Black like your heart
Explosive weather. Explosive times. Explosive head cold. It’s been two years since I was laid up with anything. This week it’s a head cold. My favourite morning brew tasted like a big mug of hot liquid nothingness. I can take a lot of crap—but don’t mess with my coffee taste buds. So now I’m grumpy and stuffed-up and I feel like I haven’t had a cup of Joe yet. This year was supposed to be so much better than last year. So far, not quite.
On top of the head cold and the bombastic weather, we have now been confronted by a couple of semi local, business owners who think a living wage shouldn’t be “a thing”. As a matter of fact, I’m fairly certain the owners of the coffee chain in Cobourg don’t even give the notion of “living wage” a moment’s thought. It’s obvious to me that Ron and Jeri Joyce don’t think of their staff as people. Living, breathing humans who have bills to pay and mouths to feed. It’s easy enough to do, I suppose, if you happen to be conducting your business affairs from the swimup bar of your condo in the sunny south. A place they wouldn’t have had without the support of good staff. What the H E double dipped donuts is wrong with Ron and Jeri Joyce. Did they wake up before all three of those Christmas ghosts had a chance to sort them out, you know, before the commercial break featuring their products. It’s been known to happen. Some people never learn. Jeri and Ron probably had a whale of a time during the holidays while their staff worked right through the festive season just to have enough money to keep their lights on. Many of their staff probably worked double shifts to make up for having Christmas day off. Indeed, the Joyces probably made sure those people weren’t paid for the statutory holiday by some evil means of scheduling and complex planning. Personally, I believe business owners have a moral obligation to not only do well, but to do right. I believe it is morally wrong to wring as much as possible from your staff while giving them as little as possible and then making it impossible for them to take a stand for a fair exchange of value.
And then? Well, you knew there was going to be an “and then”. And then, in the face of the shenanigans of business owners like Ron and Jeri Joyce of Cobourg we have customers, like you and I, suggesting a boycott of Tim Horton’s Coffee Shops, for one day. My knee-jerk response was, “Yay! Let’s show those Joyce jerks who the real bosses are.” But, how does this help the people who are on the frontline? A one-day drop in sales will affect the owners’ bottom line, a little bit, but it doesn’t do the TH staff one bit of good. Vindictive, heartless people, like the Joyces, will probably lay all of the blame, for both the minimum wage increase and the microscopic dip in their sales sheet, at the feet of their beleaguered staff. And it wouldn’t surprise me one Timbit worth if they got back at their staff by cutting hours, splitting shifts or seeking ways to replace those “horrible” people who just wanted to be treated with a bit of respect.
Ron Jr. and Jeri, you’ve hurt our double double feelings. We don’t like our coffee served cold, like your hearts and your indifference for your staff. Put on your big kid toques and rollup- that-rim and let your employees have a small win.