Posts Tagged ‘open letters’

Dear Brinkers International

May 12, 2007

My boyfriend and I are regular visitors to your Rancho Cucamonga On the Border location and nearly every single visit ends in disaster. Not only has the quality of the service dropped significantly in recent months, but so has the presentation and quality of our meals. This most recent visit ranks up among the worst, as both our in-house and To-Go orders ended up completely wrong.


More often than not our simple (but specific) orders come back wrong, and very often there is something noticably wrong with the food itself. They give us the wrong kind of beef in our tacos, include ingredients we specifically didn’t ask for, or forget about portions of our orders altogether. These are not isolated incidents, and these same problems appear regardless of when we visit, or who is serving us. I had always assumed this is a fundamental problem with the restaurant’s management, and that assumption was proven correct on our msot recent visit.

It was 9:00 on a Thursday night and the restaurant itself was not busy. We had ordered a few tacos a la carte, our standard order, and after an especially long wait the food arrived. Not only were my chicken tacos cold, but there were large pieces of cabbage and carrots in my taco. Who puts carrots and cabbage in a taco? It was as if the restaurant had opened one of those pre-made salad packs at the grocery store and used it as the lettuce in our tacos.

I immediately complained, and our server was kind enough to bring up the manager. He apologized for the ‘lettuce,’ and claimed that they had just been hit by a ‘rush’ and ran out of lettuce. He claimed that the restaurant uses pre-made salad mixes, and that he had been using it all night long as lettuce in orders. I have worked in several restaurants through the years and never have I seen a restaurant use pre-made salad mixes. The manager tried to assure me that they made the salad mixes fresh on the restaurant, but if they had the fresh lettuce on site why couldn’t they just put fresh lettuce in the tacos instead of this mix?

Other Brinkers restaurants pride themselves on fresh ingredients: if they didn’t have fresh lettuce to put in the tacos they simply should have said something when I ordered. Our server was very sympathetic and found the manager’s excuse unacceptable. She even confided in us to us that his excuse for pre-made salad mixes was a blatant lie. While the manager made no attempt to relieve our concerns, she went the extra mile to bring us a complimentary dessert. However, it was the attitude of the manager that soured our experience at the restaurant for the last time.

My boyfriend, despite his concerns over the quality of the food, ordered four soft ground beef tacos to-go for lunch the next day. We didn’t bother to check the tacos when we received them, and quickly paid our bill and left the restaurant soon afterwards. The next I received a call from my boyfriend during his lunch hour: not only did his tacos have shredded beef, but they were hard shell and contained no lettuce, just cabbage and carrots. We’re unsure of whether or not this was a deliberate move on the part of the manager to get back at us, or just another mistake by an incompetent kitchen staff. This kind of service is unacceptable, and we will eating at any of your Brinker’s restaurants again.

– Josh Trujillo

Dear Universal Studios,

February 6, 2007


My name is Josh, and I am a lifelong fan of your movie studios, feature films, and theme parks. I would like to thank you for the quality entertainment you have given to me and my family by offering you my services in your time of need.

You see, I, like many others who bother to think about these things, feel that your studio has always had a very weak staple of cartoon stars, and the irony of that is never lost on me. You see, Walt Disney once worked for Universal. In fact, if Walt’s original creation, ‘Oswald the Lucky Rabbit,’ wasn’t stolen by you he probably never would have left to create Mickey Mouse.

Every time I walk into one of your theme parks I sigh when I see an enormous Curious George or Crash Bandicoot greeting the guests. While Spider-Man and Beetlejuice are quite cool, there is one Universal character in particular I’m always looking for and can never seem to find: Chilly Willy.

Chilly willy

In case you are unfamiliar, Chilly Willy is a small, adorable, semi-mute penguin who wears a ski cap and a scarf. Never quite as popular as that other Universal Studios bird, Chilly has starred in nearly 100 theatrical shorts throughout his career. The truth is that most of these cartoons were awful, but despite this the character has managed to develop a cult following of his own. The lack of presence at Universal theme parks is especially noteworthy when you consider that Woody Woodpecker and the gang are supposedly its’ official mascots. Worse yet, they haven’t made a notable public appearance in about 40 years.

Knowing these things, you’ll understand my shock when I found a women’s t-shirt of the character at Hot Topic, nestled between two especially large piles of Family Guy crap. While it’s not a big deal to see Mickey Mouse or Bugs Bunny on some merchandise, seeing the Universal cartoon stars on anything warrants a marching band and a ticker-tape parade. Kudos to you, good sirs! (And I do assume you are ‘sirs,’ because I doubt a woman would design a shirt featuring the words ‘Chilly’ and ‘Willy’ so prominently, but I digress…)

With the public’s renewed interest in penguins, perhaps the marketing genuises at the studio can try and capitalize on this somehow. Releasing some Chilly Willy cartoons on DVD would be a nice start, but I have something much more amibtious in mind.


If Universal Studios would be willing to loan me the rights to the character for one year, and also, use of a real penguin, I guarantee I could rework the property into something modern and relevant. My proposal includes projects such as taking ‘Chilly Willy’ to summits on global warming, and also, teaching him to do adorable tricks in exchange for pieces of fish!

By covering both ends of the spectrum I can remain respectful of the property while also pushing it head first into the new millennium, While I have no interest in revitalizing Andy Panda or Woody Woodpecker anytime soon, I feel saving Chilly Willy from obscurity is the least I can do for the studio that brought me ‘The Wizard,’ ‘Bride of Frankenstein,’ and terrible ‘King Kong’ remake after terrible ‘King Kong’ remake. It is my hope that you take my offer seriously, and I look forward to receiving your reply!

Thank you again,

– Josh!