The Inconsistency of McDonald’s


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It is a well-established fact in my family that when it comes to ‘chuck bucket’ fast food, I don’t do McDonalds. There is nothing remotely edible on the menu and the whole salad thing is just completely laughable!

Burger King or Hungry Jack’s (depending where you live) is the lesser of the evils. KFC is also acceptable and Oporto is neither here nor there but depending on the level of starvation, palatable.

There is however the issue of the playground, and as any parent knows, these joints are deliberately designed to be visible from a mile away. Once spotted, it is for sure and certain that you little people will hassle the crap out of you, until you capitulate and pull in just to shut them up.

There is nothing there for me to eat and the coffee has always been worse than dishwater, so what does one do to pass the time while the little ones are getting stuck up a multitude of inaccessible tubes?

On one of my supervisory shifts, I decided to have a crack at the McCafe. In all honesty, my need for caffeine overruled any logical reasoning that I may have been attempting at the time. Well, who can even think without caffeine! Lo and behold I noticed a shelf supporting a range of syrup flavourings. Hey, I am in the palace of preservatives and additives, so why not dose myself up.

I decide to sample a white chocolate skim latte, hold the equal tablet. There really is absolutely no point in going skim with the amount of liquid sugar I was about to consume, but I needed to amuse myself, somehow. Now, you are under no obligation to believe me, but I must say that I was very pleasantly surprised and in fact almost considered ordering another.

Recently, on the way to work I decided to go drive by, instead of my usual haunt. On approach, I can see that it is fairly congested, so, parking it will have to be. As I walked through the entrance, I almost performed some very unladylike manoeuvrings as my heel lost contact with the tile. I was sure some of the menu was to blame but turns out at some point I have lost half my heel instead.

So, a crappy start to my day which I had been trying to avoid. Never mind, a good coffee always puts things into perspective. I approach the counter and order my new standard: Large skim latte with white chocolate syrup. Not particularly difficult and the order appears to be placed. Only problem at this point is that there seems to be some confusion about how much to charge me.

To be honest, I have no idea. I have never taken note but I hand over $5.15. Seems reasonable enough. Waiting, waiting! I am the only customer. They finally procure my beverage and just out of habit I ask: “Skim, right?”. The reply comes “No, did you order skim?” I was not about to come back with a polite retort and thankful the order taker piped up and confirmed that I had in fact ordered the correct thing.

At this point, the two staff members engage in an argument about who had or had not done whatever it was that was wrong and I left them defending themselves to each other. I would have thought that the basic customer service principle: ‘the customer is always right’, should have prevailed and was expecting something along the lines of “let me make you another one.” I hobbled out with my not so great coffee and another layer of crap on my already crappy morning, which incidentally got a truckload crappier but that is an entire post in itself.

Being the brave adventurer that I am, I have returned to this ‘International Restaurant’ of golden arches for further sampling and analysis as any scientist knows that in order to come to a valid conclusion one needs a statistically valid sample size. I have twice paid $3.95, then there was the $5.15, then we sky-rocketed to $6.45, and now I am in serious doubt whether they even have a standard pricing structure for this combo! To add salt to the wound I have yet to have a single drive through experience where I’m not out in a waiting bay. People, it’s drive through! If I wanted to park and buy, I would.

Epic fail McDonald’s. The only thing I can say with any certainty is that they know how to be consistently inconsistent. There is a reason I put them on the banned list. I really should follow my own advice.