Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Soda Machine or Evil Plot? I've Got My Suspicions....

Okay so there's something wrong with my Internet speed and the blogger website. And by something wrong I mean that I have an incredibly slow Internet connection and the blogger website doesn't like it. (But in reality, this is much better than before we got the jet pack and didn't have Internet at home so I'm not really complaining. I'm just sort of explaining the situation.) I'm sorta bummed that I can't load pictures to the blog.  I tell myself that it gives each post a little something extra but in all actuality, it probably just distracts people from the fact that I could have written more. Or written better. The only cure for this is practice.  I guess that means I'll have to quit my job and blog full time.  I'll be knocking on your door later looking for a place to stay since I won't be able to afford my house anymore.  I have a daughter, husband, a chihuahua, and they will all be joining me. Oh, and I like fresh flowers in my room daily.  Just thought you'd like to know in advance.

So tonight's thought fest is on choices.  Choices are good, right?  I think they are too.  But.....can you have TOO MANY choices?  Have you ever been in a situation when all the choices took the joy of the moment away?  And let's not even mention how irritated everyone else is when a decision can't be made.  If you want to start an argument in a group simply start a conversation with , "So, where does everyone want to eat?"  Let the chorus of,  "I don't care. Where do you want to eat?" ensue......But I digress.  Back to choices. 

Tonight my family ate at the new Firehouse Subs restaurant.  It just opened a couple of days ago and we were curious.  I've never been to a Firehouse Subs place before, so I don't know if this is typical or not, but this place doesn't have a drive thru.  Ironically, it's also next door to a gym.  I'm betting that Firehouse Subs will be getting lots of business from people either after they work out or those that plan on eating first, then working out but forget to go workout and end up going home.  But back to the experience.  I'm not familiar with the menu and was a little apprehensive when I looked in the place and it looked like it was full of smoke.  When I opened the door and went inside I was happy to note that nothing smelled like it was burning.  I later found that they steam a lot of their sandwiches so get good food and a sauna experience at the same time.

There were a few people in line ahead of us, but mostly that was people staring up at the menu board trying to decide what to eat.  I noticed they had 10 choices for their combos and then a few other cold sandwiches on their menu.  There were lots of side items and other information about adding items to your order for nominal amounts.  So far, so good.  I decide to order a brisket sandwich (it's the #10 combo), I picked my chips (jalapeno flavored kettle chips) and then got my cup.  I took it over the soda machine and this is where our story takes a steep nosedive.

You see, Firehouse Subs in Starkville has a Coke Freestyle soda machine.  Just one machine.  You're saying "So what?"....right?  Well, for those of you that just came out from under the same rock I was living under and don't know about the Coke Freestyle machine, let me enlighten you.  Soda machines have now gone hi-tech.  This soda machine is about the size of regular soda vending machine.  Except it has ONE SPICKET and it has a TOUCH SCREEN. And about a MILLION flavor options.  Sounds good so far right?  Except for the fact that there's only one spicket.  One spicket. One spicket for everyone in the entire place.  What I found was that the line to get your drink was as long or longer than the line for food.  I can only imagine how kids (and probably some adults) will find it necessary to add both grape and peach flavoring to their Diet Vanilla Cherry Coke.  Or perhaps they'll want to mix both Diet Lemonade with fruit punch and Dasani water that has added carbonation and grape flavoring.  Either way, you have confused people who have difficulty making choices holding up the entire drink line.  This machine is also the place to get ice, so it's not like you can munch on the ice you got from somewhere else while you wait for the drink line to get freed up. 

Now hear me out..I thought the machine was interesting. Touch screens...fancy lighting....what's not to like?  And I'm sorta a newbie at the Freestyle machine.  I've seen it one other time at a deli in Jackson.  The drink line was always longer than the food line there too.  Which is a lot like what I saw tonight.  Gone are the days of just picking your base drink:  Coke, Sprite, Diet Coke, and then something else (Orange, Dr. Pepper, Mountain Dew.)   And it's a shame really.  Because when that ONE SPICKET stops working, no one will get any drinks.  So my feeling is that in the area of soda machines, we need fewer choices and more spickets. 

If you want choices, go to Sonic.  They have like a gazillion different drink combiations.  I'm pretty sure they have more than one machine too.  Also at Sonic, you can go through the drive thru or pull up to one of the slots available.  If you do the pull up spots, you don't feel like you're in line behind anyone.  And side bonus....they have happy hour every day from 2-4 with drinks half off.  You want fancy drinks, go see the good people at Sonic.  And they have awesome ice, but that's a different post for a different day.

I guess in my rant I didn't mention anything about my food. My sandwich was fabulous and the chips were good.  The drink on the other hand....well, it was a little overrated.  It's an evil plot....and it's name is Freestyle Coke. 


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