Intrepid reporter Cienna Madrid arrived a fashionable 10 minutes late to a scheduled fast food walkout at a downtown Subway, only to find the picketers had already come and gone, leaving a handful of reporters outside fumbling with their smartphones, wondering what was up. Turns out, the strikers had spontaneously headed off to a nearby Starbucks to brew up some trouble there.
"Fairly organic & chaotic, productively I'd say," explained Sage Wilson of Working Washington via email. But, he admitted, "tough for media relations."
It'll be interesting to see how the media frame inconveniences like this. On the one hand, we're all kinda jaded and unimpressed by the usual staged media events (though like cattle, we herd into our pens nonetheless). On the other hand, covering a truly spontaneous event is just so damn exhausting.
In any case, Cienna trudged over to the Columbia Tower, where she caught up with about 25 picketers outside a Starbucks, singing "Strike! Strike! Strike!" to LMFAO's song "Shots." (Cienna assures me this is a real thing.)
About 25 picketers gather outside a Columbia Tower Starbucks
Inside the Starbucks, however, the scene was more serene. Cienna says she asked one woman standing in line if the strikers had any impact on her. "No," the woman replied. "I just want my latté."
Cienna didn't stick around long enough to see if the woman left a tip.
Meanwhile, national organizers now say that low-wage workers have walked out in 60 cities, including: Alameda, CA; Atlanta; Aurora, CO; Austin, TX; Ballwin, MO; Belleville, Ill; Berkeley, CA; Bloomington, Ill; Boston; Charlotte; Chicago; Columbia, MO; Dallas; Denver; Detroit; Durham; East St. Louis, Ill; Flint; Fremont, CA; Greensboro; Gretna, LA; Hartford; Hayward, CA; Houston; Indianapolis; Kansas City, MO; Lansing; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Madison, WI; Manchester, CT; Memphis; Milwaukee; Missoula, MT; Newark, CA; New Orleans; New York; Northglenn, CO; North Las Vegas; Oakland; Richmond, CA; Peoria; Phoenix; Pontiac, MI; Raleigh; Richmond, CA; San Diego; San Leandro, CA; San Lorenzo, CA.; Seattle; Springfield, Ill; St. Louis; Tacoma, WA; Tampa; Topeka, KS; Wausau, WI; West Haven, CT; and Wilmington, DE.