No, really, if you “pay it forward” at the drive-through window you are really only paying for your own meal | Street Jazz

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

No, really, if you “pay it forward” at the drive-through window you are really only paying for your own meal

Posted By on Tue, Nov 19, 2013 at 12:12 PM

You don’t have to be that good at math to figure out that the last person in line for the day is going to literally make out like a bandit.

Television news, never much for deep analysis, but great for the shallow story (Ooh! Pretty pictures!) has gone quite ga-ga over the concept of “paying it forward” at the fast food drive-through window, with succeeding customers paying for the meal of the car immediately behind them.

I’m sorry, but didn’t I see a version of this several years ago, when an attractive woman bought coffee for the very attractive man behind her in a commercial for a fast food place?

It was just flirting then, I think.

Pardon me for being a stickler here, but doesn’t the whole concept of “paying it forward” mean that society as a whole benefits? I ain’t for real sure that just confining our efforts to the fast food line is really helping society all that much, myself.

Okay, maybe I’m just miffed that when I go to Hardee’s, I never get told that someone else has already paid for my coffee and chicken sandwich.

But simply “paying it forward” - or backward, as the case may be - when you are getting your caffeine and semi-meat breakfast or lunch really helping for society as a whole, and really is making a mockery of the whole notion.

As has been pointed out by more than one writer across this country, the folks who might really benefit from someone paying it forward/backward are the poor rascals who have to run around filling everyone’s orders. What a great news story that would be, if customers “paid it sideways” by slipping a few dollars towards the folks in the restaurant.

Not only would that be a more interesting story, Jacobean Reader, but it would be a great social justice story.

Yeah . . . which pretty much knocks it out of the running for being included on the evening news, recounted for us by beaming anchors.

Still, a man can dream, can’t he?


More Attempted Comedy from Richard S. Drake

I sauddenly felt the urge to rush into the studios of Fayetteville Public Access Television before we did my show last week, and recorded a joke for Short Takes, which is the service provided for all who live in Fayetteville. Need to talk about something political? Social? Environmental? Sing a song? Tell a bad joke? This is the place for you!

You can see my “performance” every day at 5pm on Channel 218 on the Cox Channel line-up - along with all the other brief pieces taped for Short Takes (Aubrey Shepherd and Dick Bennett are just two of the folks you can see this week). FPAT can also be seen on Channel 99 of AT&T’s U-Verse, which reaches viewers from Bella Vista to Fort Smith. Fayetteville Public Access TV can be seen on line at:

For information on how you can take advantage of the Short Takes service, call 444-3433.


Warning about the joke

I first heard this joke on American Forces Television while we were stationed in Germany in the early 1970s, and it takes a few minutes to tell. I once told it to Mark Swaney while we were walking along the streets of Eureka Springs, and he said, “You know, that’s the kind of joke that when you hear the end of it it, you feel violated.”

Ha! Handle puns with care . . .


Quote of the Day

There is only one thing that can kill the movies and that is education. - Will Rogers

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