$15 Per Hour and Technology May Ruin Our Country

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I had a chance to go to McDonalds today – the first time in a long time – for my two grandsons, and I’m not sure I will ever go again. I told them that if I did not love them I would have walked out without their lunch but at the ages of 4 and 1 … they did not understand.

While visiting my daughter, son-in-law and two grandsons this past week in Tallahassee I had an experience (several actually) that I felt I had to rant about.

I decided the second day there baby sitting so my daughter and son-in-law could get some work done from home that I would treat the boys, Cass and Finn, to a nice lunch from Mickey D’s. This was the first time I’ve gone into this establishment since the country has been discussing a Federal Minimum wage of $15 per hour. I was amazed that there was only one cash register and many people standing in front of Kiosk to order their food. It was lunch time, after all.

As much as I hate self checkout I also hate self check-in. So, I went to the cash register to order the boys meals. I said as slowly as I could talk, “I’ll have two happy meals. One with a plain hamburger and one with chicken Nuggets.” I was asked to repeat my order.

I repeated it. “What drinks would you like?,” the lady asked.

“My grandsons like the Strawberry Slush and I will pay extra,” I said.

“I’m Sorry, the Slush Machines are not working today,” said the lady.

Already getting angry I said, “Well Hell, give em milk!” Then I had to let her know if it was white or chocolate. “If I wanted Chocolate Milk I’d have said Chocolate Milk,” I almost screamed.

Next I had to wait for what seemed like hours. While waiting one lady who had ordered from the Kiosk came to the counter to get her order. This is when she learned “the Milk Shake Machine” was not working either (like it would have broke McDonalds to make her aware of that on the Kiosk). The woman behind the counter wanted to know what else she wanted to drink.

The lady, rightfully so, said, “Nothing … just give me my money back for the entire order.”

I thought, “Oh boy, this was gonna take awhile since only managers can do the refunds.”

While waiting for her refund another lady came up and asked the woman behind the counter, “Is our coffee ready yet?” She looked at me and said, “We ordered it with our meal but now have to take it with us since we ate our meal without the coffee.” She and her husband had to be in their mid 80’s and could hardly get around.

The lady came back and said, “We forgot to make it but it is making now.”

Forget it exclaimed the lady who had ordered it and her and her husband walked out.

Finally, after about 25 minutes my grandson’s orders were ready and I was happy to leave that place. I took them back home to eat their meal since the youngest one cannot wear a mask and my daughter does not want them in a store without a mask on. No, I don’t know how they would eat with a mask anyhow … but heck … I’m just the pappy and ain’t gonna ask any questions.

As I was driving back to my daughters house I got to thinking about the McDonalds $1 menu. A Hamburger, no fries and no drink. For the “American Meal” (hamburger, fries and a drink) I could spend $3.00. Wow what a deal!

This brought back more memories to my first visit to McDonalds way back in the 1960’s. Dad could not afford many dinners out … but back then a burger was 15 cents, Fries was 12 cents and a small coke was a dime. He could afford $0.37 for each of his three kids at least once per month. Oh, those were the good ole days when orders were not complicated and the people taking them were not INCOMPETENT.

The next day during our visit we decided to order from Applebee’s and I would once again go pick it up. Actually it was only me and my son in law that was ordering this time. My wife, the kids and my daughter was eating something else. I thought I’d be smart and order on line (which I do when I am at home).

I ordered my usual that I love … Baby back ribs with macaroni and cheese and coleslaw on the side.

Naturally when I got to my daughter’s home in Tallahassee the ribs were so tough you had to clamp down on them with your teeth and wrestle them off the bone. I could not figure out why since I’ve always had the meat falling off the bone in other Applebee’s locations around the country. Why can’t one restaurant in the same chain cook like all the rest in that chain? It must have something to do with the INCOMPETENCE of the one doing the cooking.

In addition, I did not get the coleslaw that I ordered on line. I was furious. This is another group of people looking to get paid $15.00 per hour minimum wage. I called the restaurant and talked to the Manager.

She said, “I see your order here Mr. Nix and you did order coleslaw. I have no idea why it is missing.” When I asked her how the baby back ribs should be cooked, she said, “so they fall off the bone.”

I said, “You may want to send your chef back to cook school because he apparently skipped that class. Furthermore make sure he is not getting $15 per hour until he learns how to cook all the meals.” It ended up where I got a full refund for my meal. But I did not want a full refund, I was hungry and wanted my ribs falling off the bone.

Again, INCOMPETENCE on the part of the person who read the order on-line and bagged it to go, and INCOMPETENCE on the part of the cook — and they both think they deserve $15 per hour.

It did not get any better. The next day we decided to get our meal from Zaxby’s. So there would be no confusion I drove over, walked in and placed the order in person. I won’t tell you the full order but it included two salads, One Southwestern and One Cobb Salad.

When I got to the house the Cobb Salad was missing. I was infuriated. I specifically asked the girl to check the order before she gave it to me to make sure it was all there. She did and said it was.

I drove back to Zaxby’s with receipt in hand and asked, “Where is my damned Cobb Salad.”

“Right over here,” the young lady said. “I will have them make it for you again.”

After I got the salad and was ready to leave I asked the young lady that originally filled my order, “Why did you tell me it was all here when it wasn’t.”

Her smart-assed response was, “Why didn’t you check it before you left.”

My comeback was … “Because I’m not the one requesting the $15 per hour compensation!” I almost called her a not so nice name that starts with a “B” but decided to hold my tongue.

When I got back home with my daughters Cobb Salad my son in law said, “I was waiting to see if I got a call to bail you out.”

My poor daughter was so upset she could not eat the salad after I went back and got it.

The Moral of this Rant …

A federally mandated $15 per hour minimum wage could end the economics as we know them here in America. MOST, NOT ALL, people working in fast food restaurants are not competent enough to be paid $7.50 per our, let-a-lone $15 per hour.

If they are competent in their work and perform their jobs responsibly they should be paid $15, $20 or even $30 per hour – but pay should be based on merit of work and not based on what some sleazy politician in Washington DC thinks they are worth. It is nothing more than SOCIALISM and the transference wealth from those who earned it to those who refuse to earn better themselves and earn it for themselves.

Again, I am not saying order takers and hamburger flippers should not earn more than minimum wage. What I am saying is that any incompetent person should not earn more than a minimum wage and the minimum wage should not be set so high that the customer must become the employee. Self check-in, self checkout … before long we will also have to go to the restaurant and cook our own meals. Now I know why my wife prefers to cook at home rather than go out to eat.

I never thought I would see a time in my lifetime where a person went to the grocery store and did not have someone ring up their purchase, take their money, bag their purchase, then have a young man take the products and put them in the trunk of their car for them … but those days are long-gone. We live in a world of expediency over customer service and people are becoming more and more incompetent as we move forward. Ever see a cashier these days try to make change when the cash register is down and not operating properly. It’s a laugh to say the least. Buy something for $2.75 … give the cashier a $5 bill and he/she has to look at the screen to see how much change to give you back.

What’s happening to people and common sense?

2 thoughts on “$15 Per Hour and Technology May Ruin Our Country

  1. Clyde Jimerson

    Hi Jerry, I was just reading the experience with your orders at McDonald’s & Zaxby’s while visiting your daughter. You’re not the only one that has these issues. I feel the same way you do about $15.00 an hour. Most of these people need to work for a lot less. I went to the grocery store in Atlanta while visiting one of my sons looking for a particular item. Upon needing some help to find the item, I went to three or four different employees and not one could speak English. Sometimes I think it’s just me at 75. We miss doing business with you. Take care….Clyde

    1. Clyde it was so good to hear from you. I hope this finds both you and Pat doing well. I surely do miss our visits. Thanks for reading AND COMMENTING on my recent rant about the $15 per hour people. I’m really concerned with what is going on in this country and know that I don’t have long enough to live to do anything about it. I am writing as much as I can about various topics in hopes that someday – perhaps when I’m gone – that some of my kids or grandkids may pick up the ball and run with it while they still have time, if you know what I mean. Please keep reading and commenting from time to time if you feel that you can. I appreciate it.

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