Most people stay in Starbucks to relax and unwind after a stressful day in work or school. However, a student of University of the Philippines-Diliman recently found out that sometimes, unpleasant things do happen inside the said coffee shop.
Writing on her Facebook page, Charina Jimenez related how, while having coffee with long-time friends in Starbucks – Robinsons Malolos, a group of middle-aged women essentially tried to force them into leaving their seats earlier than they wished so they can occupy the seat for themselves.
Apart from invading the personal space of Jimenez and her girl friends, the middle-aged ladies also verbally harassed the group, repeatedly making side comments like “Mayayari na naman yan.” Not yet content with their actions, the ladies also placed their ordered coffees on the table occupied by Jimenez’ group.
“This coffee shop is usually used as a study place, a meeting place for professionals, a cozy spot for catch-ups, and so on. Never have we thought of it as fastfood restaurant wherein you are obliged to leave right after you have finished your coffee and consumed your cinnamon bun. No. Coffee shops just do not work that way,” she wrote.
In a succeeding post, Jimenez clarified that they’ve been in Starbucks for about half an hour. “None of us were even halfway done with our food yet when this happened,” she wrote.
“We would have gladly shared with (them) the couch that has been vacated by my friend who left earlier and have given (them) the table had they asked nicely,” she said, adding that the real issue on hand is respect and “the common courtesy of learning how to wait.”
COMMENTARY: There are two issues here that needs to be threshed out:
1) Though we observe “first come, first served” principle in restaurants and similar establishments at all times, this should not be abused. It’s okay to engage in chit chat with your meal buddies after having your meal, but to stay for more than an hour AND WITH MANY CUSTOMERS WAITING FOR SEATS is rather insensitive.
2) Nevertheless, it is very RUDE to bully customers out of their seats. For example, it’s not right to place your belongings in their table while they’re still eating. Making AUDIBLE side comments like “Ang tagal naman” is another abhorrent behavior.