One of the great joys of my otherwise joyless life is to stride through
the front door of a certain local franchise of an Atlanta-based Mexican
fast food restaurant chain and be showered with warm greetings:
"Welcome to Moe's!" they ring out in near-unison.
And it's not
because I'm special. The employees of Moe's Southwest Grill, it is
clear, are trained to belt out this refrain to all who walk through
For a long time, however, I have been curious as to
what, if any, are the limits to this policy. Specifically, when a Moe's
employee is taking a restroom break, is he or she granted an exemption
from the requirement to bestow a cheerful greeting? Or is
there some kind of alert system within the Moe's restroom that informs
the employee when to shout out a welcome, so that he or she can do so
even behind a closed door, thereby proving how fiercely they wish to
Fortunately, today's lunch break finally brought an answer to this riddle. (Oh hell yes, you're making the jump for this!)
This afternoon I paid a visit to the Moe's in the Harbor Shops complex
off SE 17th Street in Fort Lauderdale. I received my usual chorus of
Welcomes to Moes! In the very next moment, I looked toward the
restroom. The door to the women's room opened and -- sure enough! -- a
Moe's employee emerged. I gave her an expectant glance that
communicated, in unsubtle fashion, "Where's my welcome?"
She did not greet me.
there you have it! No restroom alert system... yet. And it seems that
employees really are granted an exemption from the welcome rule while
in the restroom. Either that or the Moe's worker in question will be
hunted down by a corporate hitman and summarily fired, an example to
her colleagues of how very seriously Moe's takes their welcomes.
Next on my agenda: The Moe's
employees' reaction to my arriving just before day's end. Will they
yell out, "Moe's is closed!" in the very same dulcet tones? I very much
(A link to this blog post will be e-mailed to the corporate media affairs staffers at Moe's. I look forward to their response.)