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Home / More Lifestyle / Barista receives over $32,000 in tips for not serving ‘Karen’ without a face mask

Barista receives over $32,000 in tips for not serving ‘Karen’ without a face mask

Lenin Gutierrez, working as a Starbucks barista in San Diego, gathered praise and a whopping USD 32,000 in tips when the woman, Amber Lynn Gilles posted about him on Facebook with an aim to criticise him for not serving coffee because she was not wearing a mask.

more-lifestyle Updated: Jun 27, 2020 13:36 IST
hindustantimes.com | Edited by Saumya Sharma
hindustantimes.com | Edited by Saumya Sharma
Hindustan Times, Delhi
San Diego County issued a notice on May 1 requiring residents to wear face-covering in most public settings, including when shopping in a store or picking up food at a restaurant. (Representational Image)
San Diego County issued a notice on May 1 requiring residents to wear face-covering in most public settings, including when shopping in a store or picking up food at a restaurant. (Representational Image)(Unsplash)

A barista who declined to serve a woman, who has been nicknamed ‘San Diego Karen’ because she was not wearing a mask, received praise from Internet users and whopping USD 32,000 in tips.

Lenin Gutierrez, working as a Starbucks barista in San Diego, gathered praise and $ 32,000 in tips when the woman, Amber Lynn Gilles, posted about him on Facebook with an aim to criticise him for not serving coffee because she was not wearing a mask.

“Meet Lenin from Starbucks who refused to serve me cause I’m not wearing a mask. Next time I will wait for cops and bring a medical exemption,” she posted.

The post backfired. Many Facebook users defended Guiterrez and chided Gilles. It got over 1,00,000 reactions and comments and 50,000 shares.

One Facebook user wrote: “There’s no reason to publicly shame a kid who’s trying to work his shift like any other day.” Another said: “I don’t blame the kid behind the counter. They need to follow the rules that they are given.”

In another post, Gilles said she wasn’t “scarred or bothered” and thanked everyone for “the ratings” with a peace sign. One of the top comments on this post reads, “You do realize the only one who is benefiting from these “so called ratings,” is Lenen!! He has almost 10,000 dollars in tips!!! 👏🏼”

Another top comment reads, “What is most troubling about this whole thing is that you do not have the ability to understand why your actions and words are so terribly, horribly wrong. You are showing people a level of selfishness and pettiness that is beyond the pale. You are raising children to believe that this entitled behavior is not only okay, but expected. That young man is following the rules his company has laid out. For you to put him on blast is shameful. Go somewhere to get your coffee where you are not required to wear a mask. Put other people in danger somewhere else. It’s not about YOU getting sick, it’s about keeping EVERYONE ELSE from getting sick. This will all come around to you some day. I only hope you learn from it when it does. Your children have my sympathies. This comes off almost as if you are seeking attention and publicity which is even sadder.”

San Diego County issued a notice on May 1 requiring residents to wear face-covering in most public settings, including when shopping in a store or picking up food at a restaurant.

Many people expressed their desire to tip Guiterrez.

That’s when Matt Cowan, a man who does not know Guiterrez but stumbled upon the post, decide to start a virtual tip jar on GoFundMe.

Cowan called the donation page “Tips for Lenin Standing Up To A San Diego Karen.” In the description, he wrote, “Raising money for Lenin for his honourable effort standing his ground when faced with a Karen in the wild.”

In three days, the total amount is more than USD32,000, and it continues to increase by the hour.

“Everybody is rallying around somebody for doing what they’re supposed to do and trying to protect everyone else,” Cowan said in an interview with KGTV. “It just goes to show you there are a lot of good people out there and that outweighs the bad.”

On Facebook, Gutierrez said he already has big plans for his unexpected tips.Gutierrez, who is an aspiring dancer, said he plans to use the money to fuel his passion, and to teach others the art of dance.

“With this donation that everyone provided me on GoFundMe, I can make these dreams a reality,” he said. “From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much.”

-- with inputs from ANI

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