I’m taking a quick break from the menu rundown to celebrate this very special day as a Chick-fil-A supporter, blogger, and VIPer: Cow Appreciation Day. I mean, even the most hardened criminal must have a soft spot in his heart for this day. Just take a look at some of the folks I saw during my 3:30 visit to Chick-fil-A today:
I told them to smile right before I snapped the pic; then I realized that was a dumb request. I can only hope there are smiles under those cow nostrils.
How about these youngsters enjoying Cow Appreciation day with what can I can only presume is free ice cream:
Yes, the line was out the door today as people young and old were lining up for their free Chick-fil-A for dressing like a cow.
As I mentioned earlier, you would think that Cow Appreciation Day is something that everyone could get behind. And yet, it’s not. Take a look at some of the comments from the Facebook question we posed on our blog, Addicted to Saving, earlier today:
Let it be known for the record, I am glad these people have the freedom to make these comments, and I would die for their 1st amendment right to do so. We didn’t block them from our Facebook page, and there were plenty of comments expressing love for Chick-fil-A and for this awesome Cow Appreciation Day event.
Part of me doesn’t even want to give them any press, but I think it’s important to expose, kindly, the hypocrisy tucked away in the message of the Chick-fil-A haters, which is this: you cannot condemn another while expressing the same (supposed) qualities of those who you condemn. I can’t tell a smoker to quit smoking if I myself smoke. (Of course I can do that, but I lose credibility when I do it.)
You can disagree with another without being disagreeable, and unfortunately it’s a trait that has seemingly been lost in our culture. There was a particular person I befriended on Facebook a while back whose worldview was completely opposite of mine. I invited him to lunch and for five hours, we talked about all the hot button topics you could imagine, and came to differing conclusions are darn near all of them. But we left as friends, and he respected me for a calm presentation of my point of view.
Two weeks went by and he found out I hold a certain view on an issue, and proceeded to blow up at me with f-bombs and other creative uses of the English language. He then defriended me. At the end of the day, his friendship with me was predicated on believing as he did on a particular issue. If this belief was not identical, the friendship was over. Tolerance, for him, meant I had to agree with him, and if I did not, then he would not tolerate me at all.
This kind of emotional irrationalism permeates our society today when it comes to felt needs. Ultimately the trick is to frame an argument with sensational words like bigot, hateful, and homophobic, and make them apply to all who oppose you, regardless of whether or not it’s true. It’s brilliant, because nobody wants to be any of those things, all of which carry definitions associated with intolerance and fear. This typically is done to force someone else into a point of view versus having to reasonably defend it yourself. When we are emotionally attached to issues, it’s admittedly difficult to take a step back and look at the merits of the feelings versus just going with our ‘gut.’ Sometimes the gut is wrong, like when I had an African parasite inside it. We need to be able to dialogue and talk about the issues nearest our hearts with critical thoughts and minds, and if we end up disagreeing, then let’s do it without being disagreeable. It can be done.
All that to say, I’m really thankful for a company like Chick-fil-A, which does so much to promote qualities we all want to have. For instance, our server Ashley today:
She took a genuine interest in me and my wife as we ordered today, asking us questions about our jobs, the blog, and what we were doing in Sarasota (heading to Liza’s brother’s for the weekend.) Chick-fil-A employees are constantly telling you, “My Pleasure,” which, fake or not, goes a long way towards promoting good vibes during your eating experience. They have events like Cow Appreciation Day and Daddy-Daughter Date Night. They even fill up your refills and take away your trash – at a fast food company! This is why we love Chick-fil-A.
This particular Chick-fil-A even had mouthwash and toothpicks in the bathroom!
I mean, toothpicks? Now that’s going the extra mile.
So stay strong Chick-fil-A. You’re going to take some flack. But good leaders are usually lonely ones, because it takes courage to stand strong on conviction and fly in the face of conventional thought and wisdom. So thank you Chick-fil-A. Thank you for more than just my VIP card.
Speaking of which, I did eat one of my faves today, the 4-pc Chicken Strips meal…bon appetit!