It's been a while, but over this Thanksgiving week I was finally able to accompany my family on a short visit with some in-laws in western Missouri. It was a great trip with some wonderful Thanksgiving food and weather. But all good things must come to an end, and on Friday we drove back to the St. Louis area. But shortly after leaving, we made a stop in the small town of Butler, Missouri to grab a quick (we thought - more on that in a second) bite to eat at the McDonalds off of Rt 71/I-49.
I've watched the show several times and got a kick out of seeing the owner, Mark Mueller and his brother Mancow (yeah, the radio guy from Chicago) in action. In case you didn't remember, Max Motors is the place that was giving away a gun with every car purchase. Heh. That one didn't go over well with our gun-grabbing friends on the Left. But as demonstrated on GG&A, Mueller isn't exactly concerned about the sympathies of such folks.
After stopping briefly for me to snap off that (rather lousy) pic of Max Motors, we cruised down to the local McDonalds to grab breakfast and take a bio break, which meant we had to (gasp) go INSIDE to order our food.
The second bad move after actually going to McDonalds and going inside was for me to order a breakfast sandwich with egg whites and white cheddar....apparently a request that the crack (/sarc) staff at this McDonalds was not too well-versed at. My wife and I stood a full 10 minutes waiting for the employees to wait on everyone except us. I eventually said to one of the servers/clerks/whatever "Uh, are we going to get our food some time?" To which she responded "Hey, It's not my fault". And to which I responded "Yeah, it's your fault - you work here and represent the business". I then asked for the manager, complained and was met with a deer-in-the-headlights look and NO words. After another 2-3 minutes, the Not My Fault chick hands me the bag...without a single word spoken. I said "Uh, sorry about the wait??" and she failed to respond....after which I turned around, departed with the farewell message "You folks are pathetic" and left. This was, without a doubt, my worst experience EVER at a McDonalds. I suppose if we had a) used the drive through, and/or b) not ordered a food item that was apparently outside their core competency, maybe we would have had a better experience. But apparently it's beyond this bunch to be able to wait on people in person (one of my pet peeves - if a customer bothers to come inside, the staff should treat them with AT LEAST as much attention as the folks who choose to drive through), and to cook/serve things that appear on the actual menu.
Now apparently McDonalds is aware they have problems and are trying to address them. That's nice. But it's not my problem...their bad service IS. Perhaps they should consider a strategy such as that of In-N-Out Burger, who has an extremely bare-bones menu but VERY good food and VERY good service.
Imagine that. Good food, good, fast and friendly service at a reasonable price. Go figure. Take a lesson, McDonalds. I would drive many miles out of my way to eat at an In-N-Out. I would drive many miles out of my way to avoid eating at a McDonalds, especially one in Butler, MO.
So I had about 4-5 hours drive to think about my little McDonalds adventure and how I would frame this abysmal "customer service" experience as part of a Redstate diary. As I pondered the episode, it occurred to me that these folks typify the very bunch of fools who are now DEMANDING a $15.00/hour pay rate - for working fast food. FIFTEEN. I wouldn't pay the employees at the Butler McDonalds fifteen CENTS an hour. But - can you blame these folks for their ridiculous demands? The level of economic literacy in this country is so pitiful that they could not possibly understand that they would simply be writing their own pink slips with such a move. Simply supply-and-demand concepts are apparently beyond the grasp of those who believe that fundamentally unskilled fast-food employees deserve ridiculously high hourly rates. Just what do they think will happen when a store is forced to double the employee salary expense? Here, let me help you out with the answer, Mr./Mrs. Burger Microwaver (at McDonalds, they don't even flip burgers any more) & Coke filler: you will lose your job. The business is not going to take a loss or reduce their profit margin. YOU will be the victim. So instead of $7.50 an hour, you get ... nothing.
Despite all that, it was a great Thanksgiving. It was NOT a great McDonalds experience, but that won't happen again, as I won't be returning to a McDonalds any time soon. But it was definitely a reinforcing moment in my opinion that the $15/hour for fast food bunch are idiots. Not that I really needed any more evidence of that. To anyone passing through Butler, I suggest you bypass McDonalds and make a stop at a locally-owned small business such as Koehn Bakery...which has some of the best pies I've ever eaten.
Oh, and make sure your kids take economics in school.