October Theme Of The Month: Halloween!

Not So Sweet On Sugar Or Honey

| IL, USA | Bigotry, Language & Words

(I was born and raised in the country, and my area uses terms such as ‘honey’, ‘sweetie,’ and ‘dear’ to speak to everyone, including strangers. It’s just how I talk. I am taking care of a customer in the coffee shop.)

Me: “Hey, sugar, how can I help you today?”

Customer: “I don’t want sugar.”

Me: *chuckling* “Sorry, honey, I didn’t mean that. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Excuse me?”

Me: “Umm… how can I help you?”

(The customer places her order, but seems very agitated. I turn on my sweetest smile and small talk.)

Customer: “Look, can I just get my d*** coffee, please?”

Me: “Sure, coming right up, babe!”

Customer: “Are you a lesbian?”

Me: “Um… no?”

Customer: “Then why were you just hitting on me?”

Me: “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “Why did you just call me babe and try to ask me out?”

Me: *chuckling* “Oh, I’m sorry, that’s just how I talk. I don’t mean anything by it; I was raised in a family that uses terms of endearment in everyday conversation.”

Customer: “Oh, so you’re a hillbilly?”

Me: “Um, kind of, yeah… I’m from the country.”

Customer: “Well, that explains so much!”

Me: *a little hurt, but still smiling* “I’m sorry if you took offense; I didn’t mean anything by it. Just trying to be friendly.”

Customer: “I don’t need you to be friendly, I am certainly not your friend, thank you very much. I need you to do your d*** job. Don’t call people ‘sweetie’ or ‘honey’. Only idiots do that, and it’s really f***ing rude.”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry, ma’am. I didn’t realize that it was. No one has ever said that to me before.”

Customer: “Ugh, don’t call me ‘ma’am,’ either. What do I look like, some old lady?”

Me: “I’m sorry, miss, I didn’t mean anything by it.”

Customer: “Oh my god, did you go to some idiot academy or something? Do you not see the ring on my finger?” *proceeds to flash her ring*

Me: “Well, what do you want me to call you?”

Customer: “My d*** name! Is that so f***ing hard?”

Me: “How would I know your name? I’ve never met you before, and you never told me.”

Customer: “Well, you should’ve asked! So rude and dumb! There’s just no respect for people anymore!” *stalks away*

(She leaves me standing there, dumbfounded and upset. Later, I asked my boss if I’d get in trouble. Thankfully, my boss told me she’d have a few choice names to call that lady the next time she came in!)

Follow The Trail Of Cookie Crumbs

| Pittsburgh, PA, USA | Bizarre, Criminal/Illegal

(I am working in a ‘Mom & Pop’ coffee shop, where things are run by an owner who is hardly around and no managers. Baristas only work with coworkers on the morning shift. This takes place on a weekday afternoon with only me working and few customers around.)

Customer: “It’s my birthday. I get something for free, right?”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t do that here.”

(The customer points to brownies, which are our most expensive pastry item.)

Customer: “I can get one of those for free, right?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we just don’t give free items to people on their birthdays.”

Customer: “But it’s my birthday!”

Me: “Maybe Starbucks down the street has that sort of item. We’re a privately owned Mom & Pop coffee shop, and our owner doesn’t offer that sort of thing.”

Customer: “Get your manager. He’ll give it to me.”

Me: “He’s not around at the moment.”

Customer: *points to brownies again* “How much are those?”

Me: “$2.25.”

(The customer wanders away. I see him meander over to some other customers enjoying their coffee at a table and strikes up a conversation with them. This isn’t unusual, as our coffee shop is quite a neighborhood social spot. After a few minutes, he begins talking to another customer. Then, he comes back to counter.)

Customer: *dumps load of change on counter* “How much will this buy me?”

(I realize that he had been hitting up the other customers for change. I suddenly realize that there is something very off about this customer, and am a bit scared, but because I am alone I decide the best thing to do is help him and get him out of the coffee shop as quickly as possible.)

Me: *counting* “You have about $3.00.”

Customer: “What can that buy me?”

Me: *points to menu* “Anything under $3.00 on that menu.”

Customer: *points to brownies* “Can it buy me that?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: *points to cookies* “Can it buy me that?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Okay, I’ll take one of those and one of those.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but cookies are $1.40. With the brownie it will cost you $3.65. You don’t have enough money for both. But you can buy two cookies.”

Customer: “Okay. I’ll take that.” *points to cookie* “Can you microwave it for me?”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we don’t have a microwave. I can put it in the convection oven for you.”

Customer: “You don’t have a microwave?”

Me: “No.”

Customer: points to toaster* “Put it in there.”

Me: “In the toaster?”

Customer: “Yeah.”

Me: *reluctantly* “Alright.”

(As I toast the cookie, the customer pulls out a cellphone and plays around with it.)

Customer: “I’ll sell you this cellphone for $15.”

Me: “Thanks, but I already have a cellphone.”

Customer: “But then you’d have two cellphones!”

Me: “I can’t afford another one, thanks.”

Customer: *punching some buttons on cellphone* “Hey, what’s your number?”

Me: “I’m sorry, I don’t give that out to customers.”

Customer: “You’re a cute girl. I’ll show you a good time.”

Me: “I already have a boyfriend.”

Customer: “So?”

Me: “Uh, no thanks.”

(The cookie pops up from the toaster, which I put in a bag and take to the counter to give to the customer. That’s when two cops enter from the coffee shop’s front door and two cops enter from the coffee shop’s side door, surrounding the customer.)

Cop: “All right, buddy, you’re coming with us.”

Customer: *reaches for cookie and change* “All right, I just need to get my stuff.”

Cop: “She’ll hold onto it for you. Just come outside now.”

(The customer leaves coffee shop with cops, where he is handcuffed and taken away. Another cop comes back in to explain that he had been panhandling in all of the stores on our street, acting just as erratic as he had in our coffee shop. Several of the other store owners had alerted the cops after he left their businesses, and they followed the trail of weird to our coffee shop.)

Pray She Doesn’t Order The Number Two

| ON, Canada | Bad Behavior, Bizarre, Family & Kids, Health & Body

(A woman and her two kids come in looking for the washrooms. An employee tells her that they are outside and around the corner, near the drive-through. She leaves to go find them.)

Coworker: *to me* “Oh my God! Come see this!”

Me: “Yeah?”

(I walk over to the drive-through window and poke my head out. There, in the middle of the drive-through, is the woman holding one of her kids up horizontally as the child urinates on the drive-through in front of me while holding up several vehicles. She looks up and sees me, looks me straight in the eye the entire time, and finishes without a word.)

Me: *to my coworkers* “I’m going for break.”

Getting Them Back Is True Therapy, Part 2

| Melbourne, VIC, Australia | Awesome Customers, Awesome Workers, Bigotry, Health & Body, Top

(We have a regular customer who was diagnosed with breast cancer and had lost all her hair from the Chemo. She is only 17 at the time. Everyone who goes to the shop more than once knows her. I’m a barista who is out the back getting ready for my shift in few minutes. Three very obnoxious customers came in and began to talk very loudly at the end of a mildly long line.)

Customer #1: “Ugh, why did we have to come to this hipster place? It’s so trashy!”

Customer #2: “I know! Everyone is so stuck up with their MacBooks and iPads! Like, get a life!”

Customer #3: “And everyone looks so ugly! Look at that girl in the corner! She has no hair!”

Customer #2: “That’s because she’s super hipster! She does it for no other reason than because no one else is!”

Customer #1: “Oh, my God! Ew!”

(At this point pretty much everyone inside has heard what they’ve said and is looking in the general direction of the trio. Customer #3 seems to notice this and quietens up. Two police officers (both regulars) walk in and join the line behind the three customers. The three customers talk like this for another minute before one deliberately talks loudly enough for the whole place to hear.)

Customer #1: “Hipsters are stupid! Your head looks retarded; I mean come on, who would want to be bald and ugly like you?!”

(At this point, the girl in the corner starts to cry a little bit. Everyone around her begins to comfort her, but the barista loses his cool.)

Barista: “No. You do not talk to her that way! Get out of my store! The three of you! You’re not welcome here! Ever!”

Customer #1: “I’ve been waiting in line for 10 minutes (more like three) and I’m not leaving without my coffee!”

Customer #2: “Yeah, we deserve our coffee!”

(Customer #3 hasn’t said a word since she walked in, and begins to walk out and wait outside for the other two.)

Customer #2: *to Customer #3* “Where are you going?! Don’t wuss out! We need to get our coffee before next class!”

Barista: “Take your friends advice and, for the last time, leave.”

Customers #1 & 2: “No!”

Police Officer #1: “You two have been asked to leave by the gentlemen behind the counter. I suggest you do so.”

Customer #2: “That hipster can’t make us leave!”

Customer #1: “We have rights!”

Police Officer #1: “So does everyone else here and you are violating them. You’ve visibly upset this poor girl who’s going through the toughest time in her life right now.”

Customer #1: “As if! We go to Uni! We get way more stressed!”

Police Officer #2: “We’re not here to argue with you. Either leave or you’ll both be arrested for trespassing since you’ve already been asked to leave twice.”

Customer #1: “You cant f***ing do that! We haven’t done anything wrong and we’re not f***ing leaving until we get our f***ing coffee, you a**hole!”

Police Officer #2: “That’s it, turn around, hands behind your back.”

Police Officer #1: “Now.”

(As the officers try to motion them to turn around, they resist and begin to try and push the officers away. After a bit more fighting, the unruly customers end on the ground, squealing with their hands cuffed. As the officers are radioing in for a car, everyone is comforting the girl in the corner, whose name is Hannah. However, they quickly begin laughing their heads off as Hannah herself is jumping up and down (in the literal sense) in her seat with the biggest smile on her face. Her father later comes in as news spreads and buys everyone a drink. A couple of years later, Hannah has beaten her cancer but remains bald for her own personal reasons. She’s still stops by every few weeks to chat and everyone loves her. Even the two police officers stop by at least once a week. We all refer to that as the day as ‘The Most Awesome Day Ever’.)

Getting Them Back Is True Therapy

Venting About Ventis

| Tucson, AZ, USA | Crazy Requests, Food & Drink

(I’m a semi-regular patron of a local coffee shop. I witness this exchange taking place.)

Customer: “I’ll take a venti caramel machiatto, a venti iced peppermint mocha, and a venti butterscotch latte.”

Cashier: “Ma’am, we don’t offer any of those flavors apart from the peppermint mocha.”

Customer: “Well, of course you offer those. I was just looking at your online menu.”

Cashier: “Ma’am, we have never offered venti sizing. We just call it large. And we have never offered caramel machiatto or butterscotch lattes. I’m not sure any coffee shop offers butterscotch lattes.”

Customer: “I want a f***ing caramel machiatto and a butterscotch latte!”

Cashier: “If you’ll look at the menu, we do offer a salted caramel.”

Customer: “I don’t want a f***ing salted caramel. I can’t have salt; I’m on a no-salt diet. Let me speak to your manager.”

(The manager is called, and repeats the same thing the cashier has been saying.)

Customer: “I don’t understand why you won’t just f***ing make me my f***ing coffee order. It isn’t that difficult! Three venti coffees, one a caramel machiatto, one an iced peppermint mocha, and one a butterscotch latte. For f***’s sake, I order the same thing every day!”

Manager: “That isn’t possible, as we don’t offer two of those drinks. I think you want the [popular coffee chain] down the road.”

Customer: “No, I always come here and get those three drinks! I want my f***ing coffee and I’m not leaving until I get it.”

(Finally, I’ve had enough, and I speak up.)

Me: “Ma’am, they’ve told numerous times that they don’t offer those drinks. You don’t seem to get it, so I’m going to explain it again. This shop does not offer caramel machiattos or butterscotch lattes. They do not refer to their larges as ‘venti’. I’m sure they would be happy to make you a large iced peppermint mocha, but they cannot make you the other drinks. You would have to go somewhere else for them.”

Customer: “I’m not leaving until I get my f***ing drinks!”

Me: “Then you’ll be waiting an awfully long time. Meanwhile, there is a line behind you, and I’m now twenty minutes late for class, so if you would kindly get out of the way so I can order?”

(The customer mutters about the quality of service and swears not to come back, but leaves.)

Manager: *to me* “Whatever you’re getting, it’s on the house for getting rid of her. Just don’t try to order a venti.”

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