Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Cafe Customers

Working in a busy cafe means I get the privilege of meeting a wide array of customers. Lots are really nice, others less so, and some float about in the middle. Some traits pop up pretty frequently, and secretly playing customer bingo makes my day at work even more enjoyable. I'm also a massive fan of a good old list, so for my listing pleasure and your amusement, I present you with a small introduction to get your bingo games rolling.

'Poached Egg Man' saving the world.

1. The Regulars
 I'll see them all the time, but I often don't know their names. This means I'm 'forced' to name them, being really imaginative, I often use their orders. I find this adds a sense of mystery. 'Poached Egg Man' busies himself by writing page after page in some strange hieroglyphic, and is most definitely a secret agent.

 'Latte Man' on the other hand always has a book. He dresses well, questioned me keenly about university, and is probably a crazy clever academic. I feel like he's a walking treasure chest of book recommendations, and I always take a peak at that day's cover. However he's often alone, much like the lovely 'Cappuccino Lady'. I long for the day when they frequent the café at the same time and become the best of friends.

I know the names of some of the others, but café confidentiality stops me shouting them out here ;) All you need to know, is that seeing a familiar face in the mist of a seemingly never ending queue, during a seemingly never ending day, can really cheer me up. I like the regulars, even especially the cheeky ones that ask (using loud whispers and not so discreet mimes) if they can steal a newspaper.

1 portion of milk = approx 10000
hours running.

2. Health Freaks
I respect their intentions, I really do. Sometimes I just feel that people's attempts to have a healthy diet can border on the ridiculous. When you regretfully inform a customer you only have semi skimmed milk for their 'skinny' *insert type of coffee here* (or even small pot or breakfast tea) and receive looks that could only be appropriate if you were a child murdering psychopath, I feel their priorities are slightly off.

3. The Illogical 
I have more tolerance for this confused little group. Some appear to be wannabe health freaks, that just don't quite have the hate for all things nice, like cake. I'm seriously suspicious of people that don't like cake.

A nice example is the 'decaf SKINNY cappuccino with extra chocolate sprinkles please'. They may only be sprinkles, but yelling skinny at the top of your voice doesn't cover them up. Does it? Or am I missing a nice diet trick here? I'll happily be proven wrong.  

Skinny chocolate sprinkles at least makes more sense than the 'black coffee' lady that came storming back complaining that she didn't have any milk. Or the 'hot chocolate with no sprinkles'. Its a hot chocolate, you like chocolate, all it does it make it look pretty.

4. The 'Comedians' 
These are by no means the worst, I'll even smile and give them a convincing fake laugh. However, there's about a 90% chance that I've heard the joke countless times before.

Drop me a vegetable pun instead, then i'll think you're a pretty fungi.

5. Baby Gaggles

Groups of frazzled mums that come with more babies than you can count are popular during the week. They have a much harder job than me, so listening to their child scream for a few hours, and cleaning a table that seems to have been hit by a bomb afterwards is the least I can do.

A happy chilled lunch date.
However, the ones I have a bit less time for are 5b. The 'yummy mummies'. They're far more interested in intense conversations about the latest fad diet, new Cath Kidston print or school run gossip, to listen to me when I tell them I'll bring their order to the table. I don't mind too much when I'm ignored. This information or me, is not the most exciting part of anyone's day, but when they thank me before immediately asking 'does my order get brought to the table', I get a little fed up.

The stuff of nightmares.
6. 'No I'M PAYING' 
I've been there, I understand. Its nice to split the bill, or pay for your friend's coffee every now and again. I just don't like it when two sets off people competitively throw me money and make me pick. One of them is always left feeling sad. I like making customers happy with a little heart shape on their coffee or an extra pot of boiling water to make an overpriced tea go that bit further. Settle arguments before you get to the till, then we can allll be friends. Or happy strangers, I'm not fussed.

Nice and nice.
7. Super Lovelies
This cheery group can be found scattered through all the above categories. If I've seemed a little harsh, these are the most common! Some compliment me on my little hearts, others ask how I am, engage in a spot of  pleasant small talk, or you know, are just polite. If you're moderately polite I'll serve you an awkward order HAPPILY, without secretly sulking. I know it's my job, I'll always do it, (even if your ridiculously rude) but its just nice to be nice to people, yah know?  


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