Global Warming, Fat Butts and Drive Throughs

I’ve got a theory.  Drive throughs should be outlawed.

The other morning I was setting in Greenlife, sipping my coffee, reading the paper as I  watched some folks that are convinced that the world is warming up and that mankind is to blame.  They were holding a rally on the edge of the parking lot.  Or was it a protest?  I can never tell the difference between rallies and protests.

Then the rally was over.

I watched in amazement as the people leaving the global warming thingy drove across the street to the Bojangles on Merrimon Avenue.  Not one that I saw got out of their car and went inside to order their food.  Nope, they sat in a line at the drive thru, their motors idling, their four cylinder, bumper-sticker covered cars spewing more carbon and global warming crap into the air while their arteries clogged in anticipation of that mouth watering sausage biscuit they were about to devour.

On average, they sat in line for three minutes each.  I could feel the globe warming even as I watched.  Then I got to thinking and wondering about how much of a waste the drive through was.

The way I figure it, drivers collectively waste about $33,000.00 a year in gas just waiting in line for food at one drive through food emporium.  That’s an awful lot of money to burn up waiting for a burger, fries and a coke while there’s table inside that are going vacant.

Seems like half the time I go to a McDonald’s or some such fine dining establishment there’s a long line in the drive through and the inside of the store isn’t busy at all.  The only folks using the drive up window should be the disabled and those parents with 3 kids in the car.  Doesn’t that make sense?  What’s so difficult about that.

Then I got to doing some reading.  Found out that I’m not alone after all in this brilliant idea.

Folks a whole lot smarter than me have been saying for along time that drive throughs add to pollution, wasted resources and widening hips.  I guess American’s are really concerned about their environment and health – except when it comes to convenience.

Is the drive through really faster?

In a valid, scientific, instrument rated test, I got busy and went on down to Bojangles during lunchtime on Tuesday to see just how the drive through compared to getting someone’s fat butt out of the car seat and waddling inside.

There were nine vehicles in line at the drive through window.  The redneck in front of me was in one of those monster-truck-wanna-bes.  While he was waiting in line, he kept one foot on the clutch and would frequently rev the engine.  Guess he wanted to impress the cute little red haired girl in the drive through window with the size of his – motor.  When it was his turn, he lurched to the window way too fast and stopped too far away to grab the bag from the cute little red haired girl.  He had to lean way out the window to get his bag of artery chocking cholesterol and the little bit of change.  Yah, cool.  Way cool.

The total time for the hocky puck in the monster-truck-wanna-be waiting in line?  Nine minutes.  And that didn’t include the time spent sticking the change into his jean pockets AFTER he left the drive through window.

Me?  I went inside and ordered a egg and sausage biscuit and a cup of coffee.  It took seven and a half minutes.  7.5 minutes from car to inside to car.  Sure, it wasn’t that much faster, but that was 7.5 minutes the car wasn’t idling and burning up gas and burping global warming stuff into the air.

I figure if this herd of environmentalists that are walking around bellowing about global warming would just get their fat fannies out of the car and go inside, then our dependence on imported oil would quit being an issue along with the fear that the planet is warming up.

Well, that’s it for now.  Stay tuned.  Next week I address the only safe answer to your wife’s question: “Do these pants make my hips look big?”

Jerry Nelson is a freelance photojournalist living in Asheville, North Carolina.  He has traveled the world documenting the tears, joys, laughter and lives of people everywhere.  He currently focuses his attention and his camera on people, places and things in the United States.  A portion of the proceeds from each photo shoot is donated to organizations that help the homeless in the communities in which he works.  You can see more of his photography by clicking here.

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