The coffeehouse continues growing and the spring winds blow in fresh faces. You should be outside! But we understand the appeal (and necessity) of having a space like ours to work from. We would like to post these common sense rules concerning those working from our, at times, crowded space. Thanks for remembering that we are a small business functioning also as a community space, serving a varied group of individuals. We try our best to keep our space welcoming and comfortable to all.
(Found these rules on the mightygirl.com site)
1. Remember you’re frequenting a business. If the coffee shop isn’t profitable, it closes, leaving you pantsless in front of a Top Chef
marathon. You, my friend, are a customer — so rise to the challenge.
While you’re working, keep a purchase in front of you, and buy something
every hour or so. If you can’t afford that, the library beckons.
2. Don’t bring a picnic. This should go without
saying, but you may not bring food or drink to a place that sells things
to eat and drink. Not even if you bought a coffee at some point. You
can leave and come back if you want, but go eat your PBJ somewhere else.
3. Hang up. The barista is not a vending machine. Put away your cell phone while you’re ordering.
4. Tip well. Tip at least a buck every time you
make a purchase. This promotes goodwill and serves as karmic rent. It’s
an acknowledgement that you’re using space someone else could fill.
Someone who tips.
5. Clean up after yourself. If you spill half the
creamer on the counter before you find your cup, wipe it up. Empty sugar
packets go in the trash, which is conveniently located inches from your
hand. Bus your table between purchases and clear the table before you
go. If someone takes your empty glass while you’re still sitting, that’s
a forceful hint that it’s time to buy something else or leave.
6. Let the baristas be. If they want to talk to
you, they will, and a pleasant conversation may ensue. But if you feel
chatty — or god forbid flirtatious — direct those impulses elsewhere.
Employees can’t be rude in the face of your attentions, and they can’t
exactly leave work to avoid you.
7. Take one chair, and the smallest table available.
If that happens to be a large table, offer to share until someone
accepts. Don’t wait for others to ask, and don’t cover the table surface
with papers in hopes that no one will bother you. As soon as a smaller
table opens up, move.
8. Leave chairs free. If the space is busy, your
bag goes on the floor, not a nearby chair. That way other people can use
the chair without interrupting you. If you’d like someone to clear a
laptop bag so you can sit, say, “Excuse me, is someone sitting here?”
9. Don’t bogart bandwidth. No P2P or large file downloads while everyone is sharing a network. Besides, we can all see your porn, and it’s awkward.
10. Respect the owner’s intent. If wi-fi is turned
off at certain hours, then your laptop probably isn’t welcome either. Be
aware of the cafe’s culture. If everyone around you is reading
newspapers, or having quiet chats, this isn’t the place to start coding.
11. Avoid noise pollution. Switch your cell to
vibrate, and take calls outside. If that’s not possible, keep
conversations brief and quiet. Also, mute the sound on your computer, or
wear headphones. Do you have any idea how much time you’re spending on
12. Recognize that everyone wants the outlet seat.
Unless outlets are plentiful, don’t use one unless you must. Arrive with
a charged machine, and consider bringing an extra battery to avoid the
whole drama. If you’re sitting at an outlet and you have enough battery
to work for an hour or so, offer to share.
13. Don’t tamper with outlets. If an outlet is
covered with a plate or tape, are you seriously willing to be the guy
who opens it up? Don’t be that guy. What’s more, if there’s a fan, a
lamp, or any other electrical device plugged in, you may not unplug it
in order to charge your machine.
14. Ask before you pull out a power strip. In some
cases it’s fine to bring along a power strip to multiply outlets, in
other cases it irritates the owner. It’s more likely to be a good idea
at a Starbucks than a mom-and-pop cafe. Another good sign is if the
coffee shop has several available outlets, and is clearly set up for
laptop use. When in doubt, ask the owner.
15. Once in a while, change your scenery. If you
plan to spend an entire nine-to-five workweek in the same space, you
might as well get a real job. Perhaps you’d be interested in learning to
make a good latte?