Sometimes I feel a bit like a bartender. I seem to have the sort of face that people just want to confess things to, or unload their problems upon. It doesn’t help that I’m a super friendly person. Often I’ll be making one drink or another at my coffee shop, call out the person’s name as I’m finishing it up and ask how they are doing. You would have think that I learned my lesson when one woman broke out into tears about all the money she lost moving to the USA and about her pending bankruptcy. But… no. I continue to ask, and I continue to hear lots of stories about depressing events in people’s lives. I also get lots of blank stares; I understand that some people cannot function before imbibing their caffeine. Sometimes its just a grunt of acknowledgement. Other times I get the cheerful, “I’m wonderful, thanks for asking!”
But that’s not why I’m writing this. I’m writing this because my friendliness makes Albert want me to get a desk job. Why? Because, along with my smile and friendly disposition, some see potential dating and or sex. And for some reason, everyone at my store makes fun of me for it. Mostly my manager, but he was rather intimately involved in two episodes.
The first phone number I got took me by surprise. After a very brief conversation, which actually only involved what type of coffee he wanted followed with my standard closing, “Alright, I’ll have that up for you in just a minute! Have a good one.” But apparently, in that encounter he saw the hopes of some sort of future for us. He smiled as he walked off- I returned it, because I’m not a grumpy asshole who doesn’t understand why people smile. So I mind my own business, and all of a sudden I see the guy behind the counter with a slip of paper that he tosses on the counter. “Just wanted to give you that.” “Ok awesome!”, I replied before I knew what the hell it was. “See ya later.” Then I unfolded the paper.
“So call me maybe?” It said. With numbers. I turned bright fucking red and I could hear my co workers laughing their asses off behind me. I had no idea how to respond. I immediately texted my boyfriend and I swear it seemed like I had hardly finished the sentence before I get his reply:
“And you did what….”
Nothing. I didn’t know what to do. Should I text him? Call him? I knew he came into the store frequently, like most of our customers, so I knew I’d be seeing him again. I got off work some time later and texted him. “Hey, thanks for the number- but I’m in a relationship. I just wanted to let you know. Hope to see you back at the store another time.”
It was a while before I got his reply. “Ugh, of course, the good ones are always taken!” I didn’t know what to say to that- “lol” wouldn’t be appropriate because I don’t want to laugh at someone elses misfortune. But if you have the balls to give someone your number like that, you at least deserve a response. I told Albert later that I texted him. “I see” is all he said back. And because I love to antagonize my boyfriend, I then said, “…and we got together to fuck, and it was great. We really need to try the lube that we used.” He ignored me.
It was probably two months later that the next thing happened. My store unfortunately has a drive through, which is the bane of my entire existence, because most people are complete assholes at a drive through. Sorry guys, but you completely forget how to act when speaking to a box. The truth. Anyway, I walk past the window and say, “Hey, hows it going?”… I didn’t even stop for a reply, I was just being friendly because I like tips. I got about my own business and hear over the headset, “Oh no… Andy…” I turn around just in time to see my manager, a huge smile on his face, handing out a piece of paper and pen to the guy in the car. “Fuck”. I turn bright red again. You can only imagine how they teased me the rest of the day.
Just this last week I was working the morning shift with my boss when one of his best friends comes in with her kids; They were cute, so I said so, and gave the little girl a high five. A half hour later my boss comes up with his phone and shows me a text from this lady.
“OMG Who was the hot guy with glasses!”
And then I knew why she had two kids with a third on the way. My boss couldn’t stop laughing, and I couldn’t stop from turning an even darker shade of red.
I got one more the other day, and I’m now really conscious when I smile and look at people. I’m not trying to lead you on, I’m just doing my job. Because I could be one of those snide, snotty baristas that everyone complains about… but then you’d complain about it. I’d wear a ring, but you know how gay men are, that just seems to turn them on even more.
So, this is why Albert wants me to get a desk job. He routinely checks Orlando missed connections for mentions of a bearded barista with glasses and a cute smile… unfortunately for him most baristas have dark frame glasses and beards. Untill he feels safe that I’m not going to run off with some customer (… there is this guy with a wicked sweet Bently that comes through the drive through…) he is a fairly constant presence in our store, looking over his computer at every guy that approaches the counter.
And, as I think about it- if I were single, be assured that this would NEVER happen.