What’s with this?

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    This morning I was enjoying a cup of java at a popular local coffee shop. A young woman came in, laptop under her arm, and found an empty table. She began looking around, apparently for an electrical outlet, but there was not one right there. For some reason she looked up high, and right at ceiling level there was an outlet. She climbed up onto a chair, but couldn’t reach it. So she stood up on the table—in a restaurant! After she plugged in her computer, she climbed back down again and walked to the counter to order her drink. As she passed by me I politely said that I didn’t think it was cool to stand on a table that people eat off. Her response was an airy “Oh, sorry.”

    I know that tables in coffee shops do not get wiped off in between customers, so as I was leaving I described what had happened to the employee at the counter and suggested she wipe down the table after that young woman left (presumably she would be climbing up there again to unplug the computer later on). The employee thanked me and said she would.

    Sometimes I can only marvel over self-indulgent people who don’t stop to consider the impact of their behavior upon others.

    Anyhow, was I being a busybody?



    it’s funny that you write that. there is one coffee shop that i go into where i am always tripping over computer plugs. i think it’s something the coffee shops should take into consideration if they offer wifi. there should be outlets nearer to the actual tables and not in corners, high up etc. standing on the table does take the cake though!



    I’ll admit I’m not like most other people so your story doesn’t bother me. I don’t put my food right on the table before I consume it so it’s not like I would ingest whatever was on the bottom of her shoes.

    I’m a big believer that we need germs and dirt in our life to keep our immune systems healthy.

    But I know my sister would take your experience and never go in that coffee shop again.



    JimmyG – I recently heard an interview on the radio that concurs with your theory. Bascially the scientist was saying that kids who are allowed to play in the dirt have healthier immune systems and have a lower incident rate for asthma as well as other serious ailments.


    All true about immune systems but come ON – standing on a table ANYWHERE is bad behavior and good for you lbd for saying something!



    ok, so dirt is good for our immune systems. i’m ok with that.. i garden.

    but i don’t think standing on tables in a coffee shop to plug in your computer is a good thing. i happen to know how easy it is to fall off chairs and tables when you are reaching over your head and although i might be ok with her footprints on the table i don’t think i would be ok with her in my lap or worse when she fell.

    not to mention not wanting to be looking up her skirt or worse if i happened to be sitting next to her.

    beyond that…

    if there isn’t an easily accessible plug nearby, it is a good bet that you are expected to use your battery while availing yourself of the coffee shop’s free wifi.

    I too am tired of those whose lack of consideration places powercords where i end up tripping over them.



    Velvet –

    Does that include the weathered, seagull-pooped, tables at the beach?


    Erik – Depends on the seagulls you keep company with.



    How about this for a novel idea,take the outlets out so people might talk to each other,you remember,conversation:)



    cruiser…I like conversation…and I sometimes feel that it’s becoming a lost art…no wonder there are other threads on here about Seattle Freeze….



    I usually go to coffee shops to meet folks and talk, with or without a computer. But, my computer battery lasts about 4 hours and I’m never gonna be in a coffee shop for 4 hours on a computer. I just wonder if these folks actually plan on spending 4 hours there. Why would you need to plug the battery-powered laptop in? That’s sort of squatting, isn’t it? Is that more or less rude than standing on a table? Also, if there’s a preponderance of laptop types (Bauhaus CapHill, Ladro WestSea – both noon to evening rush) I usually hang at another local favorite. Coffee shops have a rhythm. What we still don’t have in WS is a good hot south-of-the-border cocoa shop combined with a good south-of-the-border chickory coffee shop (maybe a combo package of Aztec and Cajun – some great music and design choices here…)



    I tend to drink my coffee out of a cup and put my food on a plate (sometimes a bowl — depends on the food). I rarely eat directly off a table. So feel free to stick whatever part of your body you’d like on tables I’m eating at. Just don’t step in my coffee cup or place your behind on my plate and I’m cool.



    Charles, my husband spends considerable time in coffee shops with his laptop. He works from home, and for a change of scenery he goes to a different coffee shop a few times a week. I wouldn’t say he’s “squatting” because he is buying things throughout the time there – it’s not like he buys a small drink and nurses it for 4 hours – he’s buying food, drink, refills throughout that time. There are also places like Skylark which has wifi, and he’s buying a full lunch there. His laptop doesn’t have the greatest battery (no control over that – it’s company issue and they think it’s just fine) so he gets only about 2 hours out of it and requires a plug. I do have to say, however, that he definitely wouldn’t stand on a table to plug in his laptop. :)



    perhaps coffee shops and sandwich shops with free wifi should investigate creating a wifi area with accessible plugs for those who need them. I am sure customers like sue’s husband would appreciate them.

    That might free up some area for customers who might actually like to interact to sit close enough to one another to have conversation.

    And i second the request for more non-coffee choices in coffee houses. Mexican chocolate sounds wonderful to me.. tho not so sure about the chicory…



    I’d never go to a coffee shop to use their free wi-fi…stop being cheap and pay for that service at home! I went to Alki Bakery two Sundays ago around noon for lunch and it was packed. My very tired, pregnant sister couldn’t find a table, yet there’s some guy on his lap top with no food or drink in sight, hogging a table. Um, go to a real coffee shop, not a restaurant/bakery at lunch time on a very nice weekend day to do that. As for standing on a table to plug in a laptop, that’s gross. At least have the decency to wipe it down, given that people put their food and drink on that surface. People need to be more considerate.



    The only reasonable excuse for doing that is if she was really hot and had a short skirt on or something to that effect, otherwise that’s pretty stupid.



    Being a germaphobe, I think it’s disgusting.

    Almost as bad as people coughing without covering their mouths (ok, what’s with THAT?)



    flipjack… i know it’s probably a gender thing or maybe an age thing, but i really am not in favor of flash from either gender with my coffee, or in my case, tea. might be better with alcohol… might not. depends on the body:)




    True..maybe some serious beer goggles, but yeah I’d have to agree with that. :)



    If I HAD to stand on a table in a restaurant, I would take off my shoes, and then lay a napkin or two on the table to stand on. But I can’t imagine standing on a table in a restaurant. Dancing, yes.



    i like that. can we find a coffee shop where we can dance on tables? that sounds like great fun to me. i remember once doing that while someone else must have been looking at me through beer goggles… what a memory;-) good thing i was too drunk at the time to remember it clearly. Ah.. the excesses of youth:)



    Hey, I just had a client ask me about tables you CAN dance on. I was flipping thru my fixture supply books this morning…ha.

    germs are icky.

    BTW- good for you littlebrowndog, I am amazed by clueless-rudeness people too.



    I almost couldn’t believe my eyes. I was just on my way home driving south on California past the Thriftway when I noticed a man standing on the sidewalk in front of the entrance to the store relieving himself! There are any number of businesses within a few feet that have public restrooms – including the Thriftway.

    I think more than anything I was startled to witness this. I guess when you gotta go, you gotta go.. :0



    maybe he’s canadian? when i was in eastern canada last, i saw that happen more than once.



    This is directed to the geniuses that think using WiFi is “squatting”:

    Q: Why to you think coffee shops offer free Internet? A: So that patrons sit there for hours and consume their coffee and pastries. Anotherwards, to make $$$. It isn’t squatting at all unless you do not purchase anything.

    As for moi, I work from coffee shops all over WS and will admittedly not patron a coffee shop that does not have ample outlets. I wish there were more shops with tables that cater to those of us that like to hook up (those long tables that 6-7 people can sit at). And, I NEVER use Wi-Fi when I’m there. Instead I use the EVDO service from Sprint.

    Oh, yeah. Standing on the table is pretty dumb, but I would rather watch the lasy fall than say something.

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