Alternative meaning of fast food joint

Published 2:10 pm Tuesday, July 1, 2014

You just can’t make this stuff up.

While surfing the Internet recently, I ran across the following bizarre stories.

In Frederick, Maryland, a customer placing a fast-food order at a Sonic drive-in had her meal “super sized” without asking.

Or perhaps she asked for the number 9 combo…aka the “Buzz Special.”

The Frederick News-Post reported June 27 that Carla McFarland says she found a little plastic baggie in a container along with the French fries she purchased from the Sonic Drive-In. As it turned out the plastic baggie contained marijuana.

McFarland said she complained to a manager at the fast food joint (pardon the pun) and called police. She says a manager later told her an employee had been fired after saying the bag must have slipped from her apron.

The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office says it’s investigating the matter. Meanwhile, McFarland isn’t laughing. She says her two young children were in the car, within easy reach of the bag.

In another fast-food incident, a disagreement between co-workers at a McDonald’s in Salem City, NJ turned violent.

According to the NBC affiliate in south Jersey, 27-year-old Catherine Ferreira suffered a broken nose, two black eyes and a concussion at the hands of another woman, identified by police as 25-year-old Latia Harris. The latter allegedly accused the Ferreira of spreading rumors about her and her restaurant manager.

The beating, which occurred on June 24 in the presence of Ferreira’s 2-year-old son, took place in a field next to the McDonald’s. The child did reportedly attempt to kick at his mother’s assailiant, but he was also threatened bodily harm by Harris.

However, the two women and the child were not alone.

What makes this story so bizarre is that a number of adults stood and watched the assault take place, and did nothing to stop it. Their only course of action was to break out their smart phones and record the assault….and, yes, one of the videos (54 seconds worth) wound-up on social media.

Perhaps those adults forgot one important feature on their electronic devices….the phone! No one called the police. Salem City Police Chief John Pelura III said officers were later called to the victim’s home at a nearby apartment complex where they found her badly bloodied.

Judging by another story coming out of California, violence at public places isn’t just restricted to fast food joints.

On June 16, a man wielding bottles of Jack Daniels whiskey and vodka was captured on a liquor store surveillance camera in San Jose tossing the full bottles at a clerk, who chased after the man and whacked at him with a garden spade.

According to the NBC affiliate in the Bay Area, the video shows a clear view of a young man yelling at the clerk, grabbing cigarettes from the overhead counter, walking around with a case of beer and appearing to threaten the clerk with the booze.

Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Sgt. Kurt Stenderup released the video, noting he had edited out the end, which showed the attacker pummeling the clerk, before being pulled off by a customer who broke up the fight. The suspect then fled the scene, and the clerk suffered minor injuries.

The violence began, according to the video and clerk, when the man entered the store and picked up a case of beer, approaching the counter as though he were going to pay for it. He then asked the clerk how much a bottle of liquor was from behind the counter.

When the clerk went to check the price, the man went behind the counter and started grabbing bottles of liquor and cigarettes, as seen on the video.

The clerk confronted the man, who became angry, and can be seen in the video holding the liquor bottles over his head as if about to hit the clerk. The clerk can then be seen in the video chasing after the man, going after him with a spade.

As in all these cases, you just can’t fix stupid.

Cal Bryant is Editor of Roanoke-Chowan Publications. He can be contacted at or 252-332-7207.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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