An open letter to the staff of every Sonic I’ve ever patronized.

Let me preface this by saying that your establishments are the best place to go to purchase a quick drink. An expansive selection, highly competitive pricing (mainly during half-price happy hour), and dependable quality all contribute to what I imagine to be an impressive market share in the typically lackluster arena of ‘fast beverages.’

Nor is it intended to be an adequate homage. Because it clearly isn't. But it makes me chuckle a bit.

The Sonic chain is, after all, widely known for its appreciation of surrealism.

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get down to business. I’d like to request that you do me a very simple three-part favor. Phase one: next time you’re at work, I’d like you to look around. Do you see a blender? Perhaps it’s behind something. It may be cleverly disguised as something else, or have a misleading note attached to it (possibly saying something confusing such as “THIS IS NOT A BLENDER”), in order to prevent it from being used. Once you’ve found it, don’t do anything with it just yet, but remember that it does, in fact, exist. Also, make note of its location, to be on the safe side. It’s possible that it will camouflage itself while your attention is diverted, but, as most appliances are incapable of autonomous relocation, it will likely be where you found it.

Now, phase two: make a strawberry lime-a-kajinger, or mango fantasta-ma-whatsit, or basically any drink on the menu that’s made with ‘fresh’ fruit. I’ll wait. Once you’re done, open the lid, grab a spoon, and fish out the bits of fruit. Find a clean(ish) place to set them aside. We’ll come back to them in just a bit.

Ok. Phase three: find a straw. Pick it up. Contemplate the existence of the straw. Meditate on its function. Become one with the straw. Imagine that you are the straw, and your sole purpose is to facilitate the movement of liquid from one container to another. Your dimensions are rigid; your body is unchanging. Keeping all that in mind, look at the lumps of fruit you fished out in phase two, and answer this question: is a pulpy mass of fruit roughly the size of a baby’s fist able to fit through any straw you routinely give your customers?

Sometimes on Google image search, you strike gold.

Miss Lewinsky was more than willing to demonstrate my point. The Clintons cost extra, but it was one hundred percent worth it.

Let’s put it this way: I don’t want to be part of a circus freak show, and I’m not training for a career in gay porn, so I don’t particularly want to practice sucking impossibly large objects through straws. Typically, when I purchase a drink, it’s out of a desire to quench a thirst, and not because I’ve gone more than twenty-four hours without being humbled by an inanimate object. If I want to look like an idiot who’s losing an argument to a beverage, I’ll simply go off my meds, thank you. Now, don’t get me wrong: I do love it when the straw starts to collapse in on itself, then vacuum seals onto my upper lip when I try to abort my attempt to consume some tasty beverage, forcing me to either remove it with my hand or perform the always-suave maneuver of using my tongue to dislodge it, and it’s always a pleasant surprise when trying to coax a bit of my cool drink from its styrofoam abode results in the straw suddenly leaping forth and punching me, right smack in the uvula*, because the opposite end is clogged with fruit lumps, but what I want is thirst-quenching awesomeness, not cheap laughs for the people in the car next to me. Furthermore, let’s agree right now that any drink that requires one to stop and chew occasionally is against the natural order of things.

This is precisely why I never open the lid after I finish a limeade. The carnage...

Equal parts refreshing and frustrating! Now causes 30% more swearing!

Is a policy of “if it can’t be consumed through a straw, it doesn’t belong in a drink” out of the question? Remember the blender we located in phase one? Would it take that much longer to drop the fruit chunks into that blender and hit the “pulse” button once or twice before plunking them into a Route 44 cup? If so, can we explore the possibility of getting wider straws to accommodate the larger-than-liquid load?

Also, while I’ve got your attention, is it asking to much to ask that we revisit the “damned near everything should induce cardiac arrest” approach to rounding out the menu? It’s like a compulsion, or a conspiracy in which cardiologists actually run all the country’s fast food chains. For example, you have a salad that comes with an oversize deep-fried onion ring on top. Is that really necessary? Why not just fry the whole damn thing and scoop some ice cream on top of it. And make it snappy; it’s lunchtime.

*Googling ‘uvula’ turned up a… curious… result. People are piercing their uvulas. Because apparently, their meals don’t have enough obstacles in the region between the tongue and the esophagus, and their potential for infection wasn’t high enough before. Maybe… are there gag reflex fetishists out there? Uvula fetishists? Then again, maybe it’s a movement among tooth and gum models, to spice things up and be more easily identified in their work.

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~ by tazehim on June 17, 2009.

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