Okay, maybe not all of them, but there was at least one person who was working today at 12:45 who could be described as a racist asshole. I made an honest mistake and as such, one person YELLED to another, “Dumb white girl don’t know how to read!!!”
Um, I know how to read, but I sometimes have trouble interpreting confusing grammar. I’m sorry. Mistakes happen.
The sign read:
speaker is broken please say “hi” when you pull up
Since the note begins with, “speaker is broken,” I thought they meant to say hi when I pulled up to the window to order my food because, well, the speaker is broken.
BUZZ! Wrong answer!
So I get to the window and am greeted with one timid person trying to take my order and another angrily yelling to me from behind her, “Why didn’t you place your order at the speaker?” I was blindsided by her tone of voice and before I could say anything she turned around and yelled to the back, “Dumb white girl don’t know how to read!!!”
Not really sure what to do, me and the other white girl (I’m not sure if she was also dumb; she seemed afraid more than anything), we just looked at each other blankly and she proceeded to complete the transaction. I apologized, trying to explain that I erred by misreading the sign; she shrugged her shoulders and closed the window.
Now this part I’m just speculating, but I’m sure the aforementioned conversation continued, as I heard muffled voices and several people came to have a peek at the “dumb white girl.”
I apologized two more times before driving off. Again, the girl shrugged her shoulders and didn't attempt to pass my words along. I should’ve asked for my money back because I’m not sure it’s a good idea to even eat that food. They were so cheesed off that I didn’t say “hi” at the speaker, who knows how they've tainted my beloved chili cheese burrito.
How would you have handled the situation?
I remember being in a similar ordeal in 2001. It involved a different grouping of asshole Taco Bell employees, a long wait behind no other customers and me feeling ignored as I watched them lazily talk for more than 15 minutes after I paid. And I may have been hopped up on PMS. I felt like a hostage, watching the clock, waiting for my food, and since I had already paid, I couldn't abandon the mission. To make a long story short, they said some stuff and I chucked my full 32 ounce Dr. Pepper at the drive-thru window.
Sure, there was an element of awkwardness to it, me sitting there waiting for my refund, glaring at the person on the other side of the glass, watching soda and ice run down the window and spill onto both the floor inside and concrete outside. Though I’d never* do that again, there was something satisfying about watching that racist asshole clean up my soda and refund my money.
Both times, there was nothing I could’ve said to those people to make them think of me as anything other than the “the dumb white girl.” Nowadays I mostly choose the suck-it-up-and-back-away-from-the-situation route because I don’t want to cause any trouble.
*Never say never.
Listening to: Toadies - Tyler