I go to Chipotle pretty frequently. Chipotle has managed a particularly difficult consumer feat – making people think the quality of their product compensates for any potentially inflated pricing (kudos to Apple, Whole Foods and others for a similar accomplishment – Trader Joe’s belongs in a class by itself, considered very cheap and high quality!) I go there for convenience as much as anything – if Dos Toros was half a mile closer, it’d surely cut my Chipotle time considerably – but I also live less than four blocks from the only Chipotle test kitchen. That’s right – brown rice for me, suckas, and I tasted the short-lived chorizo before anyone else. Dos Toros might offer a somewhat better product – but I have found a balance – if you get a large side order of the extra hot hot sauce at DT, it turns a Chipotle chicken burrito into a fairly divine experience (and, for the faint of hot- is fairly f*cking hot.)
Anyway, sometimes there’s some kind of weird sh*t going on at Chipotle – today the two guys ahead of me had their burritos weighed, apparently they were settling a dispute as to the over/under of two pounds each. (Take the under.) A lot of times in my hood, there are little kids ordering sh*t all kinds of ways – on little bastard had his fruit cup added to a carnitas burrito. Most of you have faced the long lines, and generally the people in front of you know what’s what. But sometimes, you can just tell it’s gonna take an extra twenty three minutes for some dipsh*ts to navigate the line…
The Five People You Don’t Want In Line Ahead of You At Chipotle
The Thinker/Sampler – As a veteran fast casual burrito orderer, I am able to quickly communicate my order to both The Steamer (they throw the tortilla into that steamer thing and then slap some meat (and beans if you are so inclined) in there before handing it to what we used to call at Taco Bell The Stuffer. With The Stuffer, it generally takes no more than eye contact to insinuate that all that I need is hot sauce and cheese. This is not the case for everyone; heaven forbid you ever get caught behind a middle-aged ethnic lady perusing the menu as if she’s considering the names on the 9/11 Memorial – solemn glances are not a great thing when processing a burrito. Thinkers typically consider the menu with the same diligence that high school sophmores and juniors mull over their college choices.
The Sampler is a more highly evolved version of The Thinker – except they make the even more annoying choice of asking to sample the barbacoa or whatnot. Anybody ever walked into McDonald’s and tried to sample a spicy chicken to see if it’s really spicy? They’ll throw your ass out! They aren’t in the business of wooing customers with their incredible capacity for accomodation. These guys kill me – I have my order down to ten words or less – and they stand there with a stupid little cup like they’re at f*cking Baskin Robbins (where at least the ridiculously tiny taste spoons slightly diminish your self-respect.)
Potential Thinkers/Samplers – Middle-aged ethnic ladies, kids
The Perfectionist – The Perfectionist is the least common of the Chipotle misorderers, but they can cost you a significant chunk of time. They’re the people who decide that they didn’t get enough rice after their burrito has made it all the way down the line. This results in chaos/confusion as the queue gets confused and the potential for order errors increases exponentially (I once bit into the wrong burrito at Qdoba – which is why this article is only Chipotle-inclusive.) Perfectionists get incredibly upset if their cheese portion varies 1/10th of an ounce in either direction – a veritable powder keg for the poor bastard/bastardesses on the line.
Potential Perfectionists – Young women, jockies, male flight attendants
The Off-Menu Orderer – It’s a little-known secret, but Chipotle will do whatever you want. They will, literally, mix any of the sh*t they offer together for you. You want tequila and napkins inside your burrito? No problem. This is a level of customer service unlike, for instance, Taco Bell – who once refused to make me a cheesy double beef burrito because it was no longer available, despite the fact that all ingredients were just hanging out, awaiting the chance to be arranged as I requested. Chipotle will do anything that isn’t unethical – if you ask them to mate your steak with some pork, and then serve you the offspring in a tortilla, they won’t do it, because there is no way to get inter-species consent. Other stuff is no big deal, though. You want a quesadilla? You f*cking got it, homie. Do you find your burrito to be too intricately layered? Have them mix it up before wrapping it. Want it cut in half because you are so dainty and couldn’t possible consume 1450 calories at a setting? No problem, Janice.
Potential Off-Menu Orderers – Anyone who knows you can do it, Janice
The Barterer – I must readily admit to being an accomplice here – SO has moved to a trade wherein she gives up half her steak in exchange for a free half serving of guacamole. I know what you’re thinking – hey, Chilly, aren’t you making three f*cking dollars from this site every month now – why can’t you hook your lady up with a full order of guac??? Here’s my witty reply, wiseguy, she actually prefers the 50/50! However, it’s not only slightly embarassing to have to negotiate every time, but it slows me from eating my f*cking burrito! And I hate having to reestablish the bargaining points every single f*cking time! Okay, in exchange for a free half-splooge of guac, I will give you a half serving of steak, and will not take an extra 123 napkins this time through.
Potential Barterers – SO, ethnic ladies that learn guac is extra
The Tippler – I’ve actually only seen this a handful of times, but did you know that many Chipotles serve margaritas or other mixed drinks? Guess who makes them? The f*cking cashier…that won’t slow sh*t down at all…just go next door to Flight 151 and get your damned drinks! I have had a lot of drinks, and a lot of fast casual burritos, but I think I’ve had less than two alcoholic beverages at burrito fast casual joints. Don’t mix business and pleasure, ya’ll.
Potential Tipplers – This Asian girl? That’s the only picture I saw on the internet of someone drinking at Chipotle.
P.S. I’m about to start writing like a motherfuc&er, now that I’ve got like mad traffic, fetching girls reading, momentum, and all kinds of stuff…or maybe I’ll just have another drink or two…