Doing It Wrong: Four types of pandemic patrons

We're all experiencing COVID-19 inconveniences, but that's no excuse to be rude. Working at a popular Spokane restaurant has given me an escape from my house and the ups and downs of life as a college student. While I've appreciated contact with the outside world, this contact hasn't always been pleasant. I've compiled some of my "favorite" pandemic customers into four main groups, Friends-style:

The one where the delivery driver cuts in line
Delivery drivers are always on the move. They make more money the more orders they fulfill, so of course they are. But this can come as quite an inconvenience when some drivers cut through a line of customers and interrupt someone working the register. These drivers have sometimes even interrupted me while I'm taking a customer's order to tell me which order they are picking up. Yikes.

The one where they wear their mask under their nose
I'll let you in on a little secret — and I do not want to alarm anyone — but you can actually breathe out of your mouth AND your nose. So that carbon dioxide from your lungs will indeed escape through your nostrils, too. Therefore, not covering both your mouth and nose with a mask is counterproductive. No one at the register wants to stand close to someone wearing their mask like that. Oh, and please do not use bathing suit bottoms or underwear as masks. Save it for the bedroom.

The one where they complain about the closed lobby
The summer weather has been pretty hot, so wanting refreshing AC is normal. However, restaurants are trying to follow state safety guidelines. If you, as a customer, get upset and refuse to support businesses because you cannot sit inside, this only reflects on your character. Truthfully, the loss of your sale will not be anywhere near as detrimental to a restaurant's revenue as a coronavirus outbreak.

The one where they touch my screen
Maintaining a clean space requires help from employees AND customers. There have always been a lot of fingers touching electronic screens in the restaurant I work at (especially when people prefer touching the tipping screen privately). Our new coronavirus rules require only the employees to touch these screens, while wearing gloves. When I tell a customer I need to touch the screen for them, but the customer promptly touches the screen anyway, it starts to feel increasingly harder to stay clean and efficient.

Please listen to service industry workers. We are taking these precautions for everyone, including you! ♦

Our Stories, Our Lives: Irwin Nash Photographs of Yakima Valley Migrant Labor @ Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU

Tuesdays-Saturdays. Continues through Dec. 10
  • or