30 Min Lunch Break Blues: Go-To Options For Taco Bell

 

Don’t be fooled by the five dollar Cravings Meal from Taco Bell.

It’s a trap.

It’s like the underdog fighter that’s relegated as an easy win before their music hits.

You’d be forgiven for underestimating it, especially if you’re used to conquering any of Taco Bell’s other higher-priced combos. But the Cravings Deal is as wily as an old Carny who keeps promising that you’re just one ring toss away from being a winner.

You’ll never win the bear.

The $5 Cravings Deal will leave you a regretful bloated gassy mess, pondering what led you back to this position in life and does it have any real meaning?

You’ll also feel like you’re one bad sneeze from some new underpants.

Either is okay when at home with nary a plan for the evening, but it’s horrible for a 30 minute lunch break.
No one wants to deal with hissy managers, dumb customers, and a Clock Off point that seems to never come while stuck in an existential fast food crisis. Luckily, this blog is partly about learning from my mistakes so you don’t have to suffer.

So here are four key items to keep in mind when ordering from Taco Bell on your lunch break.

1.) Whoa Big Spender

Once upon a time, the economy wasn’t too rough.

You could actually land a decent job even if your college degree was in some obscure field like Ancient Basket Weaving. Going out and being young looked more like Friends and less like Naked And Afraid. And $20 on gas could not only fill up the tank, but also net you some change. At least that’s what I assume it was like for the generations before me.

They say that the economy is recovering, which is promising, but there’s still a huge difference between recovering and recovered.

Recovered implies that we’ve already reached the state where everyone can pretty much order any of the Number Combos from Taco Bell without making a major financial decision for the next week or so. Recovering means that there’s still some of us who constantly have ten dollars left in the account to make it between now and next payday.
So when ordering from Taco Bell on your lunch break, avoid eye contact with the regular combos. In fact, they’re not even real; just some magical farting Unicorn ready to sell you magic beans.

When it comes to stretching dollars with fast food, learn the dollar menu like it’s the lyrics to your favorite pop song and you’re due to duet with its star.

2.) Mix It Up

That being said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t create your own combos. For instance, my go to most trips is a shredded chicken burrito and a cheesy bean and rice burrito. If if I’ve got a little extra in the change tray I might splurge on a taco supreme. Or I might decide on a Double Decker Taco and a regular soft taco.

The key idea is to set up a main (regular item) and partner up with a cheaper option (another regular/ 1 or less menu). Minimum is two items but never go beyond three.

Why?

For one, if you stick to this, the worst you could spend is $5 and a bit of change, but no more than that.
Two, you’ll likely be less of a bloated mess after lunch then if you got the Two Chalupa Combo with a Taco Supreme and a huge sugary drink.

Speaking of drinks.

3. Go With Water

Look your body is going to hate you anyways for even going to Taco Bell in the first place. And depending on what you order it’ll come up with some creative ways to pay you back.

Sitting in on a meeting, well how about your stomach make a symphony of loud and weird sounds whenever there’s a moment of silence?

Have to transport some product from one end of the warehouse to another, well wouldn’t it be nice to sweat like you’re in the Sahara while stepping a mere two feet?

I’m not saying you’ll be in the clear, but water is a magic, often underutilized liquid that can do wonders for lessening a lot potential post lunch blows. You should have it with every meal really, but especially during lunch.

3568015276_a341d41126_b

If you need caffeine, you should already be stocked at work with coffee or an energy drink. Bonus points if you remedy this with a V8 Fusion Energy. You’ll have the smug pedestal of looking slightly better than your supervisor with the 64 Ounce Big Gulp of God Knows What. And that granola eating Becky with the weird name, dyed hair, and marijuana bouquet—seriously how has no one drug-tested her yet?—might give you minor props, which could open the door her dealer, boyfriend bartender, or ridiculously hot friend who works at Whole Foods.

Even in service fields, networking is essential.

4. The Only Time To Ever Order The Ten Taco Deal…

…Is if you’re trying to share it with the rest of your co-workers…or if you got fired.
Excess is acceptable only in sharing or shame.

American Idiot 2: Electric Boogaloo

 

I can’t help but think that somewhere, there’s a band coming up with the most politically charged album of this generation.

The band members will consist of minorities, both racial and religious, as well as wear one of the letters from LGBT like an honorable badge bestowed from God, as they should.

They will not look anything like Green Day, Anti-Flag, or even those bands’ current children.

Their legit fear of a society run by a Trump Administration and the Alt-Right, and normalized into the current evolution of neo-nazism will drive them to plot, perform, and produce an album that sounds as if its the most important action they’ll ever take because for them it is.

Passion will drip from every chord; each lyric won’t be lines for a poem but of a personal new bible.

Each live concert will come off less as a means for a good time, and more of a sermon for the personal survival of the true disenfranchised.

Their work will move a few critics to tears.

And it’ll only sell a few thousands because three “attractive” punk white dudes will come along, dumb down their sound, lazily adopt their ideals, and have a distribution deal that places them on iTunes, Walmart and radio stations.

This doppelgangers will become mainstream stars, whose aggressive Rage Against Da Man take will feel ironic once its blasted in the realms of Red State Monster Truck Rallies, Amateur MMA Bouts and wherever else Breaking Benjamin is sold.

Someone will do what Yeezus did to Death Grips.

And the band that made a passionate soundtrack to oppression from fascism and racism will never have to worry about selling out thanks to the thieves who studied their album like cliff notes for a dense book report, and made it more record company friendly.

Part of me will grimace in my car–with the stereos playing their faux pro-revolution soundtrack–while cop number 13 million pulls me over again for looking suspicious while driving.

But hey, at least THAT still beats alternative’s current 4.5 inch hard-on for folk Americana and lazy house music.

Pokemon GO To Work

I sometimes wonder about the people who were not Macarena enthusiasts when the dance craze first premiered.

Historical accounts—by which I mean VH1 Remember Specials—often depict the Macarena as this unstoppable and unavoidable phenom that had everybody doing the simple arm motions, safe hip-shaking and vocal conclusions of “Heeyyyy Macarena, Alright!”

But this isn’t the whole picture.

Not everyone was joining in the trend. We never really hear much about opposing or indifferent souls because the ones who recorded this slice of pop culture history were the ones who performed the dance in the high school gyms, churches, and wedding receptions across America.

Who cares if Janet was a wallflower during this moment in her Prom? What perspective could she really offer? She might have watched others, but did she really live it?

Last Thursday at work, I cared about Janet because I realized I was becoming her. As everyone of my coworkers rushed into my workspace, excitedly clamoring at the thought of a Pikachu in their midst, I looked at my busted Windows Phone with such disgusted disdain. People of different ages, race, gender, religions, and political followings were yelling and hollering in chaotic unison like a bunch of third graders entering the playground for recess. Folks who had probably said no more than five words to each other in the years they’d work together were comparing their levels and battles in novel detail. Here was pop culture history being written right in front of my eyes, and I couldn’t become a co-author because of my decision to buy the cheapest phone on my plan years ago. History is for those that can afford it.

If I were able to contribute a piece on this, I’d say that work has taught me more about Pokemon GO’s mainstream cultural invasion than the host of news stories, Twitter Posts, and Hillary Clinton. I’ve learned essentially, that Pokemon GO is like carrots. It can be good for you in numerous ways, but too much of it can turn your skin orange.

On the positive side, I can’t deny its place as a type of person unifier. My manager was joking and laughing with one of my colleagues over their collection and treks to catalog these virtual pocket monsters.

But not even two days before that, my colleague was venting to the rest of the team over my manager, and calling him things like “Whiny punk ass jerk,” “Baby-Carrot Penis” and other lovely insulting combos probably not fit to type.

Who knows if this employment peace treaty will last more than a week? Still, it was nice to see them get along for a spell.

On the other side of the coin, Pokemon GO can be way too distracting, especially for a place of work. I mean while I was trying to focus and get my job done, dozens of people were crowding around, neglecting their own duties just for a chance at capturing a Pidgey. Look, I’m all for having fun, but when Payroll is stopped to catch Pokemon instead of fix my paycheck, I got concerned. I can’t pay off my crushing debt on them leveling up.

Still, maybe I’d be more relaxed about all this if I had an android instead of a Windows phone.