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  • Milk It For All Its Work

    | Toronto, ON, Canada | Bizarre, Food & Drink, Top

    (A regular walks into the shop, makes his usual order, and pays for it. But instead of waiting at the bar, he pulls out an empty litre plastic bottle. He then pulls out a little funnel and fills the bottle to the brim with our coffee shop’s milk and stands at the bar looking smug until his drink arrives.)

    Coworker: “That’s a lot of milk you’ve got there.”

    Customer: “I know… I have to make ends meet somehow, with the prices that you charge. That’s like five bucks worth of milk in there.”

    Coworker: “Well, sir, the other customers might want some, too.”

    Customer: “I’m setting an example. How much do these cost to make? Milk, coffee, energy, wages. Less than I just paid for it. So, according to Marx’s theory of materialist dialectics, you’re extracting surplus value from me, the consumer. I’m just getting back some of what you owe me, and all the other customers should too.”

    (At this point, everyone is looking at us, and the manager comes over to intervene.)

    Manager: “Sir, our margins are pretty tight and that…” *points at the milk* “…is WAY more than the surplus value. Anyway, I haven’t done the calculation but I’d say most of the surplus value you contribute goes to homeless people and the ones who come in here and make themselves cinnamon milk to drink. You pay according to your ability, and they get according to their need. Yeah?”

    Customer: *goes quiet and walks out, leaving his milk on the bar*

    Manager: “Don’t try and school me on Marxist theory, a**hole.”

    Colorful Comments Can Get You Burned

    | Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Health & Body

    (A customer in maybe her late 40s or early 50s walks up to the counter while she waits for her drink.)

    Customer: “Oh honey, are you okay?”

    Me: “Well, yeah…why?”

    Customer: “Your skin… it’s so pale!”

    Me: “Oh, I’m just naturally very fair-skinned. Whole family is.”

    Customer: “But sweetie, you look awful.”

    Me: “…I’m sorry?”

    Customer: “You look just AWFUL! So sickly.”

    Me: “Well, thank you for your concern, but I feel just fine.”

    Customer: “No, really, you look TERRIBLE!”

    Me: “Gee, thanks.”

    Customer: “What?! I’m just trying to be helpful! You should really see a doctor about that skin of yours, you just look horrible!” *takes her drink and leaves*

    Me: “Uh… what just happened?”

    (At this point, another younger, female customer speaks up.)

    Another Customer: “Some giant piece of old burnt toast trying to reclaim her long lost youth.”

    How About A Catpuccino Instead

    | Iowa, USA | Bizarre, Food & Drink, Pets & Animals

    (I am working at the drive up window at a locally owned coffee shop. Our blended drinks are called “coolers.” A customer in his mid-forties pulls up to the window.)

    Customer: “Do you make your coolers with yogurt or cat?”

    Me: *confused* “I’m sorry?”

    Customer: “Do you make your coolers with…” *makes a “meow” sound* “…cats or yogurt?”

    Me: “Uh, we use milk or iced coffee depending on how many calories you want in the drink.”

    Customer: “Oh. No thank you.”

    Me: “Can I make you something else then?”

    Customer: “NO! Maybe if you used cats.”

    Me: “Uh…Okay, I’m—”

    Customer: “MEOW!” *drives off quickly*

    The Only Foaming Is At Her Mouth

    | Charlotte, NC, USA | Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

    (I work at a campus coffee house, which is primarily student-run. At least 80% of our customers are other students or teachers who all know us. Occasionally, we get new customers who don’t understand that we’re not a major chain.)

    Customer: “Can I have a latte with no foam?”

    Me: “Certainly.”

    (I ring the customer up, she gets her latte and leaves. Five minutes later, she comes storming back in, elbowing all the other customers out of her way and shoving the latte in my face.)

    Customer: “DOES THIS LOOK LIKE NO FOAM TO YOU?”

    (I look down, and all that’s on the top of the latte is two or three bubbles from the steamed milk. It’s definitely no foam.)

    Me: “Um… well, honestly ma’am, I don’t see any foam at all, but I’d be happy to remake it for you—”

    Customer: “WHAT IS SO HARD TO UNDERSTAND ABOUT ‘NO FOAM?!’”

    (At this point, my manager comes over.)

    Manager: “Ma’am, there is a line, and my employee needs to get other people their orders. I’ll be happy to remake it, but this is our rush hour and it might take a few minutes.”

    Customer: “YOU REMAKE IT, RIGHT NOW!”

    (While my manager remakes the latte—he’s even moved it forward in the line—the customer grumbles and complains about me to everyone else who is waiting, three of whom happen to be my teachers. I hand one of my teachers their order, and she gives me a huge smile.)

    My Teacher: “Thank you SO much. I know it’s really hard to juggle work with school. And, look at that! My drink looks perfect. I’ll see you in class later. ”

    (My teacher even makes a point of taking a huge sip and exclaiming, “Delicious!” before giving the rude customer a cheeky grin and exiting the store.)

    Customer: “I… well, I…. IT’S NOT HARD TO…”

    Manager: “Ma’am, here’s your drink.”

    Customer: “THERE’S STILL FOAM—”

    Manager: “Ma’am, those are bubbles from pouring the milk into the espresso. That is not foam.”

    (At this point, the other customers start giggling. Without a word, the customer yanks the drink from him and leaves. At least she never came back!)

    The Son Will Come Up, Tomorrow

    | Denver, CO, USA | Awesome Customers, Family & Kids, Food & Drink

    (Note: I am currently two weeks into my new job, and am the newest employee on staff. I’m working the drive-thru.)

    Me: “Welcome to [coffee shop]. I hope you’re having a great morning! Can I take your order?”

    Customer: “I want a nonfat venti latte, seven pumps of vanilla, extra whipped cream, and you’d better make it fast, b****! I can’t believe you folks are so slow. This is a DRIVE-THRU! I shouldn’t even have to stop my car!”

    Me: *mortified* “We’ll have that right up for you. Please pull around for your total.”

    (When the car reaches the window, I see that the woman’s adult son, a regular customer, is driving the car.)

    Customer’s Son: “I’m so sorry about my mother. She’s a cranky old b**** who doesn’t know how to shut her mouth. Thanks for the coffee. Here’s a tip for putting up with her bulls***!”

    (He drops a ten-dollar bill into our tip jar before driving off. He now comes back as a regular customer each morning—without his mother. He always tips generously and has something nice to say to me!)

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