Monday, September 26, 2011

It's no rubber vomit

If you’re over 25 or haven’t worked a drive-thru window, you’ve probably not been splattered yet by the latest craze in restaurant prank-dom. But fear not, you legions who still chuckle at the thought of a Whoopee Cushion. This is no squirting lapel flower.

Indeed, coning may be the dumbest thing since the Macarena. Here’s how it works, as you can see for yourself via countless YouTube postings.

A customer pulls up to the drive-thru window of a fast-food place to get his or her soft-serve ice cream cone. But instead of taking the treat by the cone as it’s handed through the window, the perpetrator grabs it by the top so the ice cream squishes through the jokester’s fingers.

As far as I can tell, the hilarity is not seeing the ice cream fly in all directions, but in witnessing the restaurant employee’s face as the patron proves to be an ass. Ideally, the person in the passenger seat will capture the scene on a phone and post the video on a sharing site.

For added hilarity, keep holding the treat by the ice cream, turn your hand so the cone is on top, and start eating it that way, as if the situation is perfectly normal.

Video-taped perpetrators have included Justin Bieber, who should have his bowl-sculpted hair smacked, as well as several other young celebrities. Their clips have been viewed by millions of YouTube fans.

At least the prank isn’t as dangerous as the fire-in-the-hole gag that reigned a few years ago. With that fit of dumbness, a drive-thru customer would take a drink or a gooey item from the employee, yell “Fire in the hole!,” and fling it back at the staffer.

There, too, the objective was to have someone else in the car capture the scene on video and post it to YouTube or the like. But the fad came to a particularly ugly end when a prankster ran through the gag at a Boston Market, flinging a platter of hot mac and cheese at the drive-thru attendant. He suffered second-degree burns, and the jokester was arrested.

You can only hope that coning loses its appeal very quickly. Stupidity that profound is an embarrassment to us all.

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