Frequently Asked Questions 21

Customer Complaints

(Angry woman over the phone) Why is my pineapple cut into the shape of a penis?
Is it too big or too small?

Hey, why didn’t I get a pineapple penis?
We don’t always have time to make them.

What the fuck is this?
Yam penis.

What the fuck is this?
Chicken feet.


You can purchase pineapple penises from our Doordash (delivery service) menu.


How should I answer the question “Hi, how are you?”
Owner usually ignores the question, but according to social critic Paul Fussell (who also hates the “how are you” question), that’s rude.  So we’ve come up with a few responses:

  • I’m a recovering narcissist so I’m not allowed to talk about myself anymore
  • I don’t know
  • Why do you want to know?
  • I don’t like sharing my feelings to strangers
  • None of your business

or tell them how you feel.

  • My butt hurts!
  • Angry, I want to kill someone
  • Horny, can we fuck?
  • Cranky, I want to throw this at someone.
  • Tired, I want to sleep until I’m dead

How the  batshit crazy answer stupid questions.


Is it true that I can order an original poem for $5 on Doordash?
Sometimes, and it comes with a gift.  Check Doordash menu to see if it’s available.

Are the poems any good?

Any samples?
Here’s an excerpt from a twenty-line poem:

Do I love you?
Would you know if I do?
What does love taste like?
A taste familiar,
yet refreshingly new

Not good but hopefully it’s entertaining and makes someone’s day better.

What happened to the avocado salad?
Replaced with a beet salad. The beets are cooked and then poached in a vinegar, pineapple, garlic, and ginger mixture. For now, they’re paired with beans and pickled cucumber.  It’ll evolve.

What’s in these jars?
Fire cider: ginger, garlic, jalapeno, orange peel, and vinegar.  $5.


Is it true that you offer free SAT tutoring and resume writing service?

Where would it take place?
In our dance studio.

Um, what sort of crazy resume will he teach my kid to write?
One that guarantees that he’ll get call backs.  One that looks like this: Boy Wants Job to Get Laid Resume

I sincerely want to know how owner is doing.  Can I get an answer?
Between 4am-2pm, he’s angry and happy (workout high).  From 2-5, he’s angry and tired = cranky.  (That’s why he’s usually on break during those hours).  From 5-10pm, he’s angry and happy (yoga high).  Now stop asking him this question.

Wait, how can someone be angry and  happy at the same time?
Example: football players coming out of the gate are happy and angry at the same time. Anger + happy = focused and high pain tolerance. Now stop having feelings about feelings because that’s why you’re batshit crazy.



Nine Years Old

Thanks to everyone who helped us make it to nine years.  We’re now the third oldest juice bar in Seattle metro area.

We’ve evolved from a place that makes eating veggies convenient and normal to a place that welcomes those who aren’t supposed to like veggies. Lately, we’ve been exploring how culture triggers our addictions to sugar and other drugs, legal and illegal. Our aim is to create an Alive Juice Bar where people can feel free enough from cultural constraints to examine societal norms as potential sources of our angst.  It’s a place where we turn mainstream culture upside down just to see, as if a laboratory, what happens.  What happens, for instance, when we encourage people to be assertive instead of polite?  Kind instead of nice? Frank instead of euphemistic?  What if we stop telling people we’re “fine” all the time and say instead that we’re in a lot of pain and are ok with it? What if we tell people it’s okay to feel anger and sadness, and to embrace such emotions to fight through the pain, just as a championship football player and a world class ballerina do? Would such an embrace bring us closer to the Dionysian spirit Nietzsche writes about?

Transform Beethoven’s ‘Hymn to Joy’ into a painting; let your imagination conceive the multitudes bowing to the dust, awestruck- then you will approach the Dionysian. (The Birth of Tragedy)

The Dionysian spirit finds strength and rejoices, not despite, but because of one’s own suffering, similar to how a brutally sacked quarterback gets back up to throw a game winning touchdown.  People are suffering not because of their suffering, but because they’re uncomfortable with their and other people’s suffering. The source of the obesity and opioid epidemic is our fear of pain, even though pain is what makes life worth living.

Nietzsche predicted that a stifling mass culture would emerge from democratic capitalism. This culture, he warned, will subvert our instincts — that Dionysian spirit — to live nobly.  And we’ll instead become slaves to envy and vanity, greed and sloth, and afraid of emotions such as anger and sadness. Watch out for that because the emotionally motivated pursuit of excellence, not freedom from pain and anger, is what affirms life and makes it worth living. We want to be the place where people can cultivate their pursuit of excellence by relieving themselves of the burden of trying to fit in with mass culture.  We want to be a place of mischief.


Next Move
We have a year left on our lease.  Since complex anchor 24 Hour Fitness is moving, we’ll also be moving to be closer to where they’re moving, We’re looking at spaces now, including a high ceilinged space next to Juicy Yoga. We’ll likely bring the dance studio with us and will design it as a flexible space so it can double as a restaurant (Redneck Bistro) three nights a week. Let’s see what happens.

There’s a lot of work to do.  Let’s do it, and let’s be troublesome about it.   Agape.


How to Run a Juice Bar (Owner’s Manual Series)


Don’t try to beat the competition by making the best product.
Instead, pick a price point and make the best product for that price point.  If you ask me which juice bar has the best salads, I’ll pick Heartbeet Cafe.  But I don’t try to make a salad similar to theirs because theirs costs $15, while mine costs $6. My customers show up 3-5 times a week, theirs show up once or twice a month.

The process is the business.
Amateurs think about recipes, professionals care about processes. Focus on process, not recipes. When a process breaks down, everything goes to shit. Create processes that minimize mistakes and speed up delivery time.  Remove anyone, including customers, who repeatedly fucks up the process. Letting a process break down is much deadlier to a business than pissing off a few customers.

Base recipes on process
Recipes should be based on, for instance, how long you want people to wait for something, never on what makes it seem fancy to customers. Complicated recipes means longer wait time and more mistakes so keep it simple.  Less is more and less tastes the best.

Choose ingredients based on infrastructure and price stability
Again, restaurants don’t begin with recipes.  They begin with your ability to work with the space and utilities infrastructure to develop recipes unique to your situation.  Ingredients you choose to use should be based on the context you’re working in: from the price stability and hardiness of an ingredient to the equipment you have.  Use ingredients in as many recipes as possible so you can purchase them at a volume discount and hedge against low sales of certain items.  For instance, we use beets in multiple drinks, a salad, and as chips.  That allows us to buy beets at a much lower price point than if we only used it in a salad.  The Nasty Shit smoothie is possible not because it sells well — it doesn’t, its purpose on the menu is to brand us as serious about veggies – but because its ingredients are used in our best selling drinks.

Choose your customers
Customers don’t choose you, you choose them. This will make you more pro-active in getting to know your customers — their fears and dreams — and make work more enjoyable.  When you host a party at your home, would you prefer to choose whom to invite or do you let random people in?  Costco doesn’t let everyone in. The best night clubs let few people in.

We chose the “Redneck Juice Bar” brand because juice bars, like yoga studios, are gendered feminine and men were refusing to come in. So we masculinized the juice bar so much so that 50 percent of our customers are now men, especially working class men.  And many of them are drinking kale smoothies and eating their veggies, they tip well, are respectful, they’re just fun to serve and be around.  To get their business, we had to piss off a lot of pompous and condescending customers, customers you and your employees shouldn’t have to deal with anyway.

Mindset of a Bad Cook (Alive Juice Bar Owner’s Manual)

Mindset matters. Its what feeds the bad habits others have written about it.

Bad cooks:

* assume everyone likes what they like.
* take it personally when someone doesn’t like what they like
* feel happy when complimented on their cooking
* take it personally when someone doesn’t like what they make
* don’t consider context
* don’t think about what the eater is experiencing
* have high self-esteem

The above explained.

Bad cooks assume everyone likes what they like.
Because they’re narcissists. It’s never occurred to them that other people are not just_like_them, that other people may not want to be treated the way they want to be treated. So they don’t make an effort to get to know other people as individuals with their own palates and preferences. Watching them cook is like watching a guy stick his dick up some woman’s ass without ever asking her if she’d like that because he assumes every woman likes anal.

Not everyone likes cheesecake.  Not everyone likes kimchi.  Not everyone likes bacon.  Some people like broccoli.  Some people like raw oysters. Some people like it up the ass.  Some people don’t like it up the ass.  Bad cooks are like shitty lovers, they’re not observant and curious enough — they rarely ask questions — to ever pay attention to their partner’s unique preferences.


Just because he likes it up the ass doesn’t mean everyone does, ok?

There are only two drinks on my menu that I enjoy and drink daily: the Attitude Cleanse and The Nasty Shit, both of which 99% of people won’t like. The drinks I don’t drink, they’re for customers who have different palate preferences from mine. If I only serve what I like, my business would fail. So know your audience and then figure out how far you’d go to satisfy them. You don’t have to take it up the ass if you don’t want to.  (I’ve seen juice bars resort to selling alcohol and ice cream to satisfy customers). And don’t try to satisfy everyone.  If you do, it means you have no integrity.  Stand for something.

This is a stupid life rule. Narcissists live by this rule because they think that what they want is what everyone else wants or should want.


Bad cooks take it personally when someone doesn’t like what they like. 
“How can you NOT like __________!!!!?????” asks the bad cook. And then he goes on and on and on about how much and why he likes it until he’s made it clear to everyone that he’s superior to anyone who doesn’t like what he likes.

Snobbery doesn’t work if the goal is to get someone to like something they don’t like.  Snobbery is about inflating the ego at another person’s expense.

Bad cooks feel happy when complimented on their cooking
Which isn’t the same as feeling happy when someone is enjoying food. Bad cooks waste their emotions on stupid shit like praise and cook to feed their ego instead of their customers. Put simply, bad cooks are addicted to compliments. Which means they lack integrity, they’ll do whatever it takes to get as many compliments as their addiction needs. If there’s no purpose to the food other than to win compliments, then sell candy instead of kale because a lot more people want the former than the latter.

And in any case, happiness (or is this contentment?) shouldn’t be contingent on external events because you can’t control what happens around you and trying to do so is usually futile.  True happiness comes from within, from that faith in oneself to handle any situation with aplomb. Bad cooks are who they are because they’re an emotional mess, they lose it when an oven stops working or Gordon Ramsey calls them a “dickface” or a car crashes into their kitchen (which happened to our neighbor, who handled it with humor and nonchalance).

Bad cooks take it personally when someone doesn’t like what they make
Bad cooks attach their ego to every dish they make. They think working this way makes them “passionate” when in fact it makes them too emotionally needy to ever take risks that make cooking fun in itself. That’s why bad cooks stick with popular recipes for popular dishes because it’s too risky to invent a dish someone may not like.

Bad cooks don’t consider context
Bad cooks are so focused on what they want that they’re unable to work with what’s available and to cook from multiple perspectives. This limits their repertoire and ability to improvise when something isn’t available.  It would never occur to a bad cook. for instance, to cook a meal on the engine of a running car (roadtrip cuisine!); to use a lemon instead of a lime to cut cost; to substitute this for that when that isn’t available; to work with the seasons.

Bad cooks don’t think about what the eater is experiencing as they eat
Inexperienced employees often ask what size this apple or that cucumber should be.  Never tell or show them the answer.  Ask them instead what size the customer wants it to be.  What does a woman want to look like while she’s eating a salad in public?  Does she want to open her mouth as if a porn star getting ready to swallow some Zulu sized dick or does she want to look dainty?  Would customers prefer their bento meals to look half full or almost too full when they open it? How should a salad be arranged to maximize its appeal to customers? How many colors and what type of shapes and textures should be on a plate?

Bad cooks have high self-esteem
They think so highly of themselves that they can’t imagine themselves making silly mistakes, like forgetting to put ice in a smoothie.  So they never implement checks — eg. feeling temperature of cup after pouring smoothie in it — into their workflow processes, if they even have one.

This hot dog also tastes like shit.

So What Makes a Good Cook?
Good cooks are primarily focused on what their customers want, not what they themselves want.  And then they work to strike a compromise between what the customer wants and what they themselves want and are willing to make.  What else?  Good cooks — their mindset –:

  • keep their egos out of their work
  • know that they’ll make mistakes
  • assume everyone  has unique preferences

Good cooks keep their egos out of their work
This makes them more objective when assessing their work.  This also allows them to not be hurt if someone doesn’t like what they make.  Which in turn frees them to experiment any way they want because they don’t care about rejection.

Good cooks know that they’ll make mistakes.
That’s why they check their work and invite colleagues and customers to check their work.

Good cooks assume everyone has unique preferences
This encourages them to ask customer questions about their preferences and priorities before telling them what they should get. Good cooks respect each person’s individuality.


General guidelines on how to run Alive Juice Bar and more cooking tips coming soon.