January 5th, 2004


Brain dead order takers [c]

Someone's going to have to explain the difficulty in taking an order over the phone.

I call up to place an order. Ok. Get put on hold briefly, someone picks up. I'm thinking now maybe it wasn't an employee. Or maybe it was the owner's developmentally challenged son. (See? I can be Politically Correct.)

I say again I want to place an order. Ok, fine. "What's your name?" I give him my name. "Where do you live?" he asks. Then he thinks better of it and asks where I want it delivered. I say "[our address]. Floor 6." He asks if there's an apartment number. I say no, it's an office. Suite 6 then. No, not really, sixth floor. Oh, sixth floor. Yeah, sixth floor. Number? I give him my extension. I tell him they should use the phone in the lobby to call it. But just in case, I give him my cell phone too. Ok. That part's done. Phew.

"So what would you like?" I start giving the order. Things start off ok, he gets the first part -- the burger order -- down the first time. Then I order the next thing (I'm ordering for a group), a grilled chicken caesar salad. "Chicken caesar salad, ok. So how do you want that?" "Excuse me? What are the choices?" "Well. Uh. Do you want, uh, croutons? And, uh, you want caesar dressing and stuff?" I waited a moment for him to ask if I wanted chicken on it too, but he didn't go that far. "Yeah. Croutons. And caesar dressing." Sigh. Next up, french dip, with fries went smoothly. Then I threw him a curve ball.

"A cup of chili. And tuna on whole wheat." "How do you want the tuna?" "Huh?" "How do you want it cooked?" "Huh?" "Well, do you want it well done, or..." "Oh. No, sorry, I meant tuna salad." "Ok, what kind of dressing do you want?" "Uh... what kinds are there?" "Well, there's..." "Ok, wait, I think you misunderstood. I wanted the tuna - salad - sandwich. On whole wheat." "How do you want it?" "*sigh* What are the options?" "Let me check the menu." At this point he turns and asks someone how the tuna salad sandwich can be prepared, and then comes back on the phone. "Ok, uh, what kind of bread do you want? We've got white, rye, wheat, or a roll." "Wheat." "Ok and it comes with potatoes, you can get..." "Fries will be fine." "Ok, so tuna salad on wheat with fries." "Yes."


Did it really have to be that difficult? Really? I mean, honestly, did it?