Sunday, May 17, 2009

We All Scream for Ice Cream

It's the long weekend and I don't have to work tomorrow! And today I had ice cream. Not in a bowl at home, but out with family and friends at a cone place. On a hot day, the ice cream cone joint is always ahopping and this was no exception for us. We all enjoyed our ice cream experience, but it did get me to thinking...

We last dealt with the grocery store line-up and people weaseling their way into the express line. When it comes to line-ups, why is there no standard protocol? There's the grocery store guess-the-fastest-cashier method (also used at McDonalds and A&W). There's the bank line-up method in which there is one line and when a teller becomes available the next person in line gets helped (used by Wendy's and Tim Hortons). Meat fans will be familiar with the deli method of taking a number (not used by any fast food joints). Lastly there is the free-for-all method favoured strangely by ice cream counters. This is when it comes down to who catches the employee's attention first gets the attention first (also in use at Cob's bread).

Seems to me we should reach some consensus on this whole line-up thing and whenever possible use the methods that are clearly fairer and less annoying. I say we go with the bank method except where we need to view the product options carefully (the deli, butcher shop, or ice cream place for example) and in those cases we try and be civil and let the person who has been there longer than us get served before us. And boo the weasels who try and get the cone guy to scoop their cone before their turn.

Now a story about ice cream...

Most people get pretty excited about cone places that really pile it on the cone. Those where the definition of a single scoop is stretched to the breaking point. So it was with me, as I stopped for ice cream on the way home from work one day. I excitedly brought the cone back to my car and began the drive home on what was a very windy road.

Now the top of this cone was massive and the bottom was just one of those regular type ice cream cones that you can buy out of a box at the grocery store. About three corners into my trip it was a hard turn to the left. That was it for the cone as the gravitation forces snapped the top off and sent the ice cream portion flying to the floor on the passenger side and left me holding the empty bottom of the cone. Another lesson learned about greed.


  1. Perhaps the lesson is more about gluttony. Like the time I had the large pasta and then a piece of cheesecake at Pagliacci's. That was a lesson learned.

  2. I think the lesson you learned is about g- and centrifugal forces, cuz I bet that the next time somebody overloads your cone, you won't ask them to take a little off the top (like a barber). Instead, you'll take the time to eat enough of the ice cream to allow you to take that sharp left with impunity.

  3. The best ice cream in the world is Cornish Ice Cream, it's made in Cornwall in the south of England. Very creamy and weird sorta yellow colour? Cheers, xelA.

  4. One thing Lisa and I were looking forward to in moving to this part of the city was being just a couple blocks from our favorite old Italian gelato place, after moving we realized that it's now a wine bar, catering to all us yuppie types taking over the neighborhood.

    I've heard about a queueing system common in Cuba (and some other countries) where when you enter a shop you ask "Who's last?", the last person who entered raises their hand and you just need to watch them, then when the next person comes in and asks "Who's last?" you raise your hand, and so on, no number taking or lining up needed.

  5. Ooh, I love that album!

    That's such a brilliant, simple, civilized way to solve the queue issues. When's the referendum? I'm ready to vote!

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