Tuesday, December 05, 2006
The Soda Fountain.
I noticed the other day while trying to fill my drink at Burrito Heaven (read: Chipotle) that people get really uncomfortable at the soda fountains in restaurants. Everyone's just trying not to be rude to the next person...
It dawned on me because i am a firm believer that more than 1 person can fill up a drink at the same time. Theres plenty of room for two people to fill up their drinks and be on their way. But there are some rules that i've come up with that can help you get through the soda machine boggle faster, and friendlier.
1.) If your preferred soda is on the end (usually both coke, or both pepsi), then position your body so that it is not directly in front of the entire machine. Sort of like a reach in and push the button from the side of the machine manouver. Once you have taken your position and begun to fill your cup with a tasty beverage, make eye contact with the next person in line, and give them a kind, soft look which says to them "it's ok if you start to fill your ice and/or your soda, i have left this whole other side for you to sneak in and fill your cup." You can even give them the old hand gesture that leads them from them, to the soda machine... you know, the slightly cupped and, long broad stroke of the arm... Just be friendly about it... and there will be no soda mishaps.
2.) If you are on deck to get soda, and notice that the person is filling their cup on the opposite side of the ice/your soda, then go ahead and start your filling... But you must make sure that you give the person in front of you a reassuring smile that you aren't going to pick the soda that's directly next to theirs.
3.) Being the on-deck person can be tricky... especially if the ice is in the center of the machine. i generally give the person a 2 soda buffer zone before i start any filling of ice. If you want to start your soda filling venture early, the current soda go-er must have his body positioned to where you can have access... cause there are some people who think that while they're filling up, they are the boss of the machine and no one should be filling up at the same time as them. In this case, i generally just wait and let them have their fun, all the while i'll probably look back and give the person behind me a look that says, "look at this asshole taking up the whole soda machine" in a very mocking way.
4.) If you take a trip to the soda machine with a buddy, you both should have full access of all of the variations of soda without having to worry about spacing or distance... if "Steve" wants Hi-C punch, and I want root beer, and they are directly next to each other... we can both fill our sodas without having to worry about rudeness or being in the way. This should go for all groups, 2 at a time people.... 2 at a time...
5.) For refills: If there is a person who just purchased their meal and has a dry empty cup, fresh off of the stack, then i will generally position myself behind them for a refill. Because you know how pissed off you get when someone who's already enjoyed the pleasures of Mt. Dew Code Red from the fountain gets in front of you while you're trying to get to your Dr. Pepper. I try to avoid that for at least 1 happy customer.
6.) If the person in front of you is getting your soda... there's nothing you can do, take a number and wait your turn.
7.) And lastly, if your preferred soda is out, just pick your next favorite... cause no one likes the person who sits around waiting for the people to change the syrup for the sodas. Makes you seem needy (which isn't a good look for you).
Follow these rules, and you and I can both be on our way in less amount of time for the same amount of soda.