Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Secrets of Subway

I'm a sandwich artist and proud.  This was my last week working at Subway, but once a sandwich artist, always a sandwich artist.  I'm never gonna lose that skill.
Sandwich Artist?  Pshh Sandwich Hero.

I've wanted to write this post all summer long, but thought it would be a better idea to wait until I'm no longer employed at Subway.  Better safe than sorry.  So no, this post isn't all secrets about Subway, because in actuality, there aren't many.  I'm just going to write about everything that has to do with Subway, being a Subway employee, and other awesome stuff you probably don't care about.  

Subway Subs

One of the most common questions people ask me is if I ever get sick of the food at Subway.  My answer is no.  We don't get free food at our Subway.  Or discounts.  We get free soft drinks though!  And I thought I was cheap...So back to the original question.  No, I'm not sick of Subway, because I hardly ever eat it.  After all, one sub costs almost as much as an hour's wage.  That thought automatically kills my craving for any overpriced sandwich.

Alright, let's get down to the nitty gritty.  The food.  Subway is known for being one of the few fast food restaurants that serves healthy food, but that doesn't mean they don't have unhealthy options too.  There are PLENTY of fattening sandwiches to choose from and that is why we get lots of thin costumers and lots of fat customers.  After all, you are what you eat.

And that is why with only one glance, I can make a fairly accurate guess of what kind of sandwich the customer will get.  Old people usually get the tuna.  Thin women get the 6 inch turkey on wheat.  Kids get ham or turkey with mayo.  If they're feeling wild, they might add olives and pickles.  Construction workers buy the spicy italian, BMT, or steak.  Teenage boys pick the chicken bacon ranch or buffalo.  Teenage girls buy the chicken teriyaki or oven roasted chicken.

I could be wrong of course.  But rarely.

My favorites/The subs I recommend are:
  • Subway Club: Delicious, and pretty low in fat and other bad stuff
  • Chicken Bacon Ranch:  Not healthy, which is why it's so good
  • Steak and Cheese:  Toast the green peppers and onions with the sandwich for complete satisfaction
  • Subway Melt: Who knew turkey, ham, and bacon would be so delicious together.  
  • Italian BMT:  Pepperoni, salami, and ham.  Well, at least it has ham on it too...
  • Meatball Marinara:  Most people don't get anything besides cheese on this sandwich, but it is so good with all the peppers and onions on it too.  Don't skimp out; the veggies are free.  Be warned.  This sub has the most calories out of them all.  580 calories for a 6 inch.
The subs I don't recommend are:
  • Oven Roasted Chicken: I used to get this sandwich until I started working at Subway.  Words cannot describe how disgusting they smell when heated up in the hot well.  
  • Cold Cut Combo:  This also smells disgusting.  It also looks disgusting.  No one who works at Subway eats this sub.  No one.  Also, it's basically bologna.  Not worth five bucks.
  • Tuna:  Do you want to know what our tuna mixture is made of?  Tuna and light mayonnaise.  That's it.
  • Seafood Delight:  Imitation crab covered in light mayo.  Yet again, disgusting.  Why would you put that on bread anyway?

Subway Customers

Subway couldn't be a restaurant without it's customers, and they come in many different forms.

Every so often we get the Subway noobs.  They freaking tick me off because they have no idea what they're supposed to do or what to order.  Either they walk in, stare at the menu for ten minutes , or they look at all the meats and make up their own sub creations. 

Here, I'll recreate these situations.

Costumer: "What's the Subway Club?"
Me:  "It's turkey, roast beef, and ham."
Costumer: "What about Italian BMT?"
Me:  "That has 6 pieces of both pepperoni and salami, and 4 pieces of ham."
Costumer:  "Ok, well I think I'll just get the Ham and Cheese sub."

Costumer:  "What's that stuff?"
Me:  "It's steak."
Costumer:  "Ok, I want that and the turkey."
Me:  *sigh*

But I never get too mad at the noobs, because before I worked there, I didn't know anything about how Subway worked either.  I never even realized they had a menu board...

Then there are the regulars.  They eat Subway every. single. day.  And they get the same thing every. single. day.  I'm always proud when I can make their whole sub without even asking what they want.  Either I work too much, or they eat too much Subway.  Probably both.

We also have customers that ALL the employees know about.  We called one such customer Olive Boy, because he always asked for extra olives.  Actually, he asked for almost all our olives.  At one point our manager had to write a note for all the employees saying, "Learn to say no to Olive Boy!!  We can't afford to give him that many olives."  One of the customers was well known for getting every kind of sauce on his sub.  Ok, maybe not ALL of the sauces, around 10 different kinds.  Sick.  Another kid was known as the Wedgie Sandwich Boy because he had some foreign accent and couldn't say veggie.  Poor kid.

What it's like to be a Subway employee

Working at Subway really isn't as bad as I make it seem.  (I have a problem with complaining).  All of us have the same job, and that job is to do everything.  We have to make the sandwiches (duh), work the cash register, bake the bread, prep the food, do the dishes, clean everything, and try not to strangle customers...I mean communicate with customers.  All that food you choose from on the line?  Yeah, we have to prep it, including cutting the onions, green peppers, and tomatoes.  Subway really is eating fresh.  Well, most of it.  The bread comes as frozen dough after all...

I usually don't show up to work dreading the time I will be spending there, because if I get sick of one thing, I can usually move on to another.  There's almost always something to be done.  "If you have time to lean, you have time to clean."  If you can't tell, I've been brainwashed.

So why does working make me angry after a few hours?  Oh, just lots of little things.  Like how no one will do dishes, so I end up doing them twice in one shift.  How I'm trying to finish the last of the bread, but customers keep trickling in.  Cleaning up spills by the fountain area for the third time in one hour.  You know, stuff like that.  But that could happen at any fast food job.  I want to tell you about the things that customers do that bug the living crap out of Subway employees.  Or at least me.

1) Ordering 5+ sandwiches when there is a line of customers behind you.
2) Ordering the steak, or chicken on flat bread without it being toasted.  Then we have to toast the flat bread, and heat up the meat in the microwave instead of just toasting it all together.
3) Vegetarians telling me to change my gloves if I touched meat before starting their sandwich.
4) Forgetting to mention that you have 3 other subs when they are nearly to the register.
5) Asking for "a little more" meat or cheese without being charged.
6) Acting like it's all my fault for running out of a certain item.
7) Having their kids order their sandwiches. 
8) Ordering five subs at 9:50pm or later.  I know it says we're open till 10, but give us a break!
9) Middle Schoolers.

But I have to be fair about this.  The customers aren't the only annoying people, so are the employees making your sandwich.  I can hardly stand going to other Subways now that I know how things are supposed to be made.  Everything they do is sloppy and wrong, and it drives me crazy.  I used to get Subway at BYU a lot last year because it was on my meal plan, but I always left feeling angry.  Apparantly our Subway at BYU is the busiest in the country, so they have four different lines with four different cash registers during lunch.  That's pretty crazy.  Even though they are dealing with huge amounts of customers, I don't want my meat and cheese being thrown on with no order and then getting skimped on the veggies. 

I don't want to be a hypocrite, so I apply the Golden Rule to my sandwich making.  "Make other customers' subs how you would make your own."  I try to fold the cold cut meat the same repeatedly, so it looks nice and tidy, and I always spread out the steak or chicken after dumping it on the bread.  I always hated it when there was an inch of just bread on the ends.  The thing that annoyed me the most was the cheese placement.  You know what I'm talking about.

I always make sure I place the cheese like puzzle pieces.  I may have a slight OCD problem when it comes to this job.  

And that's everything you don't need to know about Subway.  If you're still reading this, congratulations.  This post was more like a novel.  Sorry.


  1. Helps me out a lot, due to the fact I will be working there soon.

  2. I loved your blog on Subway! I have never laughed so hard, plus learned so much about a business, all in one blog. You are an excellent writer. I have an interview coming up with them, and your blog was a huge help. Thank you.

  3. I just read this and holy shit I can relate hahaha!! I hate being the employee of the night that does everything :( and has to tell the other two what to do!! I've worked at a subway in a mall for 1.5 years now and it's one of the busiest in my city. Not a bad job at all, but you can't be stupid.

  4. Subway is the best and there is this site where you can get a Free Subway Gift Card