Re: Re: Unsettling Fast Food Conversation – 8/18

Home Forums Motivation Station Writing Prompts and Challenges Unsettling Fast Food Conversation – 8/18 Re: Re: Unsettling Fast Food Conversation – 8/18


TK Handler

A very old and haggard Prof.Burton pulled up to the welcoming lights of “Nacho Whistle,” his favorite pseudo-Mexican fast-food joint. His students and colleagues would believe he was a lover of only the finest wines and the kinds of meals that require multiple forks, but this was far from the truth. Burton liked his food crispy and slathered in beans, sour cream, and salsa. He brought his car around to the second menu board, now needing to ponder over the first one since he knew exactly what he wanted. The familiar click following by static greeted him, and then the faint, wheezy, and slightly ill-sounding voice of a young man, “Thank you for choosing Nacho Whistle…ugh…how can I…uhnnn…help you?”

Prof. Burton had long learned it was best just not to ask and began to place his order.

“I’ll have a Triple-Decker Cheesy Beany Spicy Crunchster and a White-Hot Supernova Nuclear Meltdown, hold the guacamole.”

The boy on the other end was groaning painfully, making it even harder to understand him than usual. “Would you…oooo…like combos with either of…ugh…either of those, sir?”

“No, thank you!” replied Prof. Burton quickly, hoping to get this over with as soon as possible.

“You realize…those items…urgh…contain soy, dairy, and wheat products?” asked the boy, “We’ve had some…bad run-ins…uhn…with allergies…”

“I can imagine,” said Prof. Burton, strongly wishing that he couldn’t.

“So you’re going to…oh, oh ow…you’re gonna have the Triple…Decker…Cheesy…blurgh…!”

“Son? Son!” called Prof. Burton, prompted more by his extreme discomfort than his concern, “You don’t sound so well, maybe you need to have a break.”

“Yes, sir,” said the boy, sounding relieved, but still in extreme pain, “Hold on, please.”

Prof. Burton heard a beep then a frantic clatter, but the static remained. Then, faint voices were barely audible over the speaker.

“Marco, you gotta take this customer,” said the voice of the cashier.

“Hey, what’s wrong with you?” asked another voice, probably this “Marco” character.

“Terrible…stomach…pain…,” gasped the cashier, “Feel…sick…!”

“Aw man! I told you! I TOLD you!” said Marco, sounding quite pleases with himself despite the circumstances.

“Aw, shut it Marco!”

“Admit it! Admit I was right!” demanded Marco joyfully.

“No way!”

“I won’t let you by if you don’t!”

A loud scuffle ensued, filled with loud shouts of “Come on, man!” and “I gotta go!” but Marco was obviously refusing to back down. Despite his better judgment, Prof. Burton was curious as to just what Marco had been right about.

“All right, all RIGHT!” panted the boy, “You were right, okay?”

“Ha!” laughed Marco, “I told you those tomatoes had the salmonella in them! I TOLD you!”

“Whatever, man…,” said the cashier. A really awkward silence followed, an Prof. Burton could not detect that anyone was moving. A few second later, Marco asked, “So…don’t you need to go to the bathroom?”

The boy’s reply was so sheepish and incoherent that it took Prof. Burton a minute to realize what he had said.


“What? Aw SICK DUDE!” said Marco, his voice indicated that he had plugged up his nose, “Go home and change, man, that’s disgusting!” Marco cursed and swore his way up to the drive-through window and put on the wired headset. He noticed with curiosity that the red light was still lit on the speaker, but he thought nothing of it.

“Hello, sir, sorry for the wait,” he said, like everything was normal, “So you’re going to have the Triple-Decker—,”


Marco glanced out the window just in time to see a car squeal out of the drive through and down the street.