I’ve been visiting the same Coffee Bean every day for the last year. Each morning I saunter to the counter and get a large iced coffee with one sugar, one Splenda. By now, they don’t even ask what I want, they just start ringing up my order when they see me walking in. 2 of the employees are always chipper and sweet and greet me with a smile. 1 of them however…he clearly hates his job.
His name is Tom. He’s about 6’5″. He has long black hair that he stuffs under a cap, but little flyways always manage to sneak out by his ears. He has beautiful green eyes. He acknowledges my presence by muttering “g’morning” at a barely audible level.
I’ve tried winning him over with numerous tactics:
1) Being overly enthusiastic. “Yeah I’d LOVE an iced coffee!” I think he could sense my desperation.
2) Being mellow yet very polite. “Thank you, I really appreciate it,” I purred in a tone as smooth as their dark roast. He looked perplexed.
3) Acting like I just don’t care, which means grabbing my coffee as I casually shrug, trying to look super nonchalant. I don’t think he even noticed.
4) Trying to start a conversation. “How’s your morning thus far?” “Aight,” he quietly replied as he walked away.
I want to know what he does on the weekends. I want to know what kind of music he listens to. What kind of car he drives. How much pizza he eats. How much pot he likes to smoke.
My next tactic is to start cracking jokes. If that doesn’t work, I’m planning to buy him a present.
C’mon, Tom, let’s leave this apathetic, caffeine-based, awkward-morning-interaction-dance behind us and start anew with a fresh cup of java tomorrow and top it off with a smile. I’ll even settle for a grimace at this point.