9am- I’m awakened by Juicy J’s soothing voice as he croons “GET UP BITCH, GET UP BITCH, GET UP BITCH, GET UP!” Ahh, another beautiful day. I stumble into the shower and stare at the spout for the next 15 minutes, trying to balance my need to stay warm with my need to eat breakfast.
10am- I finish my shower, only to find out that those “15” minutes were more like 25, leaving me with only an hour and a half to eat breakfast and watch COPS. I shovel down my breakfast, ( 3 slices of buttered toast, half an apple, and a glass of OJ, if you were wondering) and began to watch COPS.
11am- 35 blissful minutes of eating and watching dumb people get arrested. At 11:35, I begin my trek to work.
12pm- I step into my Dunkin’ to find that everyone in my tiny farm town wants to get a sandwich. The person who opened has been here since 4am, so they’re not really in the mood to help, and they quickly exit the building. After dealing with the crowd, who somehow forget their manners after waiting all of 3 minutes to order, I tackle the 20 minutes of work I have to do that day. Coffee count: 1 cup
1pm- Downtime. At this point, I’ve pretty much done all I need to do. I sit back, crank some music, and wait for either customers to come in, or a good idea to pop into my head. Coffee count: 3 cups.
2pm- I wander about the store, looking for things to do, and clean up after the animal that decided to leave a pizza box (and 2 slices of pizza) on top of the toilet, with sauce and cheese splattered all over the floor. Great. Coffee count: Still 3 cups
3pm- A large group of landscapers come in, spending 15 minutes deciding what they want to get asking me if we sell burgers and beer. After ordering 4 different drinks, 5 sandwiches, and enough hash browns to feed a small horse, they leave. No tip. Coffee count: 3 cups, working on 4.
4pm- On Twitter now, I’ve been obsessed with reading all of the thirsty dudes who comment thirsty dude things on famous women’s posts. God Bless the lowly social media manager who has to read all these. A geriatric gentleman comes up to the counter and orders his coffee, small black decaf. After confirming 4 times that his coffee was indeed decaf, the gentleman takes a sip. “That’s not decaf, MAKE IT AGAIN!” So much for the Greatest Generation. After making his coffee again, the exact same way, he takes a sip, looks satisfied, and walks out. A 8 year old kid comes over and asks for a blueberry coolatta, which doesn’t exist, but the kid is super polite, so I do my best to accommodate. After combining blue raspberry and bluberry coffee into a coolatta, I hand the kid his beverage. He takes a sip, gives a huge smile and puts a 5 in my tip jar. I’m sure his parents are wondering where that 5 went. Thanks, kid. Coffee count: 4 cups.
5pm- This is usually when the characters start to come out. The first one I get is a 6’5, wildly tattood man who smells strongly of weed and cheap cigars. He orders his coffee in Spanish, a language I don’t speak. After informing him of my ignorance, he repeats his order, only louder. This does not help. After pointing to every item on the menu, I decipher his order, and send him on his way. Coffee count: 5 cups.
6pm- By this point in my shift, my customer service energy is all but depleted, and my interactions with customers begin to sour. After shooing off some freeloaders who want to try every flavor of coffee without buying any, I start to prepare my store for closing. After counting the donuts, preparing the cold brew for tomorrow (and screaming into the walk-in for a moment), one of my regulars steps in. He’s all of 5’2, grey hair pulled back into floor-length dreadlocks, and he is my favorite part of my day. After regaling me with stories from the 1950’s, he orders his coffee, medium dark roast with blueberry and raspberry flavoring. He sits quietly for a time, sipping his coffee in silence, before exclaiming, as he always does, “This is the best cup of coffee I’ve ever had!” Before he leaves, he beckons me closer and slips me a 24oz craft beer: his usual tip. Coffee count: 5 cups.
7pm- This is game time, I’ve got 45 minutes to do something that usually takes 2 people an hour. I heat myself up a croissant, which must send the Bat Signal out to everyone in a 5 mile radius, because by the time I take my first warm, delicious bite, my store is filled with people. One person, a short Chinese woman who has no grasp on the English language, and takes me on a veritable Wheel of Fortune round to figure out her order. After completing the bonus round, I return to my croissant, which has become hard and cold. Shit. At 7:55, after locking the doors to the store, I begin to count my drawer and do my deposits. Suddenly, I hear a women’s voice pierce the air. What the fuck? How did she get in? I go up to the counter and ask her what she needs, and she starts off on a rant about how the last time she was here, 5 years ago, the store closed at 9. After directing her to the sign with the store hours on it, she veers away and starts going off about how I’m lazy and incompetent, and how she’s gonna have me fired. Oooookay lady, you do that, I’m going home. Coffee count: 6 cups.
8pm- I speed away from Dunkin’ like I’m Jesse Pinkman at the end of Breaking Bad. In 20 hours, I’ll be back to do it all over again.