As a newly minted old person, I now find myself enjoying several of the tried and true old person pastimes: going to bed early, not drinking too much, taking it as a compliment every time I get ID’ed. And now, one coffee company is allowing the younger generation to experience the thrill of old person flattery. Costa Coffee, the world’s second-largest cafe chain, has enacted a policy that allows employees to ID teenagers, and deny them sales if they don't meet a minimum age requirement.
According to Grub Street, the company’s new policy allows “stores to refuse drinks to anyone under the age of 16.” A Costa spokesperson tells the Manchester Evening News that they do “not encourage the sale of caffeine to children,” which apparently makes the next logical step to allow baristas to “interrogate customers they suspect are too young.”
Grub Street notes that while the policy has been in place since the end of summer and stores are given discretion on when to implement it, the new rule has drawn more attention lately after a 12-year-old was denied a coffee.
Some of you might think this sounds like a great idea—the hepped-up early teens of this world have enough to be excited about, what with their apps and their Post Malone fandom. But in my opinion, this is a dumb rule. Should you maybe keep a pre-teen from ordering their 10th orange mocha Frappuccino? In an ideal world where everyone looks out for one another, probably. But that ain’t this world. You’re not that kid’s parent. Let ‘em enjoy their caffeinated sugar rush. Why is a 12-year-old alone in a coffee shop anyway? Shouldn’t they have a guardian? What are they even looking at on that phone they stare at all day long? And if they don’t and they are out there in the real world taking care of themselves, then they damn well deserve a coffee or how many ever they decide to order and are able to pay for. I don’t need some visor-wearing barista playing caramel police.
So smooth move, Costa, you just created an open invitation for everyone under the age of 16 to come camp in your stores, not buy a damn thing, and waste your wifi downloading the latest posthumous release by Lil Peep or somesuch similar artist. This all could have been avoided by simply giving a child caffeine. It's your loss.
Top image via Superbad.