The Worker Bee

Jamie shoved her hips into the swinging bathroom door, her book bag falling off one shoulder and the black pants she wore yesterday hanging across her folded arms.
Ms. Betty, her overly-diligent, overly-vocal, overweight manager met her from the other side, reaching an arm above her head to prop the door open.
“You’re late,” She snarled, glaring down at the teen’s un-tucked Burger Bee’s shirt and blue jeans.
“You scheduled me right after school, Ms. Betty. I can’t get here any faster than this.”
“Get your pants on and let’s get a-movin’. Your other team members have to make up for every minute you spend socializing after your classes.”
Jamie rolled her eyes as she stumbled into the bathroom stall. Her Burger Bee’s shirt hung so long that it covered her underwear as she bounced on each leg in attempt to change within the tiny area. She rifled through her bag for her cell phone. “Shit, I forgot my nametag,” she mumbled to herself as she looked at her reflection in the screen, “Oh, well, I’m already late. Might as well go out. Maybe no one will notice.”
Upon entering the kitchen, Jamie took a deep breath, and the first car of the shift pulled up to the window. Round three million eight thousand nine hundred seventy-seven of pretending to be thrilled to take an order.
“Welcome to Burger Bees, what can I get for you?” she asked in the fake-friendly voice she was trained to speak in.
“Ya, get me a..a…burger. You know, the big one. And some fries. Oh, and extra pickles, no tomatoes, a few packages of mayo on the side.”
“Do you want the Deluxe Hive Burger or the Stinger Meal?”
“Uh, the big one, ya know. The Big Mac, or whatever you call it.”
Jamie rolled her eyes. “Sir, this is Burger Bee’s. Our largest burgers include the Deluxe Hive Burger, which has two patties, and the Stinger Meal, which is only one patty, but it’s slightly larger than the others and comes with fries and a drink.”
“You heard me, I want the big burger. I ain’t ask for two. ONNEEE BURGER. Ya’ hear me?”
“Of course, sir.”
“And what did you say my total was?”
“It depends. What did you want to drink with-“
“JAMIE!” bellowed Ms. Betty as one of the cars left the drive thru line before ordering, “What’s taking you so long with his order?”
“It’s not my fault, Ms. –“
“Wha? What chu’ say?” Jamie hadn’t realized she had pushed her microphone button.
“Nothing, sir, I just didn’t hear what you wanted to drink.”
“Give me of those honeydew shakes. Ya, gimmie one a’ those.”
“Alright, and your total is $5.39.”
“5.39! I thought this was a value menu!”
“Jamie, come on,” said Hal, as he handed her the bag of burgers for the customer in front of the Stinger man.
“Oh yeah, sorry.” She hadn’t noticed the man waiting outside of the window to pick up his food. He must have ordered right before shift change. She apologized as he handed her a five and a nasty glare.
“Have a good day,” she said in that I-am-a-robot-on-helium voice. He said nothing as he dug through his bag to make sure the order was correct before speeding off.
Jamie sighed.
“It’s because you ordered the shake, sir. Milkshakes cost a dollar more than the fountain drinks.”
“You ain’t told me that!”
“It says it on the menu, sir.”
“Don’t you be sassin’ me. I ain’t got time for your lip.”
“Would you like to change your milkshake to a fountain drink to make it cheaper?”
“Yeah, I would. Gimme’ a coke.”
“Yes, sir. Your new total is $4.39.”
As he made his way around the drive-thru, she quietly prayed that no one else would pull up for just a few minutes. It was hard enough to type in food orders, give out the burger bags, and make sure she was placing the right about of money into the register without having to speak. There was no time for drawn-out conversations with confused customers. She needed to work faster or her manager would flip.
“Here’s your Stinger Burger with fries and a coke, sir,” she said as she took the man’s credit card and swiped it through her machine.
The man opened up the bag and began unwrapping his burgers.
Taken aback, Jamie reached out to retrieve the burger and exchange it for one without pickles. She could have sworn he had asked her for extra pickles. Maybe she had heard it wrong. Or maybe he just said it wrong. Or maybe the griller read her note wrong. No matter who was at fault, it was her problem.
“What’s going on here?” Ms. Betty stomped over to the window, “You have a line of customers waiting to order, Jamie!”
“Your dumb blonde drive-thru girl can’t seem to get anything right, ma’am. She be givin’ me lip when I order and not tellin’ me stuff I needa know. And she gave me pickles. I ASKED FOR NO PICKLES. Can’t you hire people with half a brain cell? Alls you gotta do is take off the pickles. Or just don’t even put ‘em on in the first place. It ain’t rocket science!”
Ms. Betty scowled at Jamie, “Sir, I’ll have another burger for you right away.”
She went back into the kitchen and grabbed a burger from the heating shelf. After unwrapping the package, she picked off the ketchup-covered pickles and threw them into the trash can. So much for maintaining her managerial status.
When she returned to the counter, the man had already driven away.
“Well, where did he go, Jamie?” she asked.
“I don’t know Ms. Betty. He just sped away a few seconds ago. Didn’t speak another word. I guess he ran out of time to give us his lip.”
“Did you tell him to have a honey-sweet day?”
“No, because he just-“
“And why not , Jamie? You know we only keep hive-ly team members.”
“You better watch yourself, Jamie. Your guest wasn’t satisfied, and the customer is always right.”