Lunch at Burger King
by Robert Shackles

July 26, 2001

LUNCH AT BURGER KING. [This is a true story]

My wife Norma and I were in Columbia Mo. one beautiful fall day about
four years ago.  When we passed Burger Kings we noticed they were
advertising a super special [ Two grilled hamburgers for a buck]   Not
one to pass up a bargain we turned around and pulled into the Burger
King parking lot.  As we had finished our meal and was returning to our
car we noticed a fellow digging cans out of their big trash bin.  I went
up to him and asked him what he was doing and he said "just trying to
make a little money."  I noticed his clothes were tattered and torn but
not having lived a sheltered life during my early years I also noticed
something else about him.  He had a smell that was very familiar to me.
It was what I call the P& G soap smell and if you have ever taken a bath
using P& G soap or been around anyone who has you know what I mean.  I
asked the man if he had anything to eat today and he said no.  I asked
him if he liked hamburgers and he said "I sure do."  It was then I asked
him to follow me into Burger King and I would buy him a hamburger.  He
dropped his sack of cans and looked at me in disbelief and a tear
started rolling down his cheeks.  He followed me into Burger King and he
said thank you at least four or five times.  As we were standing in line
I noticed two of the young clerks kept looking at him. When I was asked
for my order I said "fix my friend here eight hamburgers, a large fry, a
water, and throw in a couple of those hot pies. The young clerk
said "that will be to go won't it?"  I replied "I don't know I'll ask
him."  He elected to eat his meal in Burger King and I requested a take
out sack for him to take his leftover food with him. As I handed him his
food I simply said "God Loves You Friend."  Every one was looking at
me in a very strange way. To this day I don't know what those people
were thinking.  When we drove out of the parking lot we noticed the
fellow was sitting in the back booth by the window with no one around
him and he was gulping down the Burger King specials.  Here's  a man
God Loves who appeared to be "mentally deficient" but who demonstrated
to us he would work the dirtiest job for a little money.
Norma and I felt good!