More than ‘works’ on this burger - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

More than ‘works’ on this burger

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Posted: Thursday, November 9, 2006 5:51 am | Updated: 2:36 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

Co-workers Sandy Perrin and Vancene Garcia decided to have lunch together Monday, so Perrin went through the Wendy’s restaurant drivethrough at 2125 E. Baseline Road in Gilbert.

According to the women, as they were eating, Perrin noticed something sticking out of her burger. At first, they thought the object was the tip of a condom. Upon further inspection, they identified it as the finger of a latex glove, which — while it greatly reduces the amount of intensive therapy the women will need — still doesn’t make them feel all warm and fuzzy about Wendy’s.

Garcia called the restaurant and spoke to the manager and told her about their discovery. “She said, ‘Oh, I’m sorry.’” Garcia said. “Then she didn’t say anything else, so I said, ‘You’re sorry and?’ Then she said if we brought the receipt back she would give us a refund.”

Underwhelmed, Perrin reported the incident to the Arizona Department of Environmental Health, which passed it along to the Maricopa County Environmental Services, which is investigating.

I called the restaurant manager, who said she wasn’t authorized to comment on the incident and referred me to the corporate office in Phoenix. A little while later, I got a call from Wendy’s spokesperson Candis Gains, who said, basically, that they had spoken to the store’s employees and couldn’t verify Perrin’s story.

“This is an unsubstantiated claim,” Gains said. “I would urge you not to jump to any conclusions.”

Fair enough. You will recall that Wendy’s took a public relations beating about a yearand-half ago when a woman in San Jose, Calif., claimed to have found a human finger in a bowl of chili. That incident turned out to be a hoax and the woman was charged with fraud.

Gains said they had not seen the evidence, i.e., the part of the glove that Perrin says she found in the burger. Interestingly, Garcia said she had talked at length with folks from Wendy’s corporate offices and no one has asked to see the evidence. So on one hand, Wendy’s says it hasn’t seen the evidence. On the other, the company hasn’t even asked to see the evidence. You may jump to your own conclusions.

Maybe it’s just the world we live in these days. Folks used to be able to trust each other.

Gains said that Wendy’s “values its customers.” Apparently, they also trust their customers about as far as they can throw ’em.

Maybe the moral of the story is that if you want to have absolute confidence in the food you eat, the best place to go is your own kitchen. Environmental services has had 1,679 complaints about improper handling of food since Jan. 1. Spokesman Johnny Dilone says folks should call (602) 506-6616 if they suspect something afoul in their food.

In the interim, you might want to think twice before ordering that single cheese “with everything.”

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