What a heavy month full of overwhelming feelings and forced pauses. We have been struck by a Tyson punch of instant knockout proportions. Our cafes- nay, our second homes instantly became virus parlours and the fundamentals of all we know and love of industry and of hospitality were violently and instantly upended. We’re scrambling for hope, scrambling to keep our heads above water, and scrambling to find ways to lend ourselves to our communities in new, unique ways. Cafe patrons are being forced to brew better coffee at home, and an industry is banding together in any way possible to continue to push money into an already fragile supply chain.
It’s truly of the most beautiful displays to be seen. Community reaching out their hands to cushion the perpetual free fall through purgatory that we’re all nosediving through. The manifestation of a relationship ‘working both ways’ before our eyes. The outpouring of love, support and efforts to lend help where ever possible that I’ve seen flood my instagram have brought tears to my eyes more times over the past three weeks than I can count. In a time so filled with utter uncertainty, the community has truly shown the industry how vital, important and cared for that industry workers are to their neighbourhoods.
The question has arose, however- do we just go back to business as usual as an industry when the dust settles, and continue to push ourselves past healthy points while accepting a blatant lack of respect for how important we are to the average persons daily life? I think we owe it to ourselves to take this unfortunate opportunity to reassess what service means to us and how we can take back ownership of an industry. I’ve long believed the concepts of ‘the customer’s always right’ to be dated and without warrant. Everyone should be heard, but giving people a chance to become an instant tyrant because they’ve been preconditioned to believe that services workers are somehow LESS human or worthy than the general working human is a recipe for low wages, poor treatment, questionable hours, impending addiction and mental health issue acceleration and, well, realistically for things to go back to business as ‘usual’ when the dust settles. Let’s show ourselves a little bit more respect. Let’s demand worlds more. We’ve finally found a place of power and a place where we have been shown with a little bit more of a positive, proud light- let’s take this momentum and change our industry for the better. It takes a village.
I’ve got some cool projects coming down the pipeline including some hella fun merch to attempt to balance the fact that until/outside Mr. Trudeau’s intervention, there’s a dire need to supplement my income and keep my family fed. Cold Brew deliveries are coming. Soon. I promise. It’s just been a real treat wrapping my head around all of this, but I’m here and I’d love to chat over a Zoom call and a nice, fresh cup of coffee. I look forward to the day when we can nerd out over the bar again. For now, though- Stay inside, call the people you love, embrace each moment of this forced pause, be present for yourself, love yourself. We’ll get through this, and we’ll be so much stronger as an industry because of it.
All of my love, support and admiration,
PS: if anyone is interested, I’ve set up a virtual tip jar for those who aren’t looking for more STUFF, but would like to support efforts to stay afloat both in shop and at home. Just click below and know that your support means way more than any special nanolot I have or ever will yelp over.