.

Reminds me of the greatest fast food scene of all time: Michael Dogulas in Falling Down.

Except less guns & violence.

:)

Stephen Parrish said...

I keep saying this, Travis: you've got to publish a collection of such essays under the title Guess Who's Been Sitting in My Lap? Confessions of a Shopping Mall Santa

Bernita said...

Animated zombie eyebrows.
~pause for giggling fit~
Me, I loathe ketchup and mayo.

Sherry said...

You have been living some wild life!! I used to hear stories of customers who came into mickey d's when my oldest worked there...he's 19 now and this was only last year..he'd often get the all night drive thru shift and the stories he'd tell..but he never had anyone who looked quite like you!!! :) But he'd be right with you on airheads who don't get an order right...he's picky about how he likes his too and thinks nothing of waiting until it's "right"!!

lettuce said...

haha

sorry to hear about the mustard prejudice tho.

Church Lady said...

ROTFLMAO!!!
I agree with Stephen, these are awesome!
:-)

Reid said...

That's some pretty high-quality idiots you're dealing with there. The problem I blogged about was having too much of the wrong food in my order. I never even thought they might forget the meat.

Whataburger is one of those places that always seems like a good idea, but almost never is.

AaroN said...

I'm betting "midnight meat" brings some interesting search results.

Bubblewench said...

dying laughing Travis!

Ok, I totally know your frustration. When HM and I go out, it's bacon cheeseburger, with NOTHING but Bacon, Cheese, and burger. If ANYTHING and I mean ANYTHING includeing one little drop of pickle juice comes NEAR that burger, he won't eat it.

Thankfully, he's never gone off while having waxed brows & stache!