Thursday, December 11, 2014

Picking Change Out Of My Bra In a Post-80s World.

I was reminded today of a quote I've posted here before:

"Only man is capable of work, and only man works, at the same time by work occupying his existence on earth. Thus work bears a particular mark of man and of humanity, the mark of a person operating within a community of persons. "
                                                                        ~Laborem Exercens: On Human Work - John Paul II, 1981

I love me some John Paul, but based on this, it won't be hard in the future to conclude (for the aliens who will occupy the earth after the zombie apocalypse) that he had never been through a fast food drive through in the post-80s world.

I worked at McDonalds when I was 16 and to this day, it remains a huge influence on my perception of good employment and good training. It was run like a very tight ship, and we were trained and re-trained monthly. The management at McDonald's at that time understood that the objective of the work was to serve human beings both good, safe food (stifle yourself if you feel like ranting about McDonald's - you're missing my point) and a pleasant experience in the store and at the drive through. The majority of our training was focused on the nuances of providing a good service experience and on friendliness and courtesy, and the minority was on the technical perfection that was expected of us.

Post 80's fast food franchises have as their objective total ticket times and orders per hour. The customer experience generally is not a factor.

In the 80's, we were trained to look a customer in the eye, ask them how they were doing, say yes ma'am and no sir and please and thank you. (I will say that this is still clearly the directive at Chick Fil-A, which is an exception to everything I'm about to say.)

All that was and is just ducky, but it still isn't the pinnacle of good post-80s service at a fast food counter or drive through.

The absolute TOP level of service in this current day and age is when the person "serving" you is not trying to fling your drink, your food, your three foot long receipt, your 68 coins and your three dollar bills at you all at the same time, waving their arms like a millennial baboon if you don't respond quickly enough (with what I can only assume they believe is your 8 arms and your mastery of the space-time continuum, allowing you to process all of these things and put them in their correct places in exactly one nanosecond) and then floor your vehicle, rocketing it out of their way and through time so that the next customer can have things flung at them.

We were actually trained to hand a customer their coins (which, newsflash - go in a separate container from the bills, not just into a giant Mary Poppins catch-what-is-flung-at-me-like-a-fast-pitch-softball bag) and wait until they put them away, THEN hand them their bills, and lastly, their diminutive receipt, which in the good old days was about two inches long, not three feet long. Then and only then would we ask them if they wanted condiments, put those in the bag, fold the bag over and hand it to them, thanking them for their business and telling them to have a good day. None of this was done with baboon gestures, grunting, or buffalo snorting at the inordinate amount of time a surprised customer spends picking french fries out of their eye and dropping change into their bra while trying desperately to catch an airborne iced tea with their three foot long receipt.

That's all I'm saying.

Stop it.

The world isn't going to end if you allow me four seconds to put my change in my wallet before handing me the next thing. It really isn't. And if you allow me those four seconds, I might not blog-shame you, Taco Bueno. And everywhere else besides CFA.

And can we get rid of four foot long receipts everywhere? Is that too much to ask? I wonder if millennials TP their friends' trees now with receipts instead of actual TP. I know I could lob a Michael's receipt up into a 100 year old oak tree and both ends would still touch the ground.

After I picked all the change out of my bra, I played in this week's Mix-Ability challenge, which was a spray challenge. I knew JUST what I was going to do because I have my brand spanking new Hooray It's Your Day kit from the upcoming Occasions catalog, which comes with this GORGEOUS rose die cut. These are SO pretty just stuck on colored cardstock, but I can't say goodbye to one of these so I decided to make a permanent stencil out of it and keep it forever.

To do that, I just painted both sides with gel medium. I love gel medium because it dries fast. Not fast food order time fast, but fast. I let it dry on waxed paper.

After it was dry, I taped it down to some watercolor paper with low tack tape

OOH - you know what else comes in this kit? Little wood embellishments like this one that says hello. I colored it with a black Sharpie and covered it with Crystal Effects.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. I sprayed the paper with three colors of ink spray - hot pink, orange and also Gold Glow Smooch Spritz

After it dried, I used a fine paintbrush and some Golden Iridescent Gold Deep Fluid Acrylic to paint around the flowers. I love the orange-y red and gold together. 

Pin It

Fun eh? Then I just used a little dot or two of Crystal Effects to tack down the wood element and mounted the whole thing on black cardstock.

Now this project resulted in another WAY cool technique that I'm not going to fling at you right now - because I'm better trained than that.

I'll be back tomorrow after you put your change and your receipt away to show you that wonderfulness.

In the meantime, it's been a pleasure serving you. I hope you have a great day.



  1. Questions... what was the "stencil" made out of? Card stock? And does coating it with gel medium also work if you would like to use a wet background technique such as embossing paste? I would imagine cleaning the treated stencil is still a bit tricky (like not under running water).

    1. I did run mine under water to clean it - it's completely sealed with the gel medium. It's a pretty sturday paper to begin with so I think I could even take a toothbrush to it.

  2. BTW... when I saw the kit, I instantly wanted a stencil as well. So, as usual, you are brilliant! I should always start with the compliment! :)

  3. One of your best posts evah!!!! I loved the fast food story...and of course the tip on how to convert the die cut to a stencil!

  4. This is beautiful Lydia, and you had me grinning. ( first job was burger king lol)

  5. I loved your rant!!! It drives me crazy when they put all of my change in my hand in a big wad!!! I can so identify with what you were saying. Beautiful card, by the way:)

  6. So very pretty and great idea to turn your diecut into a pretty stencil. My kids get really tired of me telling them how things used to be "back in the day" when I worked at McDonalds. I predate you by a bit with part of my employment in the late 70s but I am so with you that it was all about service back then. We also memorized our orders and made change by counting up from what the customer gave us NOT by using a computer!!!

  7. Thank you for sharing how you made a durable stencil out of the die cut! ... I love your comments on customer service, and I bet you were also trained to speak slowly and distinctly enough that the customer could understand what you were saying. Oh, for the good old days -- the dates of which change constantly.

  8. I always say save one for a template and now you have shared how to make them last even longer. Thank you so much. Now I have to dig through all my receipts to finds cents off coupons oh wait let me check my bra. Yep gell coming up.


Every time you leave a comment, a new LOLcat is born. ALSO - don't panic if you don't see your comment right away - I moderate my comments to keep those spammers out, so your comment will show up in short order. Unless you're linking me to Russian brides or Nigerian princes.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...