Ding, fries are done (bye bye BK)

1, Jul, 2009

Dear Burger King Corporate,

My experiences with your restaurants has been more trouble than it’s worth. My local store has not gotten an order right in 8 tries. I’ve tried another store and they are 2 out of 4 for getting my orders right. I don’t find 2 for 12 an acceptable average for a restaurant whose motto is “Have it your way”.

You may be wondering what types of issues I’ve had and that’s a fair question. I happen to like all the condiments on my burgers/sandwiches/etc. so there hasn’t been any type of special orders in these experiences. There’s been wrong sandwiches, wrong drinks, missing fries, etc. It’s been at least 2 or 3 issues on every order. Once I ordered a limited time burger that had cheddar cheese, sauteed onions, etc. The promotion had been running for a couple weeks so I thought they could make it by then but they had to remake it 4 times after me talking to the manager and taking 45 minutes to get it taken care of. I boycotted that store (only went to one other store once) for 3 years over that deal.

Your marketing has been very good during all this time. My son could tell me exactly what toy was in the kids meal during this entire time. Doesn’t matter if it’s Sponge Bob, Transformers, etc. but he knew I wouldn’t take him there because we’ve had a few talks about why we don’t go there. I will put up with a lot for my kids so I told him last week that we’ll give Burger King another chance. He’s really been wanting the Transformer toys so I went through the drive through on the way to drop him off at the day care.

Me: “I’d like a BK kids meal”
Drive-through: “4 or 6 piece chicken?” (I didn’t ask for chicken)
Me: “(to my son)Do you want nuggets?”
Son: “Yes”
Me: “4 piece please with chocolate milk (son says “Dr Pepper” from the back), I’m sorry make that Dr Pepper”
Drive-through: silence
Drive-through: more silence
Drive-through: “$3.31, please pull around” (What about asking for the side or a sauce to go with the chicken nuggets?? What about asking if the toy is for a boy or girl?)

We pull around and I ask for some honey-mustard at the window, take the food and drive him to the daycare. I get back to pick him up and find that they had given him a toddler toy instead of the Transformer toy he was wanting. His little sister liked the ball that came with it but she’s one. This is when I decided enough was enough. There’s plenty of other options around and I don’t need you. Seems you would try a little harder if you needed me.

I don’t want anything from you. I’m going to make sure this makes it to the appropriate person in the corporate office and I’m going to make sure the local store manager knows what is going on and then we are done.

Thank you,
Dale Shrauger

Fluid motion

17, May, 2009

Yesterday morning finally brought the end to the record 22 straight days of rain. The roads have dried up and it’s a sunny 70 degree day . The family is taking a Sunday afternoon nap and I don’t have to be anywhere for a couple hours. Time for a ride.

Turn to watch the garage door come down, flip the sun visor on the helmet, let the clutch out and I’m rolling as it begins. The bike is glued to the road as I turn out of the drive and go around the corner to exit the neighborhood. The next hour and change (my watch didn’t jump in front of my eyes so I’m not sure how long exactly) was an exercise in effortlessness. Every shift was precise, every light was green, every car would turn off or be right in the passing zone to glide by and the wind just gently flowed by with its comfortable cool breeze.

The mechanics of brake, weight, shift, look, accelerate seemed to be far away today. They were still happening but it seemed more like flowing with stream than negotiating the road. I would enter a turn a few mph faster than I normally do but it was so easy. I’d pick my apex and the bike would just take me there. My exit speeds were higher than my normal pace when I’m deliberately trying to make a quick clean curve. It just flows so smoothly around the bends.

There are several other bikes on the road today. Everyone gives a big wave today. Seems they are glad to see a break in the rain with a beautiful day too. This trip was over far too soon today. I glide into the garage and park the bike. The gear goes back on the hangers in the corner of the garage.

I change into my mowing clothes and head out to take care of grass with 3 weeks worth of rain fueled growth. Somehow the mowing didn’t seem to take long today. I ride to church to run sound for the youth group(always the tech). The usual “Do you ride a motorcycle?” question (helmet sitting on top of the wireless receivers and the jacket on my chair) doesn’t get an answer tonight. I just smile and they know the answer.

Sorry about no pictures but I don’t think I would have bothered to take any even if I remembered to grab the camera.