Saturday, August 21, 2010

A little shocked at how ugly people are

I just went to pick up a sandwich at my local Subway, and witnessed two people, one after the other, berate a Hispanic woman behind the counter who's name tag clearly said "TRAINEE" because she didn't speak very good English.

The first person, a white lady, left because the woman misunderstood her instructions (two sandwiches at a time can be tricky for anybody), which was to put spinach on one sandwich, and olives on the other. I'm not exactly sure what went wrong but I think there was one too many conflicting instruction. She made comments to the effect of "why can't you understand me?" Maybe because you were telling her two things at once? That woman left in a huff. "I'm just going to go," is what she said. Wow, lady, if getting a sandwich is so traumatic, perhaps you should just stay home. The man who followed her made a comment to me about the woman being rude, but then when the same woman was making his sandwich, and he kept asking for "more meat" (probably figuring the woman wouldn't know enough to charge him extra for double meat), and she looked confused, he also questioned her ability to understand him. "Don't you speak English?" and "I can understand why that other woman left."

It's the "Don't you speak English" comment that pissed me off. Maybe she was just perplexed by your hectoring behavior, you asshole. 

Meanwhile, another trainee made my sandwich perfectly, and was ringing me up while the man was getting upset. Another worker (someone from the back, who spoke English and Spanish; I think she was out there mopping the floor) told the man that the woman making his sandwich understood him but that she was new, and then he freaked out and started asking for the manager. Another worker who was more experienced was polite with him and handled it from this point on in an acceptable manner, but I just wanted to get out of there. The whole thing was extremely ugly.

I smiled and thanked the other trainee but I didn't say anything about what these people said. I was polite, but I wish I'd told that man to calm the fuck down. It's just a sandwich.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that's an astounding lack of perspective. It would bum me out too.

    I was boggled a few months ago when that Facebook thing went around, the group everyone was joining which had a name like, "This is American and I shouldn't have to press #1 to speak English."

    After a week or so I noticed a bunch of people joining another group that made me laugh out loud: "I don't mind pressing #1 to speak English because I'm not an asshole."