Coffee and a Case of Mistaken Identity!

Coffee and a Case of Mistaken Identity!

Coffee and a Case of Mistaken Identity!

By: Glenn Williams, VP of Strategy & Alliances, Citizen Systems America


When you REALLY want a salted caramel frothy coffee drink you will often go to GREAT LENGTHS to find one of the local purveyors (located…EVERYWHERE) and make the side trip work for even your busiest day. The trick is actually GETTING the drink and crushing the yearning sensation with each delightful draw on the caffeine, caramel and cream filled straw. One day, not long ago I found the PERFECT use for my own technology. Yes, self-fulfilling in EVERY WAY! I get my technology implemented AND I actually get my coffee drink without the awkward moment where I ask the Barista, “Is that…mine?”

There I was, ordering my drink and paying CASH. I know…CASH….who does that! The delightful coffee house register clerk says, “Can I get your name?” and for me, and my endless case of the mumbles, this is where it always goes wrong. I calmly and LOUDLY project my name as clear as possible “GLENN!!!” At the EXACT moment I am nearly shouting my name, the guy mixing the potions nearby blurts some inane question and the gal gets all jumbled up. I say it again, “G-L-E-N-N”. She looks at me and says what sounds to me like. “OK, LYNN, when it’s ready you can pick it up at the end of the counter. Have a nice day”. Well, here we go again. Do I try again to correct her or do I even care? It is VERY busy and I fear the quagmire of people with similar tastes trying to take my PRECIOUS coffee drink so I GO FOR IT. “Sorry, it is GU-LENNNNN. GLENN”. With crystal clear eyes she says “OH, OK” and scribbles something on the clear plastic cup that represents my hope for caffeinated fulfillment and off I go.

The seconds turn into weeks as I watch countless cups of Jo get served to those before me. Finally I see it, a cup of caramel, sea salt, whipped cream and mocha! The young man shouts the name I have been waiting to hear, yet unfortunately what he screams is “BLAINE, sea salt mocha for BLAINE”. I stand there confused. On one hand that HAS to be mine, I have been here for 3 whole minutes (that feel like a month). Yet, surely it COULD be someone else’s delightful treat. What to do, what to do. I shyly wait. And wait and wait. I sense the salt melting and the whipped cream flattening out. Is that my drink, is it getting diluted? 30 seconds has gone by, NO BLAINE has come forward. I steel myself for the moment as I race slowly toward the drink and ask the very busy young man “Is that mine?” He looks at me and says, “Are you BLAINE?” and the situation remains unresolved. I look at then cup and darn-tooting it actually says “GLENN”! The dude just could not read the curvy writing of the author!

Now, I obviously got my drink and the mix-up is a common one. However, I cannot help but wish there was some way to help here.


There are TWO problems that I see initially and probably a few more that can be a part of ANOTHER story. Problem #1 is the initial receipt of the name, being delivered verbally and potentially be misunderstood and transcribed errantly. Problem #2 is the name on the cup (right or wrong) being deciphered and communicated to the waiting public.

I think a thermal receipt printer like the CT-S310II from Citizen printing on the MAX STICK liner-free, partially coated adhesive receipt stock (that lightly adheres to surfaces) could be very beneficial here. See, the clear thermal print cannot be misread and can only be errantly labeled at the point of sale (problem #1), NOT the point of pick up (problem #2). If we all learn to speak clearly and listen intently the last hurdle is the interpretation of the written word. And THAT is where the value priced thermal technology comes in! WIN-WIN!

No more mistaken identity, just long slurps of coffee that many of us happen to yearn for every day. A little receipt printed, adhere it to a cup and read for ownership identification and off I go! One never knows when BLAINE might be waiting for his/her coffee and I happen to mistakenly grab it!


About Citizen Systems America

Citizen Systems America is the America subsidiary of Citizen Systems Japan - the electronic products affiliate of Citizen Holding Co. Ltd., Japan, the world renowned manufacturer of fine watch timepieces. Citizen headquarters is located in the greater Los Angeles area, California. Citizen develops and markets Printers for point-of-sale, industrial solutions, barcode and label, portable and general thermal technology usage applications. Citizen products provide Thermal, solutions for packaged and OEM printer mechanisms that are used in a variety of industries including, retail, manufacturing, food service, healthcare, banking and many more.
For over four decades, Citizen products have set the standard for performance, reliability and

value in the marketplace. For more information, please visit Citizen Systems America's website at: