One year ago today, the Cheesecake Factory celebrated its 40th anniversary offered free slices of cheesecake to anyone who ordered via DoorDash. In many parts of the country, this generous act resulted in cheesecake. In Arlington, it resulted in chaos.
“Police were called to the area of the Cheesecake Factory at 2900 Clarendon Blvd earlier today for a report of a large crowd and heavy traffic in the area,” ARLNow reported, breaking the news of dessert-related mayhem in Clarendon. A man was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, and Twitter exploded with accounts and comments on the societal breakdown that few foresaw:
@DoorDash @ARLnowDOTcom @Cheesecake @washingtonpost @dcexaminer over 2hrs wait for delivery drivers,cars got ticketed,ppl got arrested n profanities thrown at the poor employees. Not worth getting injured over $6,jerks. pic.twitter.com/QovOL76QjX
— p p (@pat_patsy_cake) December 5, 2018
I always thought the Clarendon version of a riot was some drunk bros brawling at 3 am….but delivery drivers storming the Cheesecake factory for free Cheesecake like it's the Bastille does come close https://t.co/00ibPdnrHq
— jetlag survival stan account (@Convolutedname) December 5, 2018
Not to really defend Clarendon but it's pretty low on the "DC area suburbs most likely to have a Cheesecake Factory-related incident" list
— Barred in DC (@barredindc) December 5, 2018
Or, as one ARLNow commenter put it: “The veneer of civilization is thin indeed.”
Where does the blame fall? Should we have listened to people with cheesecake-related experience?
I worked at the Cheesecake Factory for three years out of the college and I've also covered riots in Ferguson, Baltimore and D.C. as a reporter and the craziest day of my life was when the Cheesecake Factory I worked at ran a 50 cent slice promotion. https://t.co/oy9nwfBO80
— Byron Tau (@ByronTau) December 5, 2018
We can’t undo the past; we have no choice but to move forward. Today, the Cheescake Factory’s website carries no banner commemorating the events of 12/5/18, but it does offer another deal via DoorDash: No delivery fees. This time around, though, the promotion expires in a few days. There’s no rush, people. Be safe out there.
We'll never forget where we were during the great Clarendon Cheesecake Factory riots https://t.co/SKatr627az
— Michele Banks (@artologica) December 5, 2018