dear customer:

Sorry, I was so rude today and didn’t answer your question. Probably, because you directed it as more of a statement than question. I wasn’t quite sure how to respond to, “well, someone’s gotta put your kids through college,” after I accidentally rang up your order incorrectly.

Since, our interaction was brief, I just want you to know, I don’t have any children. But, I’m putting myself through college (for the second time), because I know you’ve been dying to hear my answer. I would have shared that with you, but between the time you of ordering and my hand jotting down your drink code, you didn’t ask. Do you have children? So, rude of me not to ask in return.

I do love kids though. I am volunteering several times a month teaching first graders how to read and serving with my church’s youth ministry. Things I could have mentioned, but we were both very busy.

There’s something that makes me think you really weren’t concerned about my “kids”, and my financial well-being, but before you jump to a conclusion about my situation, you should step back to realize a coffee order being rang up incorrectly is a definition of “first-world problems.”

I’ve worked for everything I’ve received, and have worked very hard. I don’t rely on assistances or allowances which I am sadly realizing you were implying. When the going has gotten tough, I’ve rolled up my sleeves and gotten to work. When I have been hungry, I’ve ventured out of the cave to kill something to bring home. And when I do have children, I will expect them to do the same. If killing something to me means writing down your drink order and adding extra whipped cream, I guess that’s what I have to do. A person with an ego about how they make money, doesn’t deserve to make it.

I don’t want to assume that anyone ever raised you to treat people the way you treat me today. I’m sure it’s something you saw on television. Maybe, you were just having a bad day. Sorry if this response is out of line.

Yours Truly,

Smiling Barista

5 thoughts on “dear customer:

  1. I hope the fact that I was genuinely confused about her comment makes you feel better. I had to read the first paragraph a couple times. It’s hard to believe people have such narrow minded, splint second, judgments. And what’s truly ironic about her is if she had ever actually had to work hard for school, children, or whatever, she would never have said something like that to you! Guarantee she had her way paid through college by her parents, but she’s more than happy to hand out insults to other’s trying to get by on their own. I just try to remember this quote:
    When people are rude it says very little about you, but says everything about them.


  2. Working with the public can be a very hard and enlightening experience. I am glad you are using it to look at yourself and realize that you are one hell of a person… Remembering who you are, where you came from and what you have accomplished is what it is all about. Don’t let them get you down but use it as a life experience. Love you and so damn proud of you!


  3. I REALLY enjoyed reading this! I worked in retail for two years. As the holiday season encroached, seems it only got worse. Reading your experience brought it all back. Although I don’t work for the public anymore, I am always very careful of how I treat people in restaurants and retail. I’ve been “there” and “done that”, it’s humbled me.

    I can relate when I say, I have probably written quite a few of these “excerpts” in my head. Don’t you just wish you could mail them out to the offenders? Ooooh wait, that would be bad customer service… wishful thinking.


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