I feel like I’ve spent considerably more time that I have ever wanted to (read: none) writing about customers not liking hip hop in cafes. After putting pen to pad for multiple stories about two Joe Van Gogh baristas being fired from the Duke University location over a song that offended one particular member in line—as well as the subsequent withdrawal of JVG from the Duke campus—I figured that would be the end of it. But here we are again.

On a recent afternoon in Portland, Oregon, a customer came into the brand new (and very beautiful) Either/Or cafe of N. Williams to find some 4:00pm-ish hip hop playing on the stereo. They were not fond of it. But instead of firing anyone, Either/Or has swung in the opposite direction: 4:00pm is now hip hop hour.

According to a screenshot of a comment left on a Square receipt by “Christopher” (as the post calls him), the problem was not that the music was offensive, just that he doesn’t like it: “the problem with hiphop [sic] (or whatever this stuff was at 4pmish [sic]) is that if you don’t like it, it’s like repetitive, stupid noise.” Because of this, Christopher is unlikely to return.

In honor of Christopher’s considered commentary, the ownership at Either/Or has decided to make the four o’clock hour of each weekday “Hip Hop Hour.” From their Facebook post:

Sometimes exposure to new music, and ideas for that matter, can ruffle ones feathers but these are the joys we can all experience on this journey we call human life. Something that often helps us when we encounter an idea, taste, or sound that is unfamiliar to us is to educate ourselves about the subject at hand. We at Either/Or wanted to help you on your journey so we did a bit of research about Hip Hop as a musical form with a rich historical context.

Either / Or also included links to articles explaining the cultural significance of the art form. Read the full response below.

*We value your feedback, see our response below and feel free to comment with any hip hop album requests you’d like to…

Posted by Either/Or on Monday, May 28, 2018

Zac Cadwalader is the news editor at Sprudge Media Network and a staff writer based in Dallas. Read more Zac Cadwalader on Sprudge.

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