As Seven Days' online editor, I'm the person responsible for moderating the comments people leave on various 7D-related websites. The majority of this comment moderation happens on 7 Nights, our dining and nightlife site.
There are more than 700 Vermont restaurants and bars listed on 7 Nights, and users can rate and comment on them all, which generates a pretty steady stream of material for me to review.
We don't edit comments, but there are rare occasions when we delete them, either because they're off-topic, or violate our commenting policy. Sometimes we get comments from disgruntled restaurant employees or competitors who want to settle the score. I weed those out as best I can.
And every now and then, we get a comment that deserves a wider audience. I read one this morning that I thought was worth sharing. It's about Muddy Waters, the cozy hippie coffeehouse on Main Street in Burlington. For the record, I love Muddy's. And so, apparently, does this 7 Nights user, whose screenname is "BTVORBUST." I think that comes across in this comment:
Muddy's is unquestionably still my go-to source for all mycaffeine-related needs in Burlington. However, this evening I had tobite my tongue and stifle my anger and frustration at a very irritatingand annoying encounter with the counter server. Usually I get myMuddy's fix around mid-day on my way in to work, but tonight I foundmyself absolutely craving a "Muddy Shake" (their impossibly richmilkshake made with just espresso and vanilla ice cream) on my way homefrom work around 10 PM, well ahead of their closing time of 11PM. (Ilive 80 miles from Burlington, a 1 hour 45 minute drive, so I wasreeeeeeeeeeally looking forward to nursing a Muddy Shake on my longlate night commute home!) But the server told me I couldn't have myMuddy Shake because they arbitrarily "stop making them at 9:00" and wasfed some line about how "it takes forever to clean all the equipment"used in the making of the shakes. I protested politely, and got a rollof the eyes, a deep sigh, and a very sullen "I'm not supposed to getthe equipment dirty after it's been cleaned and put away. I'd be hereall night cleaning." Really? Seriously? A blender? Does it really takeforever to clean a blender? ... If it's on your menu board, and you're openfor business, and I'm willing to pay $5 for a Muddy Shake... is therereally, seriously, a GOOD reason why I can't have my Muddy Shake? Comeon, folks. Customer wants Muddy Shake. Customer is standing there witha $5-spot in hand. Doors are open for business. Make customer his darnMuddy Shake! Period!
I typically refrain from commenting on comments, but this time I can't resist. First of all, dude, an 80-mile commute? What are you thinking? No wonder you're so bent out of shape about your shake. Can you just not find a job where you live? Can you not afford to move to Chittenden County? Or do you really want to live that far away? How can you even afford a Muddy Shake given all the money you must be spending on gas?
Secondly, I want to implore the powers-that-be at Muddy's to find this guy and give him a free shake, to compensate for his frustration.
And finally, as the moderator of this online conversation, I suggest a compromise. Why not develop a take-out arrangement? If BTVORBUST calls ahead, Muddy's can make a shake for him in advance, and he can come by and pick it up on his way out of town. This isn't just about customer satisfaction, folks, this is a public safety issue. He needs that espresso shake to stay awake on his long drive home. I personally don't want to be on the road with this dude that late at night when he hasn't had his caffeine.
Muddy's? BTVORBUST? Can you work this out?