Guest Post

The People You Meet In Coffee Shops

Meet my newest guest blogger Vrbridge from Habits of Thinking! Vrbridge is an excellent writer and an avid runner. Enjoy her post, and be sure to visit her blog!

The people you meet in coffee shops:

As a former employee of a coffee establishment, I have seen a variety of people come and go.  What I will address today are the top ten people that EVERY coffee shop will have entering their establishment.  They are quirky, and even if it’s not right away, employees will embrace their eccentricities with a smile.

  1. The “regular”– This person comes in every day, rain or shine, at the same time of day and asks for the same drink.  They get excited when the barista has their drink already ready for them, and they usually stand at the bar and talk with the barista.  This person is usually low maintenance.
  2. The guy who refuses to use the coffee “lingo”-This person finds enjoyment out of refusing to conform.  They will make up words just so they don’t use the “cutsie” names for the drinks that the coffee shop uses.
  3. The impatient guy-This person will be upset if they wait for their drink.  This person is usually a “regular” at another shop, and will expect ESP to occur from one store to another so we know their drink order.  They usually tap a limb in frustration that it took the barista 30 seconds to make their drink.  If there is a long line, it is a guarantee they will be upset.
  4. The free stuff guy– Unfortunately there is always the person that doesn’t want to pay for much, and will continually try take advantage of the “it’s on us” policy.
  5. The “health” nut-This person will order a “healthy” drink, but then put whipped cream on it.  Unfortunately, this cancels out anything healthy about the original drink
  6. The ACTUAL health nut-This person genuinely wants to have the healthiest drink possible, and will go as far as watching the barista make the drink to ensure nothing “unnecessary” or “fattening” goes in to the drink.  The person will require to see any food labels of any baked goods.
  7. The cool guy– This person wants to impress everyone with their “fonzie-like” exterior.  He wants everyone to think that they are the person who knows everything about the coffee served at the establishment.  They will order a pretentiously “cool” drink, and will sit in the café for hours on end having conversations with customers about how much they think they know about coffee.  Afterward, they will leave their trash on the table because they assume the establishment will bus their table, despite the abnormally large sign stating that they don’t.
  8. The student-This type of person falls under two categories: college and grade school.  The college student always looks frazzled.  Typically, they’ve stated up way too late doing some “studying” (yeah, ok), and desperately need some caffeine to stay awake to actually study for a test or finish a paper that’s due in a few hours.  The grade school student is someone from the nearby school who is using their lunch money to get a sugary drink so they can look cool in front of their peers.
  9. The old employee-This person used to work for a coffee shop.  They order their drink and silently judge how long it takes to get the drink (because they used to do it SO much faster) and again, silently judge how the coffee tastes differently than how they used to make it. I’m not proud of this, but I have fallen in this category myself a few times.  But hey, I was awesome at making coffee (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it).
  10. The Casanova-This person uses the coffee shop as a place to meet their next significant other or evening partner.  When it’s particularly slow, they will attempt to flirt with the baristas.  Unfortunately, this person is not a good flirter to begin with, and tends to upset people.

So there you have it, folks!  People you are guaranteed to find in a coffee shop!  I hope you enjoyed my (hopefully) funny and enjoyable reminiscence on my old barista days.

More from Vrbridge:

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114 thoughts on “The People You Meet In Coffee Shops

  1. Well, what can we say ?? Sounds like retail customers everywhere. Want to change that top ten ? Have topless barista serving days or free coffee to topless customer days ! 🙂

  2. I am quite glad that I don’t regularly buy coffee from coffee shops, I wonder what category I would fall under, the nearest one would be #2 but I normally (when I do go to coffee shops) ask for a latte and that is always up there so I do use the lingo.

  3. Vrbridge,
    Hilarious work! I love the fact you tailored your piece to fit Miss Four Eyes’ unique style and rhythm.
    Feel free to guest post for me anytime!
    The Hook.

  4. Pingback: Blogging for Another Today! | Habits of Thinking

  5. Interesting article and true I think. I have spent a lot of time in coffee shops over the last year writing and working, and I have seen all of these people. I do not know where I fit in. 😦 Although I do believe myself to be Fonzie like, I mean who wouldn’t want to be that. Thank you MFE for sharing this wonderful work, another awesome blogger to follow. MFE is a magnet for awesomeness. I do have a habit of thinking so this should be a natural for me. My post yesterday was about thought. 🙂 What a crazy world.

    • Eep! You called me a magnet for awesomeness! Thank you, Jon! Big hugs!
      I always thought I was a magnet for disasters. Never have I been around a glass of water that didn’t tip over. 😛
      You would be the Happy Guy. He sits around being happy and making everyone he meets happy!

  6. Hmmm! I am #1A — awesome regular! I know their names and they know mine. I give them high ratings on surveys and they give me wonderful drinks. It’s a marriage made in heaven!

  7. I am a “small cup” person. You go to the counter and they ask you what size do you want? medium or Large?? I always say “small please” We don’t do small – medium or large? So I always ask, how can you have medium if you don’t have small? medium is halfway between small and large. So you do small or large. They won’t have it. So I repeat the point until their unengadged minds eventualy see my point.

    I never get a small cup, instead I get a medium size fire bucket full of coffee with no room for milk.

  8. I’m number 2, whatever happened to small, medium and large. Tall, Grande and Venti? Tall is large to me, Grande is also large and Venti is 20 which is more than 10 and that’s large.
    Nice post

    • This is why I order a regular. I don’t know how big a regular is, but every coffee shop has a regular size. The difference between any of the other sizes escapes me 😛

  9. Haha, great post. I frequented enough Cafes to recognize a good number of these characters. I guess I’m somewhere between the Cool Guy and Casanova, yeah pretty awesome lol >.<

    I don't like the Impatient customer, anyone who is rude or impatient with baristas or waitresses is an instant idiot in my book!

    Thanks for sharing, and thanks to MFE for having you over 🙂


      • Yup I’m the guy flirting awkwardly with everyone…

        Ah, there’s justification for it. People shouldn’t be judged by how they treat those they want something from, they should be judged by how they treat waitresses/waiters and baristas!

        Heck yeah, she’s a great find 🙂


  10. You forgot the solitary writer in the corner who uses the cafe to be around people because it’s the closest thing to a social life that person has all day.

  11. Ha! I’m not a coffee drinker, but sometimes ill be a good girlfriend and pick one up for my boyfriend (or I’ll succumb to a hot chocolate craving.) I think we need to add “the perpetually uncomfortable outsider that doesn’t know how to order and makes everyone else in line angry.”

  12. Thank you for the supportive comments! I loved all of our customers when I worked in the coffee business. Every character brought a new story each day :-).

  13. I definitely the “regular” at the local Starbucks. They know me by name and since I’m the only one who ever gets drip coffee (this is Korea) they sometimes just start the machine when they see me.
    Just curious: do you live in California. My cousin lives in California and he always has such interesting stories about the weird people he sees in coffee shops. Here, it’s usually groups of women or couples on dates, ignoring each other to play with their phones.

    • That is so sweet. I love when the store knows exactly who you are and what you’ll need.
      I’ll have to ask Vrbridge if she’s from California, they do have some crazy stories 🙂

  14. Being a former coffee bar owner, I am remembering faces for each number!!! And yes, I too sometimes am #9….:)

  15. I’m the one who won’t use the coffee lingo. It’s not a tall, it’s a small cup. I’m just going to call it a small, mmmkay? I also identify with the former employee one. I used to work at a public library. Now when I go back, I want to grab the scanner from their hands because yes I can do it way faster and better so let’s just give it here and I’ll be on my way, kthanxbai.

    Come to think of it, you see some of those coffee drinkers at libraries too – and most libraries now have coffee shops because God forbid someone read without a drink! 😀 Great post. And yes, very funny.

  16. Great work vrbridge! My favorite is #5 the “health” nut. I saw this happen just the other day and I was like, “who are you kidding?” Apparently themselves. It’s like the mom at my daughter’s daycare who, day after day, stands inside pontificating to all who will listen about organic eating and her all-natural home life while her car idles outside, pouring toxic fumes into the air. Just makes me shake my head.

    • I always get the “oh honey” look on my face when dealing with that type of person, especially if it’s a topic I know a lot about (such as the calorie/fat content of each drink). Healthy living requires a lot of change that people don’t even think about. I’m sure we’ve all been there!

  17. I frequent a coffee shop (well café really) and I met someone in there. When I left primary school (1978) I lost contact with a friend. Apparently I told my mother that I was going to marry this girl. I hadn’t told her though. Then over the years, I kept going past her house on the bus and every time contemplated knocking on her door to find out if she still lived there. Last year, I was in this café, and this woman says to me “are you Alastair? It’s me .. Sally”. She’s the girl I lost contact with in 1978. She recognised me 34 years later

  18. I am the 2 and 3. Impatient because I want my caffeine and I want it right then and no 3 because I can never understand the types of coffee they sell. I am the black coffee one milk kind of girl:)))

  19. Two friends of mine used to work at a Burger King and a McDonalds. All the customers they described pretty much fit the above list. Especially ‘the health nut’, you know: the extremely obese person that orders 3 large menu’s with an XXL cola >>> LIGHT <<< on the side.

  20. I used to frequent coffee shops a lot back in the day. I wonder which guy I was then.

    I miss going into coffee shops and meeting and talking with random people. Those talks seemed so much better than what I get as regular conversations now. I can’t remember the last time I had a really good chat with someone.


  21. I’m not a regular coffee shop person anymore, as I don’t drink coffee regularly (now, I save it for once or twice a month and am happy to say, I actually get really high from caffeine now).

    I still frequent coffee shops for a non coffee person. Why?

    They are MAGICAL playgrounds for random acts of kindness. I walk through my local drive through coffee stand and pay for someone’s drink behind me. I leave love notes, with small cash prizes scattered about. Or, if there were homeless people outside, I would surprise them with lattes… Grocery stores are good for this too…but I think coffee shops are the BEST place to spread love.

    Your post very much reminded me of a coffee shop I frequented in Santa Monica. All of the descriptions you listed could have been spotted easily during my morning people watching. 🙂

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