Wednesday, August 27, 2008
I was reading Indianapolis Monthly magazine today and in her column, Editorial Director Deborah Paul reported on a few things that might be included in her blog, if she did indeed blog. The following entry jumped out at me:
"Diet Coke is the best thing ever invented." She goes on to admit that when she orders a Diet Coke in a restaurant and the waiter says "Is Diet Pepsi okay?," she always says yes. "...but really it isn't. Diet Pepsi isn't okay," says Paul.
Well, I was high-fiving that statement so I felt compelled to write her and let her know how much I agreed with her. Like she cares what I think. But I e-mailed her anyway. Not only did I let her know that I agree with her, but I laid out my sob story that Chick-fil-A no longer offers regular Diet Coke.
"You know what else is not okay?," I wrote to Mrs. Paul. "Coke Zero. Much to my chagrin, Chick-fil-A has changed their beverage offerings. Caffeine Free Diet Coke, Coke Zero or regular Coke. I am not a coffee drinker -- I need my morning caffeine to have bubbles in it. So the Chick-fil-A menu choices do not work for me."
Now, just so you dear blog readers (all 7 of you) don't think I was barking up the wrong tree -- though if Mrs. Paul wanted to throw the power of the media behind my Diet Coke crusade, I woudn't argue, please know that I have also e-mailed Chick-fil-A with my concerns. (Hmmm...beginning to think a reordering of my priorities is warranted.)
Remembering that criticism is best swallowed with a little sugar, I offered up a compliment first:
Dear Chick-fil-A: I visited one of your restaurants this morning on my way to work and I was served by two delightful older gentlemen. Bill cheerfully took my order in the drive thru. Then Mark, equally cheerful, handed me my food. It was quite obvious that they both were having a good time and were ready to pass those positive attitudes along to customers. That was the great part of my visit. The NOT so great part was that I was dismayed to learn that my regular Diet Coke is not on the menu any more. I am a Diet Coke purist and to only have the option of caffeine-free Diet Coke (generally acceptable, but not when I need my morning boost) or Coke Zero (BLECH!) is enough to make me choose another restaurant if I plan to visit during the breakfast hours. Please -- keep Bill and Mark and bring back REAL Diet Coke!
Thank you for taking the time to contact Chick-fil-A. You are very important to us, and we appreciate your positive feedback. We want you to have a great dining experience each time you visit our Chick-fil-A stores. We will forward your kind comments to the Operator of our Pyramids restaurant, so he can share them with his Managers and Team Members. We think it's a good thing when we can let them know how much our Chick-fil-A customers really appreciate their smiles, efforts, and courteous service. Regarding your comments about the availability of diet Coke at this location, I hope you find the following information helpful. Chick-fil-A proudly serves many Coca-Cola brands of soft drinks, freshly brewed iced tea, and our own fresh-squeezed lemonade at all of our locations. However, based on customer demand, the local Operator of the restaurant may choose to offer additional soft drink brands. If you have a favorite Coca-Cola brand product not currently offered, I would encourage you to let the Operator know. We look forward to serving you at one of your local Chick-fil-A Restaurants again soon.
So I'm thinking about picketing to speak out for the rights of Diet Coke purists everywhere (or at least on the NW side of Indy). Let me know if you'd like to join me!