Whimsy: February 2009 Archives

Girly man!

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Some silliness for a Friday:

It's Tollywood's (not Bollywood's) answer to "Thriller." What sounds like "Girly Man" is really the song's title: "Goli Mar" from the Telugu movie Donga. Click the song title to read the real lyrics (in Telugu) vs. Buffalax's "translation." The singer/actor is Chiranjeevi, who has received several best actor awards and last year launched a political party.

Finally, here's a Wired story about Mike Sutton of Dayton, Ohio, aka Buffalax, the YouTube user responsible for this and several other laugh-until-you're-sore mis-subtitled videos.

Please don't buy the bald seal.

Steven Roemerman noticed an unusual accent at the Mexican fast food drive-thru:

We decided to eat Taco Bueno for lunch today because it's well...more Bueno. I pulled into the drive through and noticed something interesting. Based on his accent, I determined that the gentleman who was taking my order was Indian. No not Oklahoma Indian...India Indian.

I became suspicious; when I pulled forward to pay, I asked if the gal who took my money if the person that took my order was actually in the building. She said no, that he was in a call center somewhere. "I'm not sure where," she said. I thought to myself, "Yeah, I know where it is." I bet you $10 bucks Taco Bueno's drive through call center is in India. "Thank you, come again."

Steven's e-mailed query to TB HQ about the call center location received a lengthy and polite reply but no direct answer:

Our intention is not to deprive the hard working citizens of the Tulsa community employment, but to find a solution to a lack of applicants willing to work in the quick service environment. The call center is a test to see if it can be a solution by having someone full-time, 100% dedicated, to just taking drive-thru orders. It is a response to guests' needs, but if it fails to help, we will discontinue. We have been listening to feedback for years from our guests about being shorthanded, having long waits, and inaccurate orders.

The note makes reference to other tests Taco Bueno is conducting. It's interesting click through and read the whole thing. In the comments, David Schuttler wonders if Sonic is next. I was at a Sonic the other morning, and the manager was having to take orders and deliver them because someone didn't show up to work that day. Sonic could have done a lot more business if they had someone somewhere concentrating only on order-taking.

Some questions:

What does it say about the economy that businesses are still having trouble finding workers? Are things not that bad or are people still too complacent?

What does it say about American workers if call center agents from a different culture who speak English as a second (or third) language and have probably never seen a Muchaco can do a better job of getting a food order right?

Finally, on the jump page, here's a classic from the Dr. Demento vault -- Stevens & Grdnic's "Fast Food" (1982):


The image above, the August 9, 1965, Pogo is from the Cartoon Art Originals website, which has this strip and original Walt Kelly art for many other Pogo daily strips, Sunday strips, and paperbacks.

I posted this cartoon excerpt, from Walt Kelly's Pogo Peek-A-Book, about a year ago. It's a favorite moment in a favorite tale, "The Man from Suffern on the Steppes or 1984 and All That: A Russian Tale of Madisonav," a simultaneous spoof of Soviet bureaucracy and American advertising. I've been thinking about it a lot lately and with a fair amount of empathy for the ad-man commuter here portrayed by Mr. Howland Owl.


About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Whimsy category from February 2009.

Whimsy: January 2009 is the previous archive.

Whimsy: March 2009 is the next archive.

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