There is hardly a worse feeling in my privileged life than longing for a Chick-fil-A sandwich with waffle fries and a sweet tea only to realize it’s a Sunday, and America’s favorite fast-food restaurant is closed for the day.
So tragic is the all-too-frequent occurrence even Chick-fil-A itself recently forgot about its Sunday closures, which were started in 1946 by founder S. Truett Cathy, who wanted his employees to “set aside one day to rest and worship if they choose.”
It all started after the Atlanta-based eatery tried to get in on National Sandwich Day, an appropriate holiday for the restaurant that boasts “the original chicken sandwich.” So the restaurant’s marketing staff sent out an email blast, encouraging customers to visit their nearest location and place their orders on Nov. 3.
But just as Kanye West reminded us in his newly released song, Chick-fil-A is “Closed on Sunday.” And Nov. 3 … is a Sunday.
“Calling all sandwich lovers,” the problematic email declared. “Some prefer it grilled, others fancy the original. No matter which Chick-fil-A sandwich you love, order yours on November 3 for National Sandwich Day.”
It wasn’t long before the people at Chick-fil-A picked up on their snafu.
The fast-food chain sent out another email soon thereafter, owning up to the mistake: “Well … this is awkward.” We’ll just call it Chick-fil-gAte.
“We recently sent an email that included a message about National Sandwich Day, which naturally we were very excited about,” read the message. “We didn’t realize it falls on Sunday, when we are closed. We apologize for the confusion and hope to see you soon (Monday-Saturday).”
Popeye’s immediately seized on the mistake with a video on Twitter showing a highway sign for the Louisiana-inspired restaurant right next to one for Chick-fil-A, whose road signs often note, “Closed Sunday.” An employee was seen adding to the Popeye’s sign, “Open Sunday.”
Zaxby’s, another fast-food restaurant trying its darnedest to compete with Chick-fil-A, ran a similar campaign during the Super Bowl earlier this year, making fun of the Christian-owned restaurant for being closed on Sundays.
At the time, I thought the commercial was quite ironic. I suppose Zaxby’s (and now apparently Popeye’s) are admitting defeat by acknowledging they can only truly compete with Chick-fil-A when Chick-fil-A is not in the competition … on Sundays.
Here’s to you, Chick-fil-A. I’ll forgive the error, and I’ll see you on Monday. And Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, too.