Friday, August 05, 2005

Something Out of Nothing

We've all been there. You're in line somewhere at a store or something and you happen to be right behind the person who feels the need to cause a scene. And it only happens when you're in a hurry to get someplace. So you wait, like a good little consumer, and you look off to the left and right, pretending not to notice what's going on. The scene gets longer and louder and you're left wondering, "Is it really worth all this commotion?"

I'm in line at a drive-thru today and the woman in front of me is placing her order at the speaker. She ordered one Chicago Dog with just onions and peppers and another Chicago Dog with chili. Sounded pretty normal. Here's where it started to get interesting:

Woman in green minivan: "I have a coupon."
Employee at window: "What is the coupon for?"
Woman in green minivan: "It says I get a free order of french fries with any Chili Dog."
Employee at window: "So you want two Chicago Dogs and one Chili Dog?"
Woman in green minivan: "No, I only want two hotdogs."
Employee at window: "So you want one Chicago Dog and one Chili Dog?"
Woman in green minivan (clearly irritated): "No, I said I want one Chicago Dog with onions and peppers and one Chicago Dog with chili."
Employee at window (pretty confused): "But your coupon is for a Chili Dog, so do you want a Chili Dog?"

The plot thickens.

Woman in green minivan (just plain mad): "I ordered a Chicago Dog with chili on it, so that makes it a chili dog."
Employee at window: "Ma'am, a Chicago Dog is different from a Chili dog. You ordered a Chicago Dog, but your coupon is for a Chili Dog. Would you like me to add a Chili Dog to your order so you can use the coupon?"
Woman in green minivan: "NO! I ONLY WANT TWO HOTDOGS! I want one of the Chicago Dogs with chili on it, so that's a Chili Dog."

At this point I'm thinking, we could be here 'til dinner time. And then I'm thinking, does this woman even understand what she's saying? I mean, if her Chicago Dog/Chili Dog concept worked in other aspects of life, we could all go out and manipulate anything that we don't want into something else that we do. Sort of like The Matrix...what you're seeing in front of you isn't what it appears to be at all. What sense does that make? If it walks like a Chili Dog and talks like a Chili Dog...

Sometimes it just fascinates me that people have the energy to create unnecessary chaos. I don't know about you, but my life throws me enough curveballs that I don't need to add to the excitement. Especially over a coupon that's gonna save me less than a buck. It goes back to my thought about contentment. But I think some people don't want to be content. They thrive on the drama. Maybe it breaks up the monotony. I'm exhausted just thinking about it.

I'm not sure what finally ended up in the woman's bag when her green minivan sped off, but I'm pretty sure after all that ruckus, whatever it was didn't taste very good.

Thanks for listening.

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