Tis the season for holiday travel. And boy oh boy, was there mayhem and madness at the airport on this Thursday morning (a full 8 days before the dreaded Christmas Eve
flights). Tempers flared, death stares flew, F bombs were dropped, general anger abounded. I’m not talking about the 20 minute line to check a bag. Aside from the child who lacked any sense of personal space and thought my camera bag was akin to a pillar he could lean against, that line moved quickly and smoothly. I’m also not talking about the dreaded security line with the evil, soul damaging x-ray scanners and the power-hungry, not-hugged-enough-as-children TSA agents. With the exception of the guy who took 4 tries to get through the metal detector (“what do you MEAN my belt sets it off?!”). That whole experience was incident free as well. No, folks, I am talking about the worst of all possible airport related experiences…Starbucks. Do not F**K with under-caffeinated travelers. Just do not do it.
In addition to several dirty looks and muttered obscenities, the following 3 things happened in the 5 minutes I waited patiently for my grande non-fat vanilla latte:
A woman berated a cashier for not having access to a toaster to toast her (probably several day old) bagel, as if said cashier should run out to Target and pick one up just to show she was truly dedicated to her level of customer service. When the cashier asked if she would like it heated in the microwave for a few seconds, the patron looked at her as if she’d been asked if she’d like to put her head in the microwave (probably not too far off from what the cashier was thinking).
A business traveler (so identified by his suit and the Blackberry he was yelling into), upon
taking a sip of his designer beverage, slammed it back down on the bar and said “oh come ON, I said no *bleep*ing whipped cream. How hard is it to remember NO *BLEEP*ING WHIPPED CREAM”. I hope the person on the other end of the call shares his disdain for the simple folk who serve…and whipped cream. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not fond of whipped cream either, but I’ve never felt the need to throw a public tantrum over it.
Finally, a woman, clearly bucking the natural flow of things by hurriedly crossing diagonally across the store to get to the sugar, unintentionally (I hope) used her wheely briefcase to assault the toes of the woman waiting next to me. My fellow waiter let out a surprised but quiet yelp. The tone of her yelp wasn’t irritated or confrontational, yet the offending bag-dragger turned to her and snarled, “well if you weren’t in everyone’s way…” and stormed off. Smushed Toes just looked surprised as Bag-Dragger exited then turned to me with a look that said, “who peed in her Cheerios?” I shrugged and smiled apologetically as my drink was called. As I left the ‘bucks, I overheard someone behind the counter say that they were out of mocha powder. God help them all.
So, dear SAN Terminal 2 Starbucks employees, thank you for a lovely latte. Perhaps you should go work for the TSA, you might get more respect.