Working in the food industry is no walk in the park, but these workplaces are another thing entirely. These poor workers put up with poor working conditions, dastardly bosses, and incompetent coworkers as long as they could before they finally said those two, sweet words: "I. Quit."
(Content has been edited for clarity.)
“If You’re Too Dumb To Know, I Don’t Need You Here”
“I was working my first job ever at a McDonald’s inside a Walmart. It was a busy Saturday with a line out the door and the manager yelled at me to stop taking orders because she couldn’t keep up. I was 15 at the time and therefore not old enough to work the grill, so I asked what I should do. She told me that if I was too dumb to know, she didn’t need me there. So I was like, ‘Yeah, I guess you’ve got this covered then,’ clocked out, tossed my hat on the ground and strolled out the front door as she pleaded for me to come back…I wish 31-year-old me had the gumption that 15-year-old me had.”
His Manager Refused To Get Him Help, So He Went A Little Crazy
“I was working at a restaurant in the kitchen on a holiday. I was working a two-man sauté station by myself, along with working the grill. Schools were out this afternoon and I told the manager that we may need to go ahead and call someone in as we were getting busy. He just kept saying, ‘No it’s fine, I’ll come help if it gets too busy.’
Sure enough, we got slammed. After repeatedly asking this guy for help, and him not helping me because he was too busy with customers (go figure), I had a 15 top, 12 top, and a 10 top all order in at the same time. So I had 37 orders on top of my existing orders. I lost it. I stabbed my tongs through the computer monitor and walked out.
I went back and apologized to the GM, who agreed that it could have been handled better by both parties. He didn’t make me pay for the monitor, though I offered. He was a good guy. Not that manager, though.”
He Basically Assaulted Her In Front Of Customers
“I worked at Subway. It was the first day ever of the $5 footlong deal and there was a HUGE line out the door. Now, all of our veggies were cut that morning at the same time. The bin of onions was getting low, so I ran to the back and got another bin. Because I was wanting to focus on getting people their food, I dumped the new bin into the other one instead of switching them. The manager pulled the bin out and threw it at me in front of everyone. I threw my hat down and walked out, leaving him with a line of 200 customers. He had a history of abusing women, and I was no longer having it.”
All He Did Was Hang Up His Coat, Then She Started In On Him
“I worked at McDonald’s for about two weeks during an incredibly cold winter. One day, I clocked in on the way to the coat closet. I hung up my coat and walked right to the register.
My manager came to me, ‘You need to hang up your coat and then clock in. We don’t pay you to hang up your coat.’
I immediately clocked out, walked to the coat closet with her following me, scolding me, grabbed my coat and walked out.”
Not Only Was He Extremely Rude, He Also Took Money From His Workers
“I had a manager that was a real piece of crap. He was extremely rude and didn’t care about the customers, only profit. I was hired to host but ended up doing everything other than run the bar and kitchen. I’m talking waiting, bussing, running food, deliveries, cleaning, you name it. The manager was also Scrooge McDuck type. We had to literally ask for our paychecks for about four to five days before he would give them up. Every week. There was a small dining room at the entrance, but all the actual servers were in the dining room upstairs. If people sat downstairs, they were my tables to take care of so the waitstaff didn’t have to run up and down stairs every five minutes.
One day, I had three tables and an order for delivery came in. I was the only person able to do deliveries, so I went to ask my manager to take either my tables or the delivery (which he’d asked me to do). He yelled at me for bothering him, so I grabbed one of the waitstaff instead to cover my tables. I took the delivery and got back to the store, with the money from the sale in hand. The manager RIPPED the money out of my hand, yelled at me for leaving without telling him, then proceeded to pocket MY tip money. I lost it. I told him I was sick of working with a sociopathic thief and walked out the front door. I coordinated my paperwork with the night manager, found a new job the same day, and was an assistant manager there within two months.”
“If You Don’t Like It, There’s The Door”
“I worked in the deli in a fairly big grocery store chain. After working for four years, my manager decided to schedule me for 21 shifts in a row, 10 hours each shift. I told her that’s not exactly legal. She told me that it is if I get five days off in a row. I was having none of it, so she told me if I didn’t like it, there’s the door. I stewed on the info long after she left the store for the day. About three hours before my shift was done, I just said eff it and wrote a note that said, ‘I TOOK THE DOOR. I QUIT,’ and just left. Since I was the closer that night, nothing got shut down.”
He Was a Jerk From The Moment He Walked In
“I worked at a small grocery store in upstate New York. Our town was becoming a weekend tourist destination for New York City folk. I’d only had this job for a week. The weekend rush of city folk came in and I thought I was doing well, a little slow, but good enough. I was ringing this jerk up. I could tell he was a jerk right away because the first thing he said to me was, ‘You didn’t even ask if I brought my own bags!’
I said, ‘Oh sorry, I’m a bit new here!’
He replied, ‘It’s not rocket science, it’s bagging.’ I looked down at the register so he couldn’t see me getting mad, then I plastered a smile on my face and finished scanning. Before I could even grab his bags, he started bagging his own stuff. Apparently, I wasn’t moving fast enough. This was before I had even scanned the last item.
I apologized to him again and tried to ease the tension by making a joke about myself, ‘Wow, I’m a little slow, aren’t I?’ He agreed in the most serious way. So I realized this guy was a prick, so I just gave him his change and receipt. Then I smiled and said, ‘Have a nice day,’ then started with my next customer, who I knew from our town.
The jerk was not pleased, so he interrupted me and said, ‘You’re not going to smile and say have a nice day?’ So I smiled (again) and said have a nice day (again) in the most non-sarcastic way I could because I just wanted this prick to be gone. He laughed a little, but it was clear he was still mad, then he said, ‘Wow. So that’s who you really are. Why don’t you just show us who you really are?’ I was confused, I had no idea what he was talking about. Then he THREW the 86 cents in change at me, hard, and said, ‘Eff you,’ and walked out. I wanted to strangle that guy. You just know he just thinks he’s better than everyone. For months, I had dreams of meeting this guy and throwing his change back in his face. I quit that day. I have never worked in customer service since then and never will.”
She Went Above And Beyond For Them, For What?
“I had a party of 13 show up literally five minutes to close on a Sunday. We were out of quite a few items. I did my best to accommodate them, though. I know I gave them the best service I could under the circumstances. These people made a huge mess and ended up staying for about 45 minutes after they were done eating. When they finally left, I started cleaning up the table and I noticed a 20 dollar bill and 57 cents. I went to collect the tip and realized the folded 20 dollar bill was one of those fake, ‘Have you been saved?’ church things. I just walked out.”
Her One, Tiny Slip Up Sent That Customer Into A “Full-Scale Witch Fit”
“I worked in the complaints department for a major takeaway pizza company. I was on the phone with a woman who was literally yelling down the phone because her pizza was 45 minutes late. It was a Saturday night and it was snowing. Obviously, you’d expect delays. I was empathetic, I said I’d send her coupons for her next order and I was about to process a full refund, but she just kept shouting. Talking over me. Swearing. I reached the end of my tether and said, ‘Oh my god,’ while she was talking.
That ‘Oh my god’ launched her into a full-scale witch fit. Suddenly I, as an individual, was the reason that she’s hangry. She demanded to know my full name, which I refused to give her. She said she was going online to leave the worst review ever written, not about the company, about me. She proceeded to yell-lecture me about how I’m in the wrong job.
I told her to eff off and hung up on her. I never processed the refund and I never went back to that nightmare of a job.”
He Didn’t Understand Why His Friend Thought He Could Boss Everyone Around
“My friend and I were both supervisors at a fast food joint. I was a kitchen supervisor, he was front supervisor. He’d let his stoner friends in after closing and chat away while mopping the floor and we would have to wait for him EVERY SINGLE NIGHT to finish his duties.
His shiny supervisor name tag gave him some sort of power trip and he would come into the kitchen and start ordering around MY staff after I’d already given them a list of jobs. These people were 15/16-year-old kids who were confused about who to listen to. I’d brought this issue up with him many times and with my manager. The manager would talk to him and he’d be fine for awhile. Then our manager quit and everything changed.
After weeks of this bull and us arguing, I had a closing shift with him. I’d asked my staff member to do some dishes and refill stock as it was an hour to close. My friend came in and ordered him to mop the kitchen floor before the end of the night so, ‘We can get out of here at a decent time. You guys never have your crap together.’ I came out from the freezer and saw the kid mopping the floor. Why? We had an hour to go still and had to drain the chicken fryers, which always makes a mess. ‘The other shiny badge said to!’
So I went up front and this idiot was sitting with his buddies, eating apple pies instead of doing his own closing duties. I’d had enough. I’d been at this place for four years and for the last year, this guy had been a pain in my butt. I went into the back office and wrote the acting manager a letter as to why I did what I was about to do and apologizing in advance for any craziness that followed, but I was tired of this guy’s superiority complex.
I went back to the kitchen, told the kid I was working with to continue mopping the floor and then go home. I then walked over to the burger station and proceeded to put mayo on all the individual ingredients of a burger, the bun, patty, lettuce, pickles, cheese and bacon. Then I threw them up at the ceiling, effectively sticking them there. Then I just sat there talking and refused to work. My friend came into the back and proceeded to start yelling at me and at that very moment, a slice of cheese lost its grip on the ceiling and splattered into the mop bucket. He slowly looked up and yelled, ‘WHAT THE HECK! WHO DID THIS?! WHO?!’ with his voice all high and squeaky.
I looked him straight in the eye and told him if he had been supervising instead of visiting with his friends, he’d know that I’d quit and didn’t give a crap how he planned on cleaning it up before the end of the night. I walked out and never went back.”
He Should Have Taken His Trainer’s Warning To Begin With
“During my first week there and the guy who trained me said, ‘I would leave as soon as you get the chance.’ Then I noticed all the mold forming on the racks in the cooler where the tubs of sauce, soup, and etc sat without lids on them. The cleaning at the end of the day was ridiculously lazy, I felt like these people didn’t care about anything being clean or food being sanitary at all. I thought, ‘Hey, maybe they do a nice cleaning once a week and really get everything done.’ No, that was not the case. The owner paid me very well and gave me the hours I needed, but I just couldn’t work under the conditions. I should have just talked to the owner about it, but what’s done is done.”
When One Job Refused To Appreciate Her, She Simply Moved On
“I was working at both Starbucks and Chipotle at the time (they were connected in this town). My General Manager from Starbucks came back from vacation. For some reason, she decided to start yelling at me as soon as I walked in the door. She did this on the floor, in front of both the customers and crew, literally shouting about how I shouldn’t work two jobs and I was being dumb and I was just stressing myself out, blah blah blah. I don’t remember all of it but she went on for a while. I was in tears and completely embarrassed. I knew I was one of their best employees and didn’t deserve that kind of treatment. I felt it was completely unprofessional.
So, instead of clocking in, I walked over to Chipotle and asked if I could have full-time hours (after explaining a bit). They gladly said yes, because I am a hard worker.
I did not go back to Starbucks to tell them, which made getting coffee kinda tense a few months later.
The best part was, five days later, I got a call from the second in command manager begging me to come in and close Starbucks. I was like, ‘Uh, I haven’t shown up for a shift in five days, I thought you guys got the hint.’
She said, ‘No, we got all your shifts covered, it’s ok. Please come and close, please!?’
I did not close.”
Her Drama Queen Boss Made Her Work Life A Nightmare
“I worked in a Starbucks. My boss had a knack for starting drama. If you went to her about a serious issue, instead of resolving it, she would just call in the other person privately and say, ‘Guess what this person said about you.’ I’ve personally witnessed it on two separate occasions between four different coworkers. She would pick the side of who she liked more, then she’d make the other person’s life a living nightmare by always criticizing and accusing them of stuff. It didn’t even matter what the original problem was. She would just pick whoever she liked more at the time.
She also had a habit of overworking us. It was a really busy Starbucks and she only ever had maybe four people working at a time. The day I quit, she expected me to keep up with our extremely busy line (maybe two drinks a minute busy). Meanwhile, our drip coffee machine was broken and we had no hot water, so we had to manually boil everything. It was a train wreck of a day already. She decided that was the perfect time to take her break and when she came back, it was still as busy as when she left, so she was upset at me that the store was a mess when it wasn’t even my job to clean up in the first place.”
All He Wanted Was To Spend Valentine’s Day With His Girlfriend
“I worked at a pizza place as a driver. On Valentine’s Day, I asked to leave at my scheduled end time because I had to pick my girlfriend up from work and go to dinner. The closing driver came in, my boss told me the run I was making was my last, awesome.
I got back from the deliveries to a somewhat busy kitchen but nothing out of control and was told I had to work late. I went up to my manager and said, ‘Do I need to give you a written two weeks notice or will this encounter suffice?’ It was awesome.”
Lucy Only Worked There To Have A Good Time
“I was a dishwasher at a restaurant inside a grocery store. It was a pretty nice diner overall. I worked second shift and the primary first shift worker was Lucy. She was somewhere around 80 years old. The customers loved her because she’d chat with them through their meals and not do any real work.
I’d come into eight hours of bull heaped up across tables, sometimes the floor. I put in several complaints with our HR and personnel manager. I was told she couldn’t be removed due to the risk of age discrimination charges. I said okay, whelp, there are a good eight hours of crap to do and dinner rush is coming, so hopefully, you find a replacement soon!
I applied at a convenience store on the way home, got an instant interview (in my work uniform, no less) and was hired on the spot. This is why the age discrimination laws are hated by me. If someone can’t reasonably perform their duties, I shouldn’t have to fix their problem.”
Her Manager Made Her Cry In Front Of Everyone
“I worked at Burger King one summer. I was never formally taught, I was just thrown on the cash register on my first day with no one teaching me how to use it. I asked the manager for help. ‘You can’t be this stupid.’ I swallowed my pride and went to HR. Things changed for a bit. A few weeks later, the lunch rush is here. I was the only one on the register with a line reaching to the door. We were the busiest BK in USA on a military base. I asked the manager for help while I was making milkshakes and getting trays together while also taking orders. She just stood there, leaning against the wall. Then she told me, ‘You can do it. I’m busy.’ I said forget this noise. I. Quit. I went home crying because I was embarrassed and scared my mom was gonna be mad at me. Mom gave me a hug and said go take a nap and let me have my favorite meal for dinner.”
There Was Nothing He Could Do To Please That Man, So He Just Stopped Trying
“I worked at a health foods store and the manager and I had been at odds for a while. See, this store has an obsession with facing; everything has to look perfect at all times. This would not be a problem if we were staffed accordingly.
Our store was not. Everybody was running around doing their work and making sure the store looked perfect, but he would only staff a skeleton crew. He had literally pulled me into his office one day to tell me that my poor performance was getting me a reduction in hours until I could shape up.
Any protests fell on deaf ears. He didn’t care that I was worked to the bone, he couldn’t care less about all the customers’ demands. He expected me to be able to stock grocery and face it at least two to three times every eight hours. I knew I was worth nothing to him, so I kept fantasizing about quitting and having an ‘I quit’ scene a la Office Space where’d I give him the finger and leave.
But one day fate poked me in the back and whispered into my ears a little temptation that I soon found to be to my liking.
The manager came up to me and advised me that my work partner would not be showing up and the dairy stocker had not shown up, so now I would need to do grocery, dairy, and frozen foods. We were now down three people. This was my time to perform big.
Initially, I thought this would be my chance to get a 40 hour work week. So I began my shift with a diligent, determined vigor that wore off quickly.
About four hours in, I realized I was horribly behind. The evening rush requests had set me back greatly and there was no way I could please the manager. I stood at my U-boat full of boxes with a forlorn look. There was no winning this game.
‘Then why play?’ I asked myself. ‘You go back to school in a month anyway, and with that, your work-study job comes back.’
Yes, I thought, my cushy computer lab job. Air conditioning, peace, quiet, and studying at work. Paradise.
So I took off my apron and left it on the manager’s desk. He was in the back doing an inventory check. I folded it neatly and clocked out. I had no desire to explain my decision, needed no toothless threats form him, no vain attempts to stop me. Not one employee even said anything to me. I was done. I got into my car and drove home.
He called 14 times and left six voicemails. I had unconsciously messed him up on a busy night. He had taken too many support beams out of the scaffolding and the whole thing had fallen on him, if only for just one night.
I never responded and went drinking with friends that night.”