This is 36-year-old Colin Gray from Austin. On Wednesday evening, he got a bit "grumpy about how sometimes people default to taking issues to the internet instead of talking to the people involved," he told BuzzFeed News. So he ranted about it...on the internet.
"if you need information from someone, you can ask them instead of the internet," Gray began his tweetstorm.
"...you can call [them] on the phone. Or like email. or you could text."
To make a point, he then randomly included Chili's restaurants in his rant: "You can just blindly ask facebook...or chilis. Sometimes @Chilis knows."
That's when someone jokingly inquired what he could possibly want to know from Chili's. So Gray responded with a serious question about his medical bills, and why there's a discrepancy between his health care's copay plan and actual billed costs.
Then, late Wednesday night, Chili's tweeted back an answer for Gray, explaining, "If your deductible hasn't been met, your copay is how much it costs to simply leave your doctor's office. They can charge way more later."
Gray said he and his friends enjoy Chili's food and general presence, so he was pleased to hear from them. He thanked the restaurant chain for teaching him something new.
Other people then began asking the restaurant chain questions, and Chili's responded with some sage advice.
People were generally shocked and amused by the whole correspondence.
And many were appreciative, but confused: "I have no idea why I am getting this information from @Chili's but thank you. My medical bills make a lot more sense now."
People joked about how the restaurant chain seems to know more about the American health care infrastructure than some politicians.
Some joked about Chili's running for office, or helping to solve the national health care debate.
Chili's social media team told BuzzFeed News they answered Gray's question because "life's too short not to have fun with it."
"As you can see, we don't take ourselves too seriously on social," said social media manager Justin Runyon.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, though, the Chili's team dodged questions about the restaurant's opinion on overhauling health care (we tried).
FWIW, Gray told BuzzFeed News he is "ardently for single-hpayer" insurance, but appreciates Chili's for helping to make sense of the current system. "Chili's is not a healthy place to eat but it was a good answer," he said.
In conclusion, this is what 2017 has come to: "Casual dining chains are explaining the fuckery that is our healthcare / insurance system."
Tanya Chen is a social news reporter for BuzzFeed and is based in New York.
Contact Tanya Chen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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