I’m deliberately abusing the English language grammar rules to make a point. I think I get to do that in a title. I point this out because I have grammar gurus, word nerds and rule mongers following and editing this blog. In case you’re one of those folks and you are having a hard time with the whole wrong-word-used-for-effect thing, let me just say that I’m confused and upset and frustrated. Or, I’m confused, I’m frustrated and I’m upset. Or, I’m confused, upset and frustrated. Or I am all of those things, said the right way with correct punctuation.
The picture in the upper right corner didn’t start this little rant, but it pushed it out of my brain and onto the page for two reasons. First, this isn’t the first time this (I’ll get to what this is in a minute) has happened, and second, this isn’t the only place this happens. What happened was that they toasted my sandwich.
I explained to the clerk that I was buying the sandwich to have for lunch. I do that sometimes when I haven’t brought a lunch and when the weather forecast is such that I don’t want to have to go out for lunch.
The first thing that bothers me is that the clerk has to add “Not Toasted” to my order. I would think that “Toasted” would be the option, but no. “Not Toasted” is a button on the cash register. It prints on the receipt, on the order slip (pictured) and on the screen above the woman who makes my sandwich. I can see the screen from the counter. I actually yelled over to the woman as she was putting my sandwich in the oven: “the ham and cheese sandwich is not to be toasted!”
Slide, slam, toast, ding.
“Huh? You didn’t want this toasted?”
“No.” That’s why I added “not toasted” to the order.
Her response was to replace the French Roll that the sandwich is served on. They have done this every other time when they have made this mistake. This time, I decided to be a jerk about it.
“If you don’t mind” I was trained to be polite, even when being a jerk. “If you don’t mind, I’d like a new sandwich, not just a new roll.”
“But the new roll is not toasted.”
“But the sandwich was toasted and the cheese has been melted and I’m not eating this thing until noon” (it was 6:15 am).
Apparently, any old clerk can waste a roll. Wasting ham and cheese requires a manager.
The manager looked at the slip, looked at the sandwich, looked at me and said “you should have asked for this not to be toasted when you ordered it.”
I wanted to say “you just read the slip. The slip says ‘not toasted.’ How do you think that got there?” But I simply said “I did.”
He looked at the slip again and agreed that the whole sandwich should be replaced. Then he instructed the sandwich maker to read the slips more carefully in the future.
While I’m on the subject, another thing that nobody seems to read is email. I send out invitations to events held by a professional association. For a few years, we were offering people who couldn’t make it to the event in person, the option to attend over WebEx. The email invitations were two paragraphs long. The first talked about the event. The second paragraph described the logistics and ended with: “If you can’t attend the event in person, we can arrange for you to participate over the Internet.” If you registered for the event, there was a separate price point for Attend via Internet. We charged less for that option since we couldn’t serve breakfast over the Internet – all we need is that Heisenberg Compensator, sorry, you know, Star Trek.
Without fail, at least one member would send me an email asking: “I am unable to make it to this event in person. Is there any way you can stream the event over the Internet?”
I’ll be voting later today. The polling center I am assigned to divides the list of registered voters according to street. I am usually in the second group of streets. Last year, perhaps because they expected a lower turnout, there were fewer tables, each covering more streets and I was in the first group. While I was in line, I watched three people go to the wrong table. Each time, they ignored the sign and went to the table (I assume) they usually go to.
Now for the event that started this rant. There are signs on several doors in our building reminding people to open the door slowly since the door open out into a hallway. Three people have been clobbered by a door in the past month. Nobody reads nothing.