Yesterday at work (not verbatim, but pretty damn close):
Customer to cashier: I want a capuccino.
Cashier: One cappucino.
Customer: With vanilla.
Cashier: Vanilla cappucino.
Customer: But not too much vanilla.
Cashier: Light vanilla…
Customer: No, i don’t want light vanilla, I want regular vanilla.
Cashier: Yes, ma’am, I meant “light” as in “not too much”…
Customer: But I don’t want too little either.
Three minutes later:
Same customer to barista*: You are making it wrong.
Barista: This is the light vanilla cappucino, ma’am?
Customer: I don’t want light vanilla, I want regular vanilla.
Barista: Ma’am, we don’t have light vanilla syrup, this is regular vanilla syrup. By “light” I mean “not too much”…
Customer: You are making it wrong.
After barista makes drink a second time, customer takes a sip, puts it down on the counter.
Customer: This has too much foam.
After barista makes drink a third time, customer takes a sip, puts it down on the counter.
Customer: This is too hot. I don’t know how you expect me to drink this. Are you trying to burn my mouth?
After barista makes drink a fourth time, customer grabs cup, hunts down yours truly, slams cup down on the counter between us.
Customer: She made it wrong. She put cold milk in it. I don’t want a cold drink. I want a warm drink. Why can’t you people make my drink correctly?
As I start to make the drink for the fifth time,
Customer: I don’t think it’s too much to ask to have my drink made the right way. I don’t want you to use cold milk. My drink should come up at the right temperature without you adding cold milk. You are making it wrong, I told you I don’t want cold milk!
Me: Ma’am, the steamer in the machine only has one temperature, if I don’t add at least some cold milk, it will be too hot again.
Customer: You are making it wrong again!
I finish making the cappuccino and hand it over for her to taste.
Customer: It’s the right temperature, but it doesn’t taste like coffee. Or vanilla. Did you put any espresso in here? It doesn’t taste like espresso. Why doesn’t it taste like espresso? And it doesn’t have enough vanilla. I told you I didn’t want you to put too little vanilla in it. Why is the foam white? Can’t you people stir customers’ drinks? And you didn’t give me a lid. Why didn’t you give me a lid?
One drink, one customer: three people, five fucking perfectly good espresso drinks–with vanilla syrup–and a fifteen minutes harangue.
~ ~ * ~ ~
This, my gentle visitors, is why some people go postal.
Please just put me out of my misery already.
~ ~ * ~ ~
* At this point, the customer is almost behind the counter, crowding the barista. I am standing less than five feet from the customer and can hear every single
whine word coming out of her mouth.