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    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!”

    Time To Call It A Night

    | ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Theme Of The Month

    (I work the overnight shift. There is an older gentleman who says he can’t sleep at night so he often comes through my drive thru on his scooter to talk to someone. I feel bad for him at night and talk with him because there’s no way for him to get inside, but whenever I see him in the light of day he gets a lot creepier. It’s about 6:30 in the morning when I’m leaving work. My dad has come in to offer me a ride home when the customer rides into the parking lot.)

    Customer: *yelling across the parking lot to my dad* “Where are you going?! That’s my night time girlfriend!”

    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 7

    | Toronto, ON, Canada | Health & Body, Rude & Risque, Theme Of The Month

    (While I’m cleaning the men’s washroom, a regular has walked in.)

    Me: “I’m sorry. I’ll just be a minute longer and then you can use the washroom.”

    Customer: “Nope. Gotta go now.”

    Me: “Well, then, I’ll leave and finish when you’re done.”

    Customer: “Nah, don’t worry. I don’t have anything to hide.”

    (I only just managed to get out of the room before he finished opening his pants!)

    Related:
    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 6
    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 5
    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 4
    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 3
    On The Need For Hazard Pay, Part 2
    On The Need For Hazard Pay

    Stay Barred Or Behind Bars

    | AB, Canada | Bad Behavior, Extra Stupid

    (I work at a well known coffee shop as a barista. This particular customer was a regular before he was banned from our location because he would often host religious, awkward rants with random customers in line. Management has informed us to call the police anytime he enters the cafe now. The banned customer enters the cafe, and instead of entering a line for the cash register, he approaches me on bar.)

    Me: “You know you can’t be in here, [Banned Customer].”

    (My supervisor spots him and right away grabs the phone and heads into the employees only room.)

    Banned Customer: “Can I just get a drink before the cops get here? I’ll leave right after.”

    Me: I don’t think you understand the whole ‘you’re not allowed in here’ part.”

    (The banned customer cast me a spiteful eye glare and defeatedly walked out, but not before taking a shaker of nutmeg off of the condiment bar. He still comes in.)

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