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    Will Have To Wait For The Correct Answer

    | IN, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Theme Of The Month

    (I have just finished at the doctor’s office and talk my mom into taking me to get some coffee. We decide to go through the drive-thru as I need to get back to school and her to work. She is driving and I’m riding shotgun.)

    Cashier: “What can I get for you today?”

    Mom: “Two coffees, please.”

    Cashier: “That’ll be [total]. Please pull around to the window.”

    (As there is a long line, it takes about 10 minutes before we finally get to the window.)

    Cashier: “Sorry about the wait.”

    Mom: “Oh, I’m doing fine. How about you?”

    (At this, the cashier gets a deer-in-the-headlights look as he does not know how to respond to this break in the conversational cycle. I, however, am cracking up.)

    Mom: *looks at the cashier and then at me* “What’s so funny?”

    Me: “Mom, he said sorry about the wait.”

    Mom: “Oh! I thought he said ‘how are you.’” *turns to the cashier* “I’m sorry. You can laugh at me if you want…”

    Meatballs-Out Crazy Request

    | CT, USA | Crazy Requests, Food & Drink

    (The building out of which I have operated my shop for the last 2.5 years was originally built as an Italian restaurant. The restaurant went out of business over a decade ago, and my coffee shop is only the latest in a string of businesses that have occupied the property since then.)

    Me: *answering the phone* “Good afternoon, [Coffee Shop].”

    Caller: “Oh, um, hi… This is going to sound a little stupid…”

    Me: “No, don’t worry. What can I help you with?”

    Caller: “Well, my name is [Caller], and I just really loved [Original Restaurant]‘s meatballs and sauce. I was wondering if you still had any, or if you knew how to get some?”

    Me: *speechless*

    Caller: “They were just so good! Do you know where they might have opened up again?”

    Me: “No… Not at all.”

    Caller: “Oh, that’s disappointing. What a shame. They were just so good. I—”

    Me: “All right. Well, if that’s all, I—”

    Caller: “But they were just so good!”

    Sorry, Please Chai Again

    | Olympia, WA, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Liars & Scammers

    (I am working in a new coffee shop on campus that is very busy at certain times of the day. We start to notice a professor pulling a scam on us at our peak times. Every day she waits until we are really busy. She waits with her friend in line but does not order anything. Then, after ‘waiting’ a while, she demands to know where her drink is. Several students are pulling this scam as well. We put up a sign that says you have to present your receipt, and make sure we tell everyone that orders. All the scams stop, except one.)

    Professor: *slamming her hand over and over on the pickup counter* “Where is my chai!? Where is my chai!?”

    Coworker: “Do you have your receipt?”

    Professor: *indignant* “No.”

    Coworker: “Then you don’t have a chai.”

    (She never tried to pull the scam on us again!)

    Didn’t See That (Second) Coming

    | Detroit, MI, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Religion

    (I run an independent coffeehouse on the main drag in a small town. A regular walks in, doing her usual purposeful strut to the counter.)

    Me: “Hey [Name], how’s it going?”

    Customer: “Good. You know what I want?”

    (I nod as I begin making her nonfat, no carb latte with extra ice.)

    Customer: “You know, I like Criss Angel…”

    Me: “Yeah, he’s… something all right.”

    Customer: “You know…” *drifts off for a second before coming back down to earth with the rest of us* “I really think he’s the second coming…”

    (I stop what I’m doing to look at her as I wait for the punchline. Turns out it’s not coming.)

    Customer: “He can do everything Jesus could do.”

    (I’m still waiting for the ‘HA! Funny huh?,’ but I see she’s dead serious and waiting for commiseration.)

    Me: “Criss Angel is a magician.”

    Customer: *nods smiling*

    Me: “An illusionist. He does tricks.”

    Customer: *her smile slowly fades to a look of total desolation* “Oh.”

    (I finished her latte and rung her up. She didn’t say anything else and walked out looking much less sure of herself. I almost felt bad.)

    Dethroning Assumptions

    | NY, USA | Books & Reading, Geeks Rule, Movies & TV

    (During a quiet moment at work, I overhear a college-aged guy snickering as he watches a woman in her mid-twenties at the next table. She’s reading ‘A Game of Thrones.’)

    Woman: *finally sets down the book and smiles politely at him* “Can I help you?”

    Guy: *still snickering a little, gesturing to her book* “Let me guess. You’re reading those because of the show, right? And the hot guys on it?”

    (This is so out of line that I consider intervening, but before I can, the woman the guy the most condescending smile I’ve ever seen in my life.)

    Woman: “I’m sorry. How old are you?”

    Guy: “What? Why?”

    Woman: “This book came out in 1996. I’m curious to see if you were even alive when it was first published.”

    (The guy gapes at her, then scowls, mutters a sexist slur, and gets up to storm out. The woman notices me watching and grins.)

    Woman: “This is my fourth time through these books, and I bet you anything I was reading the first one before he even knew how to read. Plus I’m gay, so I actually watch the show for the hot ladies!”

    (Faced with this, I do the only thing I possibly can and bow deeply to her.)

    Me: “Khaleesi!”


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