drive thru

Christmas brings the best, and the worst, out of people. I believe that there is far more good that comes out of the season, but let’s face it, that’s not nearly as much fun to write about. I am still wondering what it was that I did to this guy in the fast food drive thru, but I figure he needs to be wished Merry Christmas.


I innocently pulled into the drive through behind an older, slightly beat up car in my local Wendy’s drive through. I noticed that there was a car behind me, and not wanting to leave her hanging out in the parking lot, I pulled a little closer to that car in front of me. All of a sudden, these two very large paws raised and seemingly hit the roof of his car. The man vehemently stared at me in his rear view mirror. His perfectly round face was bright red, and he was yelling. It didn’t take much lip reading ability to know what he was calling me. Then he noticed that I saw him and started to wave backwards as if he was swatting away flies.


I understood that he believed I had pulled too close, which I didn’t know was a thing in a drive thru. I realized that although I couldn’t see the bottoms of his tires, but I could still see the top. I didn’t think that my white, mom-car Kia Sorento could be intimidating, so I was really confused as to why this was a thing. I checked my own rear view mirror to see if I could make this not-so-jolly man in front of me happy and back up a bit. The woman behind me was right on my bumper. So there I was.


Luckily, the car in front of him finished his order, and pulled forward. I believed the incident was over. Not so much. The mad man did not pull to the microphone to order. He pulled up to the picture of a burger and stopped. Now mind you, this was not a menu he stopped at. It was just a picture of a burger, and no matter how good that burger looked, it did not deserve the time that this man spent stopped there. I didn’t know what to do. I waited a very respectful amount of time before I tapped my horn.


The man’s car started to bounce. His arms flailed, his face went from red to maroon, and I swear I could see the saliva flying out of his filthy mouth. Then he reached for his door, and I thought, “God help me, he’s coming to get me!” Then, I have to admit, there was that part of me, the part that was sick of Christmas shopping, and tired of my sixth graders excited for break. It thought, “Bring it on, fat man!” 


I will never know which part would have prevailed because instead of the door handle, he was reaching to roll his window down. I think he lost a lot of angry momentum because it didn’t seem like his window wanted to roll very well. When he finally got it down, he stuck his arm out, gave a couple fly shooing waves, flipped me off, then rolled forward to order his lunch. I stayed where I was until he ordered and pulled around to gather his lunch.


You would think this was enough, but not quite. At the light near Wendy’s, a clunker pulled up beside me. Yes, it was my friend from the drive thru. We made eye contact. He began yelling at me again. I simply waved, smiled my biggest smile, and said, “Merry Christmas,” nice and slow so he could read my lips. The light turned and, like Santa, I drove out sight.