I've been in the coffee business for awhile now. I worked for three years while I was in high school, and now that I'm 400 miles away and a junior in college, I work at another coffee shop.
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In general, I keep a smile on my face and an upbeat attitude, but after a particularly long day at work, I feel I need to rant and rave about proper coffee etiquette for those of you who need your caffeine fix.
Okay, here goes.
First of all, I am one of the fastest barista's in the company. I can take your huge order from you and whip them out in record time without making a mistake. But when you choose to pull up, already having seen the long line on both sides of my window, please don't tell me that you're in a hurry and I need to make your drink FAST. This will just make me move slower, because, what kind of idiot stops to get coffee when you're running late?
Having said that I am super fast, I am human, however, and do make mistakes on occasion. I know it was my fault, and if you come back I will be more than happy to remake it for you and offer you a second drink. But if you act like a dick that I accidentally gave you sugar free caramel in the 16oz instead of the 12oz, then that's just going to piss me off. Maybe if you hadn't rapid-fired your 7 drinks at me, then rolled your window up, I wouldn't mix things up.
Speaking of ordering 7 drinks... no big deal. But when you rack up a $28 tab, and don't leave a tip, that's just rude. It's even more rude when your company pays for your tab, and you still don't leave a tip. Would you spend $30 at a restaurant and not leave a tip? You would? Oh, well fuck you then.
Although appreciated, I don't expect a tip every time, nor do I think it's necessary. I work in a college town, I understand where you're coming from and don't expect you to tip me. When I worked at my first job, I worked in a ritzy part of town. People would drive through in a new Cayman or XJ8 and not tip. You can't afford it. Right.
Speaking of my first job, the owners were the prime example of how NOT to run a business. When you're too cheap to pay us every other week, and switch to once a month... PLEASE make sure you pay us ON TIME. Not 5 days late. Consistently. That's just unacceptable. And I'm sure you're also aware that we aren't Starbucks. Our 20oz drinks aren't called a "venti," so when your wife strolls in asking for a "venti" something, I want to shoot her. She's an idiot.
I consider myself well-educated... or at least in the process of getting smarter. Please don't talk down to me because I am a barista. To be honest, I don't need this job. My college education, rent and everything else is paid for and working here just gives me extra cash and I do it for the social interaction. I probably have less debt than you, so don't treat me like I'm stupid.
Please don't have your wife order from the passengers seat... I know you know nothing about coffee and you think you'll sound like an ass having her repeat things to you for you to tell to me, but the truth is I feel like the ass when I'm constantly having to ask "I'm sorry, what did she say?" numerous times because she's so damn quiet. SPEAK UP. Both of you.
It's cold. It's raining. I know you don't want to get wet or whatever, but when I'm actively communicating with you about your drink, stop rolling your window up. My drive-through windows are open so I can help YOU, I'm freezing my ass off for you, the least you could do is keep your window rolled down while I come back with your change. All the way down, not just 6".
Today was the first time encountering this... but when you are arguing with your significant other, please roll up your window. That was really, really awkward having to hear about how much of a "selfish whore" he was for not coming home last night. It was even more awkward to stand at the window with your drinks, waiting for you to notice me. This is the only time you have permission to leave your window up.
If you're hot and really nice to me, I'm probably going to give you a free drink. That's just the way it works. I'm in a committed relationship and this is my way of flirting without feeling guilty. Half the time I end up paying for your drink anyway, but it still makes me feel better. You get free coffee, I get to flirt, everybody wins.
Speaking of free drinks, I love when my friends come in to visit me, and I will probably give you guys free drinks. But when you start expecting it, deals off. I don't go into the bank you work at and expect free money. Although that would be nice.
You live here. You come here every single night. You know what hours we're open. Don't come in 5 minutes before I'm scheduled to close and expect me to make you one of everything. It's so rude.
I am not a garbage woman. I am not your mother. Don't ask me to throw away your garbage for you. We're close to a gas station, drive your ass down the road a minute and throw it away there. Oh wait, you're already running 10 minutes late for work...
And don't throw your garbage in my drive through or on the plants. Do you not have any respect for anything? I will write down your license plate number and report you. Chances are it's my ass that will have to clean up after you, and I don't want to touch your herpes infested McDonalds bag. I'll pass on that, thanks.
Now some shout outs:
To the creepy old guys... my eyes are up here, thanks. I know you're at the perfect tit-staring level, and I know they're nice, but look at my eyes. And don't wink. Not cute.
To the old couples that share drinks... you are way too cute. I hope I'm like you guys when I'm older. You don't have to share a chocolate covered coffee bean, though... I can spare a couple for the both of you, no big deal.
To the people who bring their dogs with them... I love it. It totally brightens my day to see your dogs wiggling body waiting to get a treat.
To the punk ass kids who steal tips from my tip jar... fuck you. You do realize we have cameras on the outside of our buildings and have already reported you to the cops. Be warned. Karma is a bitch.
To the people who park 4' away from the window. Seriously? Go back to drivers ed... I can't reach you. Go go gadget arms.
And to the guy that lives underneath me, I know you don't know I have to work at 5:30 in the morning, and yes, it is a Saturday night, but you live by yourself. Do you really need to CRANK your butt rock? Hell, I wouldn't even care if it were that loud, but it's the bass that kills me. Trying to fall asleep, feeling like I'm in a bed at the Playboy Mansion because my whole apartment is vibrating, in a word, sucks. I was just a little extra loud when I woke up this morning, and made sure my dog ran around a little too... oops.
But all in all, my customers are amazing. As a whole, everyone is really nice, and I truly, truly appreciate you guys.