1/13/08 - McDonald's Day 4

Sunday was my best day at work. I had a blast. First of all, there were only a few people working. About what I would expect on a regular basis. Two in the kitchen, one on fries (who doubled as a runner, two in drive thru and one on the front line. The manager then doubled as a filler when people needed a break.

The most interesting thing happened when I first got there though. One of the guys who started a few days after me was going to be having a drug test (apparently they assume I am clean, because they haven't requested a drug test yet). Anyways, I have found out that I might be the only person who doesn't at the very least smoke weed. Crack has been discussed on more than one occassion, but I believe it's mainly just Mary J. Anyways, this new guy asked if I smoked so I politely said, no I don't. So he then asked if I was "clean, straight". At first, I figured he was just offering some, and I politely turned him down. His next response was pulling out a small empty bottle of purrell hand sanitizer and asking me if I would fill it up. I didn't want to make any enemies, so I had to lie and say that I had just used the bathroom before I got there and didn't have anything in the tank. The truth was, I had planned on taking a restroom break about 5 minutes after I got to work, because my bladder was about to explode and I failed to go before I left.

In order to not back myself into a corner, I had to hold my pee until he left about 2 hours later. I can honestly say that is the first time I've ever had anyone ask for a bottle of my pee. Something that I didn't think of at the time, but through conversations have realized is that I have no idea what he was really planning on doing with the pee. Most places, when drug testing require a fresh sample and all but pat you down before you use the bathroom at their facility. Also, most places have a temperature gauge that require the urine to be a certain termpature before they accept it. On top of that, the size of bottle he had would not have been a large enough sample anyways.

What I don't get, is why people just wouldn't stop for a week or two in order to pass a drug test. If you are getting a new job, you should just assume that you have to pass a drug test, so just quit smokin' the stuff for a while. This of course is one of those things that I will probably never understand simply because drugs as a whole have never been an issue for me. I do not think that this will be an experiment I pull to try to put myself in their situation.

So back to the reason Sunday night was so much fun. BECAUSE I FINALLY GOT TO PUT TOGETHER SANDWICHES AND WORK THE GRILL. The whole reason I really started this whole experiment was to work with the food and I basically told the manager on duty that I would not be cleaning dishes that night. Although I wound up doing a few during the course of the night, I didn't spend several straight hours with my hands in nasty water. I had the opportunity to grill burgers (and actually flip them because they weren't getting completely done on one side) and put a bunch of sandwiches together. Although I still slightly struggled with what went on some of the sandwiches (I never new that quarter pounders got the large onions instead of the small chopped ones), I got the hang of it and only screwed up a handful of times.

Here is what I learned: It's not hard to put together a sandwich, even when it gets pretty busy. I guess I'm kind of taking back what I said after the first day, but still, it's not that difficult. I made sure to spend an extra half second on each of the sandwiches to make sure the meat and cheese were lined up. The toppings are not quite as easy, but I've never complained about that. Others don't do the same, and it might just be that over time you lose focus or just don't care, but for now, I can throw together a sandwich, make it look good, and still get it out just about as fast as anyone else.

I managed to work out a system to make the cheese easier to put on the sandwich. The cheese comes in stacks of slices and they are not that easy to pull apart, especially when you have 10 double cheeseburgers on the board, and only 12 patties already cooked. During the slow times, I just took the time to pull the patties apart and stack them in an alternating diagonal pattern. That way, when the orders came flying across, you could easily pull off the first couple pieces of cheese, put them on the meat/bun and you are done.

I work again on Thursday night, so I'll have an update for you on Friday about my time then. I have no idea why I got a majority of the week off, but I'm glad for it. Although I don't mind the work, there are other things that I like to do...like sleep and hang out with my wife. Regardless, I think next week will be my last week regardless of how much they have me working. I don't think I'll do it tomorrow, but there are a few things that I'd like to share with people when it comes to ordering at McDonald's. Things to request fresh, things to ask for, and things to look for when you get your order. I'm not a big McD's eater, but these are things that I never thought of.

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