The mood in the locker room was subdued after the loss. Even though his teammates had been telling him that he had played a good game, Luka Doncic wasn’t convinced that the loss wasn’t somehow his fault. Trying to think of something that would lift his spirits, Luka’s mind landed on his trip to Taco Bell two days prior. It had been his first time at the American fast food chain, and it had been delicious. If he went again, maybe he would feel better…
“Hey Dwight,” he said to his teammate Dwight Powell. “Do you want to go to Taco Bell again?”
Dwight’s dour expression cracked into a grin, but he shook his head. “Just gonna head home tonight, I think.”
Luka looked over to Dorian Finney-Smith, who was in the locker next to Dwight’s. “How about you, Dorian?”
Dorian also shook his head. “Nah. You go ahead though. You don’t get the full Taco Bell experience until you’re standing in front of that huge menu trying to figure out which ten things you’re gonna order.”
At the mention of a large Taco Bell order, Dwight sat up. “Hey, I thought you were afraid to eat at the Bell because it doesn’t fit in your diet plan.”
Luka lowered his voice. “My dietician won’t know about it as long as you keep your voice down,” he replied with a laugh. Taking out his phone, he said into it “Taco Bell near me” and waited for the device to give him directions. When the map of downtown Dallas was suddenly awash in icons which each indicated a separate Taco Bell location, he tapped the one closest to the arena and saw that it was an easy walk. “See you guys later. I’ve got a Wrapped Super Crunch in my future.”
“Crunchwrap Supreme!” Dorian called out as Luka walked out the locker room door.
Luka stood in front of the huge menu, feeling grateful that there was nobody behind him in line to pressure him. There were too many options, and they all sounded tasty. Most of the terms were familiar to him (“taco”, “burrito”), but some were not (“chalupa”, “gordita”). He found his knowledge of Spanish to be more of a hindrance than a help as his eyes scanned across the vast plethora of food choices presented to him.
“Whenever you’re ready,” the bored-looking cashier said, and this interruption caused Luka to self-consciously wonder how long he had been staring at the menu. One minute? Two minutes? Five? His sense of time was being warped by the bright lights and the delicious smells. Deciding not to waste any more time, he stepped up to the register.
“I’ll have a Supreme Crunchywrap,” he started, before remembering the correct phraseology. “Sorry, a Crunchwrap Supreme. Uh, three of them.” Already feeling embarrassed and flustered by his botching of the beginning of the order, he struggled to maintain his composure as he continued. “And, uh, and the fries, the nacho fries, one order of those. Does that come with the cheese dip?”
“Yup,” replied the bored cashier, who was boredly pushing buttons on the keypad in front of him.
“Great,” Luka said. “And, um, two burritos.”
The cashier looked up from the register. “What kind of burritos?”
Luka felt his face turn red. There was more than one kind of burrito? “Uh…” he stammered as his eyes darted across the menu in a panic. Finally, he saw where the different types of burritos were listed, and noticed there was one that was labeled “supreme”. Given how tasty the Crunchwrap Supreme had been, he figured that other similarly-titled items would be just as delicious. “Yeah, uh, two Burrito Supremes. And a big drink.”
The total price was slightly higher than Luka expected, given Dorian’s previous proclamations about how cheap Taco Bell was, but Luka realized he should have been ordering from the so-called “value menu” if he had wanted a good deal. After handing the cashier his credit card and receiving it back along with a large drink cup, Luka proceeded to the soda machine. Filling the cup with ice and Baja Blast Mountain Dew, he was surprised that his food was ready for him on a tray before he had even put a lid on the cup.
“Thank you,” he told the cashier before grabbing the tray and heading to one of the many empty tables in the deserted restaurant. It occurred to him that choosing a Taco Bell location so close to the arena was a bad idea, as a Mavericks fan could easily walk in and snap a picture of him, a picture which would likely go viral. Figuring it was too late to worry about those things, he sat down in a booth and started unwrapping one of his burritos, feeling an unreasonable amount of excitement for the food that was about to enter his mouth.
When Luka came back to his senses, he was face down in a pile of wrappers, a half-eaten nacho fry in his hand. “Wuuhhhhh,” he moaned as he sat up. What time was it? And how could his body feel both so good and so bad at the same time? Somehow, he still craved the food, but there was none of it left except for the single fry.
“Churros…” he muttered. “Lemme get some churros to go, please.” Then, he slumped forward again, unconscious.