Thanks to SorryWatch’s Senior Starbucks Correspondent Ernie for sharing this one, via ABC News. (Warning: Video autoplay at the link.)
Mise-en-scène: Andrew Richardson, 20, is staffing the Starbucks drive-through window in Bishop, CA. A lady buys several beverages but is then informed that the shop is out of drink carriers. “She was a touch frustrated, like anyone would be,” Richardson recalls. She asks Richardson if he can throw out some trash she had in the car, and he says he cannot, as this is a health code violation. “She then became a bit more frustrated, but nothing that I would perceive as rudeness,” Richardson recalls. “At worst, she was playfully sassy. I really didn’t think too much of it.” Richardson notes that in customer service, one deals with entitled satanic hosebags [Note: I paraphrase] all the time, and this lady did not even place.
The next day, the lady comes by, sees Richardson, and apologizes! Amazing! They chat a bit and Richardson feels awesome because getting an apology from a customer “doesn’t happen much.” BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE. She hands him a card and walks away. In the card is $20 and a letter of apology.
Can you read it? It says:
Greetings, Starbucks barista!
Yesterday at your drive-through we had a less-than-cheerful encounter at no fault of yours. You were out of carriers and said you could not take my empty cup (trash). I was less than understanding & my manner was curt.
I need to apologize. The thought of leaving a trail of unkindness like that is so not the path I want to reflect. Not for you, not for me.
You are young man clearly working hard to build a future and you should be commended. Keep up your attitude of cheer & hope. Stay hopeful no matter what kind of people cross your path (or drive-thru). 🙂
Surely, God has good blessings in store.
You taught this ole lady something yesterday about kindness, compassion & staying humble.
I thank you! God bless you today & all your todays.
Debbie, you mensch! You set an example for us all. We all have cranky moments. Debbie’s was so minor it did not even register on its victim. But she knew she had been rude, and that’s what matters — her discomfort with the fact that she’d not been her best self. Rather than tamp that knowledge down, as most of us do, and brush off her bad feelings about her conduct, she took action. The tip was not necessary; even handing over the letter was not necessary, since she happened to find Richardson working when she stopped by. The verbal apology would have been sufficient reparation. But it isn’t often we get to spotlight an apology that goes BEYOND what is required. Enjoy! Love you, Debbie! Thank you for sharing this, Justin, so we can all see how an apology can make people feel really good, and we can all strive to emulate Debbie!
Editor’s Note (also Writer’s Note, because we are a shoestring operation): Snarly apologizes for being a careless reader/picture-looker. That is a $50! Thanks to all who pointed it out.