Barista Ops Part 1: Ellen

Oh, Ellen. She is now the brunt of many jokes with my work friends, but in the moment she was terrifying. 

Let me set her vibe for you. She's probably in her 60s, bottle-blonde, always wore a mask and gloves (incorrectly), and had an extremely loud New York-ish accent. Sounds like this bitch: 

The first time I met her, I just thought she was quirky. Maybe she was socially awkward, I don't know. She comes up to the counter and she wants a large hot decaf coffee, heavy emphasis on the decaf. Even though she watches you get coffee from the pot that is clearly labeled 'decaf', she asks about 10 more times "just in case". Then she wants you to put that one cup in a 4-cup carrying tray, fill an espresso cup with cream and put that in there, and top it off with a handful of Splenda--but it has to be from behind the bar (opposed to the condiment stand--more on that later). 

She always took a really long time, usually creating a line, scream-talked, and tipped a dollar. Usually she'd hang out and tell us that we were so nice, and everywhere else was so mean to her. We were like weird, but ok. 

She started coming in more frequently, but she got increasingly demanding and belligerent. We realized she was a problem and not just quirky one Sunday. *Harp noises of a memory...* I was in my office, as per usual on a Sunday. I come out of my office to this jerk off woman extremely pissed off because she asked for the calorie count on a muffin, the staff was checking the nutrition binder, and she thought it took too long. In reality, she definitely just got embarrassed and lashed out, but she's too feeble-minded to understand this on her own. She sits me down for twenty minutes (I checked the cameras afterward) to tell me the story five times. Including the fact that she had bought things 3 separate times (showed me the receipts) and that she demands a $25 gift card. 

I literally laughed at her and said, "Yeah, I don't think we can do that". She made sure that she told me several times that she doesn't need the money--that her brother is a successful lawyer--and she went to a private girl's school. I'm like, okay??? So after that situation, I dreaded her coming in. She would do the same thing, and find something to flip out about.

Another tidbit; she was really into one of my coworkers because apparently she knew her from another job. On another busy Sunday, she decided to flip out on the person at the register for "touching her cup"... Let that sink in. Touching the cup. Not the inside of the cup, the cup itself. Did the same spiel. She asked for cream and Splenda, we told her (like we do to everyone) that we have a self-serve bar. She lost it

She went straight to the aforementioned coworker and started screaming. "YOU NEED TO GET A HOLD OF THESE PEOPLE. I DON'T WANT SPLENDA THAT EVERYBODY ELSE HAS TOUCHED." She starts to come behind the bar and I tell her to back up. She demands someone cleans her table--keep in mind this whole time we're in a rush--I tell the employee no. She gets even louder. I give my coworker the keys to my office and tell her to go in there until Ellen leaves. Ellen literally follows her around and my coworkers is like "you need to give me space," telling her to stop and she won't. 

We call the police and right as they show up, she abandons everything and leaves. We haven't seen her since. 

A few of our regulars work in the area and said they know her and has done the same thing, cops were called and everything. However--she returned to one of the pizza places a few months later and tried to act like everything was fine. I really hope that doesn't happen but I'll kick her out! 


Pissed-Off Barista 

Back to blog