March 9, 2002
3:14 PM   Subscribe

Think your life sucks? Take a trip through a day in the life of a Canadian McDonald's employee with this great simulator.
There's more to it than that first animated gif, click the 'simulator' button below...
posted by TiggleTaggleTiger (25 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
P.S. - Sorry if I offended anyone that works in McDonald's.
posted by TiggleTaggleTiger at 3:18 PM on March 9, 2002

the canadian mcdonald's worker only makes six hamburgers a day???

this must indicate that something is seriously wrong with our much loved neighbors to the north.

seen it before, but always fun to see again.
posted by fishfucker at 3:30 PM on March 9, 2002

Sorry if I offended anyone that works in McDonald's.

It hardly seems possible to me to that anyone who's ever worked at one could find anything good to say about it. I worked as a fry cook at a university MickeyD's and it was hands-down the worst job I've ever had...even worse than the other gig I put myself through school with: scrubbing toilets at a ball-bearing factory. I'd go home at 3am covered in grease spatter after a night of being yelled at by nitwit managers wearing red paper hats to distinguish them from the peons wearing blue paper hats. At bar time, the place would fill up with obnoxious, drunken fratboys who'd puke up their Big Macs in the parking lot five minutes after consuming them. I couldn't even drive by a McD's for years afterwards without feeling my gorge rising at the smell of their burgers.

This site doesn't even begin to address the feeling of hopelessness that overwhelmed me as a McDonald's employee; it was like being a lost soul in the depths of culinary hell.
posted by MrBaliHai at 4:06 PM on March 9, 2002

Brilliant link, TTT.
posted by gleuschk at 4:14 PM on March 9, 2002

It hardly seems possible to me to that anyone who's ever worked at one could find anything good to say about it.

I worked at McDonalds for three years, and I thought it was a great job. Seriously - I loved it. Not to say that I don't like what I'm doing now - but there was something really enjoyable about working at a fast food joint. I wouldn't be surprised if I work at one again some time just for a laugh.
posted by SilentSalamander at 4:43 PM on March 9, 2002

Incidentally - I don't know how they do things in Canada, but in the US we made Macs 6 at a time - my personal record was 46 seconds for a half dozen.
posted by SilentSalamander at 4:45 PM on March 9, 2002

Hey, that guy stole my idea! Well, not really. But they're similar, at least.
posted by jragon at 5:09 PM on March 9, 2002

I once accidentally smacked myself in the head with a ball peen hammer. I kinda liked it. In fact, I once smacked myself in the head six times in 46 seconds. That's a personal best. It's been a while since I whacked my noggin with a ball peen hammer, but don't be surprised if you see me at the Home Depot one day, bleeding from the melon and giggling like a madman.
posted by Optamystic at 5:09 PM on March 9, 2002

Canada has McDonalds?
posted by sharksandwich at 6:08 PM on March 9, 2002

I think it's actually called MacDonwalds. It's owned by the company that owns Poulet Frite Kentucky. That was a seriously amazing link though. The sense of hopelessness is pretty devastating. I suppose working at MD wouldn't be so bad...but if you did it for an entire month without doing anything else...that would suck...royally.
posted by Settle at 6:15 PM on March 9, 2002

Oh and by the way, you were all stealing THIS idea:

jerk your own adventure. It is very funny. You arive at your apartment in northern california after work....and you jerk your own adventure. Professionally done.
posted by Settle at 6:16 PM on March 9, 2002

i like the dream sequence... nice touch
posted by sixtwenty3dc at 6:21 PM on March 9, 2002

This site doesn't even begin to address the feeling of hopelessness that overwhelmed me as a McDonald's employee; it was like being a lost soul in the depths of culinary hell.

Been there, done that, BaliHai. Your right, the site scratches the surface but does not plumb the depths.Only my adventures in Fast Food Hades where at McDonald's pseudo-upscale cousin American Steak House where I spent 2 years in high school working as a busboy and dishwasher.
The joint is unaccountably popular with the Sunday Afternoon get-yer-grub-on after church holy roller crowd. They'd all come in wearing impeccably pressed Sears Roebuck suits and carrying Bibles. There must be something about eating dog-food grade beef that makes you feel especially spiritual.
It was also my introduction to the chamber of horrors that is the Hobart Conveyor Style Dishwasher. That thing sprayed such enormous quantities of detergent-laden hot water that I went home with skin so pink that I looked as if I'd been poached. Not to mention the steak juice aroma clinging to me guaranteed that I'd be followed home by several stray dogs.
The nadir of hopeleness was reached the day one of my co-workers was happy to the point of singing that we had switched from Comet to Soft Scrub. I decided that day that it was either quit or commit suicide.
posted by jonmc at 7:29 PM on March 9, 2002

Damn, I keep screwing up and putting on the second patty before the middle piece of bun.
posted by eyeballkid at 7:34 PM on March 9, 2002

No McDonalds, but I did work at a pizza joint in Chicago when I was a kid. The worst job ever? Traps. Not as many know this, but restaurants have very large traps built into their sink drains, due to the vast quantities of crap that get sent down them. The ones in Garibaldi's Pizza were about five foot deep, and once a year, they had to be emptied. Imagine, if you will, a five foot deep pit filled with the foulest grease, food, and slop that a restaurant would flush down the drain, all festering (heh) in the dark for a YEAR.

Triple-time and a $50 bonus, plus beer for an all-night shift to clean them out, crew of four - two bailers, a rinser and a guy to wheel the 40 gallon bucket out to the shit-truck. You pop the lid on one of those traps, the first thing you see is a layer of roaches; once they've scattered (we'd stomp as many as we could), you get the smell, which lasts only a few seconds before your nose is overwhelmed (thankfully); to defunkify the resturants before opening, we'd spray industrial sized containers of Ozium, 3-4 apiece, burn them all right down to empty before we'd leave; finally, we used beer pitchers to bail the grey-green filth out, 42 ounces at a time; fill a bucket, hauler takes it out to the truck, 4-5 buckets a trap, 4 traps a night for two nights.

Good money, but gawd. Dumbass kids, we fought to be on the crew. It was only trap-filth right? Washes right off. My ma used to make me wash it off outside, with a hose, and strip down to my drawers before she'd let me in the house.
posted by UncleFes at 10:07 PM on March 9, 2002

As a mediating opinion, I worked at McDonalds for three years, more or less. And it was sometimes really bad, and sometimes really good, which all depended on the quality of the other employees and our bosses.

When we had the cool bosses, who'd make jokes and employees who'd actually help and talk and stuff, it was great. When we had a bad boss, life was hard, and ditto for worthless employees. The customers sucked, but that was normal, and was pretty easy to deal with.

And generally, you'd make Macs two parts at a time, up to six or so. You don't have the pieces all on top of each other, put the two bun bits side by side and make them like that. Faster that way. I don't know how many I could make in a time, but I was kinda fast.
posted by stoneegg21 at 11:09 PM on March 9, 2002

I've never worked at McDonald's itself, but I've had enough shitty jobs that I could relate to this simulation in a major way. When that button pops up, indicating that you will now get the special sauce for the third burger, and you know that you are going to have to keep tediously clicking for each additional ingredient of each burger one at a's such a realistic illustration of the hellish frustration you feel in such a moment that it's scary.
posted by bingo at 11:37 PM on March 9, 2002

What I really found depressing is that, after I spent all day making hamburgers, my only options after supper were to watch tv, write in a journal, or go to sleep. No reading, no fingerpainting, no *gasp* internet!
posted by JanetLand at 9:43 AM on March 10, 2002

I worked at the McDonald's in the Metro Toronto Zoo back in the mid-80's. It was located near the visiting Koala exhibit. It set the North American record for most sandwiches (burgers/chicken/fish/etc) in one hour. Some ridiculously huge number that can't possibly be correct, like 600 or 800. That store held the record until Expo '86 and their 200' long counter McDonald's.

I worked either at the bun tray, burgers or McNuggets/fries during that summer. There was never time to think properly. Even if you were lucky and they stuck you on floors (meaning you cleaned the garbages and mopped the floors in the eating area), it was go-go-go-go the whole time. For $2.75/hr. Canadian. And I was happy to get so much money ($100/wk after taxes/overtime).

One thing working at McDonald's taught me is that no matter how busy/stressful my current job is, it's nothing compared to what I went through when I was 15. Not even close.
posted by Grum at 10:15 AM on March 10, 2002

Where are the onions? "Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a sesame-seed bun." I don't see any onions.

And isn't the special sauce really Thousand Island dressing?
posted by kirkaracha at 10:40 AM on March 10, 2002

One thing working at McDonald's taught me is that no matter how busy/stressful my current job is, it's nothing compared to what I went through when I was 15. Not even close.

I worked at a McDonald's for three years. After that I went into Retail where I worked with people who had never worked in Fast Food. When it would get busy around Christmas time, people would try telling me how retail was so bad, and I would just tell them that it was never as bad as working in a fast food restaurant.

Grill, though you came home smelling of grease, was never as bad as Drive-Thru where the orders can never be brought out fast enough for the customers.
posted by drezdn at 10:41 AM on March 10, 2002

In a way I think it's a good thing that these jobs suck so bad. It prompts you to move up from it. I worked at a movie theater, and its the worst job I ever had - I would do anything in my power to avoid that crap again.
posted by owillis at 11:23 AM on March 10, 2002

Awesome link! If you liked it, READ Fast Food Nation. (Warning: reading Fast Food Nation will make you avoid fast food like the plague. I haven't eaten any since, and I don't eat beef anymore. For most of us, however, it's a healthy choice, anyway). McDonalds treats their animals poorly as well as their employees. And they love to break unionizers. Even in Canada.
posted by gramcracker at 1:27 PM on March 10, 2002

i worked at a zoo scooping ice cream. ice cream and feeding the monkeys for lunch. so bad :) and the people you'd see on second tuesdays!
posted by kliuless at 5:24 PM on March 10, 2002

Got laid off from my job as a technical writer Friday, so who knows? I may soon renew my high-school acquaintance with the world of the fast-food service industry. :o(
posted by alumshubby at 5:47 PM on March 10, 2002

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