There was a change in his tone that made her cautious. She knew something was about to do down but she had to do her job and enforce the health and safety guidelines. They had to wear a face mask.
She threaded carefully, but being careful wasn’t enough to cool the boiling temper of this angry little man.
Being a waitress is tough, low pay, cranky customers, the lingering smell of food on your clothes and hair. Well, now throw the new covid restrictions into the mix.
It’s a job that would put even the most patient of people to the test. People like Julia Hamm, who had been a waitress at an iHop in Tuscan, Arizona for years.
Hamm was well aware of the tension that rose when some people were asked to wear a mask. She knew everyone was entitled to their opinion but she also knew masks helped.
Luckily however, she had never stumbled across a customer that gave her a hard time like this man gave this woman. And frankly, she found it hard to believe such animosity existed, until she witnessed it herself.
He was shouting from the top of his lungs, pointing his finger at her as she stood still. What was she to do? Was he really being serious?
Hamm wore her mask all day long. It started off as a nuisance but she got used to it. She follow the health and safety measures flawlessly and she thought others would too. She was wrong.
He and his family entered the restaurant and waited for the hostess to show them to their seat.
As customers waited, they were advised to wear masks until their food was served and they needed to eat. But this family wasn’t wearing masks. Hamm didn’t think much of it at first, this always happened.
Hamm listened as the hostess asked them to please abide by the rules and put on their face mask to protect themselves and the staff and everyone else dining at the restaurant.
When he replied, a dish fell in the kitchen and she couldn’t hear his response. But judging from the reaction of the hostess, she knew something upset her. She was about to learn what.
Hamm made her way to their table. Seeing that they had yet to put on their face masks, she reinstated what the hostess had told them.
She asked them all to wear a mask. The little boy spoke back and that’s when Hamm told him he should put on a mask too. Unknowing to Hamm, she had just crossed a line. A very dangerous line.
Realizing the change in the father’s tone, she quickly apologized, explaining that she didn’t mean to cause any offense. But she stood firm on her request that they wear a face mask.
She was walking on eggshells around him. But even her careful words were not enough to protect her from the sheer abuse this man was about to throw her way.
He slammed his hand down at the table and began to yell a stream of curse words at her, and call her every name under the sun. “Shut…up! Get…out of my face!”, he shouted. “You were…rude to my son, you said he needs a…mask!”.
Hamm’s jaw dropped as she got berated in front of the entire restaurant. But it wasn’t over yet.
As Hamm tried to get him to calm down, he repeatedly told her to shut her mouth. Hamm decided to swallow her pride and quickly take their order so she could leave and let her manager know what was happening.
There was no way he was going to get away with this. And others agreed.
By the time their appetizer and main arrived, he had it in for her. “Doesn’t the appetizer come before the food, not with your food?” he asks. “I’m just saying. I know you ain’t getting paid 50 bucks an hour, but goddamn it’s not always about the money.”
The tension was rising again, fast. Then the manager finally stepped in.
In front of the other diners and his family, he began to shout absolute profanity when he realized the manager wasn’t on his side. He shouts again at Hamm.
That’s when the manager had enough and demanded he stop talking to her coworker like that. As the other diners looked on, she asked them to leave immediately.
The restaurant gave him boxes for their food and told them to take the food with them. The whole encounter was filmed by the restaurant onlookers and posted to social media.
Then social media worked its magic and identified the verbal abuser as Adam Veronica Heurta. He is now being dubbed as a male karen.
Hamm was not much affected in the aftermath of the dramatic encounter. However, the same can’t be said for Heurta. With a carwash business on the line, Heurta was quick to address the incident.
He posted a video on his facebook page where he apologized to the public and all affected negatively by his actions that day.
However, Huerta claimed that the video was taken out of context and did not portray him accurately. “I’m not gonna sit here and say I’m perfect, but I am definitely not the person this video is making me out to be,” he said.
Huarta then suggested that no customers stood up for the waitress because they, too, received poor service. A suggestion that’s conveniently hard to confirm!