A few years ago, a friend and her family invited us to dinner. We sat around the table with the hum of conversation and laughter filling the air. Clattering forks and knives complimented the noisy chorus as we shared a meal prepared by our friend.
We talked of the naughty escapades of our youth 25-plus years ago, laughing until our stomachs hurt and tears filled our eyes. The tweens at the table let out occasional gasps of disbelief and embarrassment as they learned about the stupid adventures of their elders.
“Wait…wait until I tell you this,” my giggling friend continued, “When I worked at the burger joint, we used to spit in the food of people we didn’t like!”
(Cue the crickets)
I quickly scanned my plate.
Finally her son blurted out, “What? What!?!”
You see, at one time or other each of us had been on her bad side. I had certainly gone to said burger joint in the midst of a quarrel. I wouldn’t be lying if I said we hated each other at that time.
My brow wrinkled as I rummaged through the files of my memory, trying to remember if anything had the subtle flavor and texture of spit. There is a good chance I got the secret ingredient at least once.
The Internet reveals stomach-turning anecdotal stories.
You may not realize, but police officers are common victims.
In 2008 two New York city McDonald’s employees got into hot water after the cook was told the order was “for a cop” and to “make it special.” He did. There have been incidents that involve not only the occasional loogie, but cockroaches and broken glass placed into their food as well.
Take a look at news stories returned in this Google news search for incidents just between cops and McDonald’s employees alone.
Recently two Domino’s employees were fired for making a video that showed them spitting on food (and other disgusting acts) and posting it on YouTube. Yeah, they were that kind of special idiot. They claim the food was never delivered, however the video shows them using a pizza cutter and other items likely used again.
In January 2009, a former Portage, Indiana official tried to unsuccessfully bribe a drive-thru worker at McDonald’s with $50 to spit into the beverage of the police officer behind him in line.
In 2008 a man working at a fast food restaurant in Seattle was arrested for spitting in someone’s burger because they were wearing Pittsburgh Steeler’s clothing.
These are just the tip of the iceberg my dear citizen friends.
Some common reasons given for spitting in food?
- The patron was white
- The patron was black
- The patron was ______
- Not tipping enough
- Returning food to the cook
- Occupying the table for too long with a small bill
- Making the servers hustle
- They just didn’t like you
Last week at a local fast-food drive-thru, I remarked about the unusually high price. I asked for a receipt and the employee said it was in the bag. Nope. I asked again. She left and came back with a barely legible receipt.
Closer inspection revealed a charge for a burger I didn’t order or receive.
After talking to the manager, I caught sight of the drive-thru worker who gave me a look. The kind of glowing red eye look that spawned a raging inferno around her and music from the Omen blasting in my ears.
Leaving the restaurant, I told my son, “Yikes I’ll have to watch out later for spit in my food.”
A couple days later I encountered the same employee at the drive-thru window. “I knew it was you. I recognized your voice,” she said as she handed me my food. In a syrupy voice with exaggerated fake smile she bid me adios with, “You have a nice day ma’am.”
It wasn’t lost on my son who screamed from the back seat, “You better check your food mama!”
When we got home, I inspected my salad. While I didn’t see anything gooey, there was a lot more liquid than there should have been. It could have been condensation. It could have been rinse water? I wasn’t sure. It promptly ended up in the trash.
Have you ever spit in anyone’s food or know someone who has?
What do you think the punishment for this should be?