Georgia State student workers recall their weirdest encounters

Many college students have a job to help pay for books, groceries or simply to have a source of income for personal expenses. In 2017, 43% of full-time college students were employed.

For Georgia State students, job options are plentiful, ranging from campus jobs to the many restaurants and stores located near the Downtown campus.

However, living in the city can be quite weird. Part of the fun in going to school in a major city is never knowing what one is expecting to see on the streets of Atlanta.

Working a job that is uniquely situated between a large university and a major city is an experience many cannot say they have had. 

Some students work the closing shift, and in Atlanta, when the sun goes down, the characters come out.

Kateleen Garcia, a second-year student at Georgia State, works at Smoothie King on Broad Street. She usually works a three to nine shift in accordance with her class schedule. Garcia recalls some odd encounters she has had since she started working there in January 2019.

“One dude came in with a cage — like, a dog cage — and he had a vacuum in it, and he was just carrying it around,” Garcia said. “One time, this dude walked in and asked me for a threesome.”

Many times, these unorthodox requests naturally catch employees off guard. Customers can include prominent businessmen, professors and maybe a local rapper or two.

Ana Rodriguez is a second-year student at Georgia State and a former employee for Saxby’s, a coffee shop located in Library North.

“Once, a lady asked for the tuna salad on a cinnamon raisin bagel,” Rodriguez said.

Saxby’s is not as accessible to people who do not go to Georgia State unlike other restaurants near campus, as one must use a biometric scanner or their PantherCard to enter the library. Since their customers are mostly students, workers keep a poker face when their peers have some unique orders.

A student worker taking a bizarre order for a fellow student in their Accounting II class can be quite awkward.

Campus coffee shops are not open as late as neighboring restaurants, so the time of night is not responsible for these offbeat demands. Yet odd customer requests are still prevalent, nonetheless.

“There was this guy that used to come during my shift a couple of times a week that would ask for steamed milk and hand me a container with what I assumed was protein powder,” Rodriguez said. “When he was done, he’d get back in line and ask us to fill that same cup with boiling water and one single ice cube.”

There is no shame in this game, though. Most employees have heard it all and are not fazed by uncanny requests as that is part of the job.

It is Atlanta, after all. All workers only have one simple expectation of customers regardless of their orders.

“Just don’t be a jerk,” Garcia said.