Company’s amazing response to angry customer blows up web, sends sales skyrocketing

Ryan ClarkAn American businessman from an American company that embodies the American spirit catapulted his bottle works business into the stratosphere with his epic, now gone viral, retort to an angry, ignorant customer.

Meet Ryan Clark, co-founder of Liberty Bottleworks in Yakima, Washington, who responded on Facebook to an unidentified Michigan woman’s complaints that no one from the company was available over the weekend to assist her, even though, according to her, “it is the holidays, you should be working.”

Keeping in line with Liberty’s promise to consumers – “Stewardship – it is not just our responsibility, it is our liberty!” – Clark simply told the woman his employees will not be available on the weekends to help her because they are home enjoying time with their families.

“Family first, product second,” Clark wrote, gently chastising:

[We] pride ourselves on doing things well, we pride ourselves on doing things right, we pride ourselves on doing things the American way.

Not instant gratification, 24 hour shopping on Thanksgiving type of American way but, family and country type of American way. The way our grandparents did things type of American way.

I am sorry you are upset and I will gladly give you your money back, but I am not sorry our employees were enjoying the holidays.

That right is not exclusive to you.

According to multiple reports, Clark’s post went viral after an employee posted it on Reddit, generating over 10,000 new Facebook “likes” since Monday and slamming the company with new orders from supportive consumers.

“You can’t give up your people for profit,” Clark told KIMA-TV. “You can’t give up your ethics, beliefs or your core principals simply for another bottle sale.”

Screenshot of Facebook post courtesy of AdWeek.comliberty-response-2013 ad week

Watch a report from KIMA here:

Watch: A cappella group’s amazing version of ‘Little Drummer Boy’ goes insanely viral

Janeen Capizola

"And though she be but little, she is fierce." And fun! This conservative-minded political junkie, mom of three, dancer and one-time NFL cheerleader holds a bachelor of arts degree in political science. [email protected] Twitter: @JaneenBPR


  • bdwatcher

    Right on! Living our beliefs and liberties, doing business according to heartfelt understandings might inconvenience those without similar beliefs, but invites everyone to understand and tolerate differences. No one is entitled to demand behavior from others for just their convenience. Deal with it.

    • Bluerabbit

      And for that reason, I would like to see businesses consider that many people have different traditions. They observe different holidays. Wouldn’t it be great if people could take their holiday time when it best fit their own cultural traditions? That would probably provide better customer service overall, since some people do not celebrate Thanksgiving and many do not celebrate Christmas. What you seem to say above is, “my heartfelt beliefs count and yours don’t, because I’m important and you aren’t, so deal with it.” I agree with the idea of considering the feelings and needs of employees. The attitude expressed in the post above considers the feelings and needs of an employer.

      • Jay

        So what your saying is, maybe have a half staff on the weekend? I think you missed the point. He doesn’t have to employ people on the weekends during the holidays. His product is good. Maybe what needs to happen is that lady needs to get her butt in gear and order what she needs when she needs it, not late. If it was that bothersome to her that she couldn’t go about daily activities, such as enjoy the holidays, then might I suggest patience and some Ritalin. Its refreshing and a miracle to see a company in this day and age think about employees before the almighty dollar.

      • Roy Linford Adams

        I DO take time off for my religious holidays. (Yule being one of them) And I work Thanksgiving and Christmas. They are just another day to me just like Hanukkah is just another day to a christian. It’s a great help to my employer having a devout Pagan working for them so they always have someone on staff to take care of customers who rely on my company’s service, a service which will easily ruin any family’s holiday if we fail to maintain. My co-workers get to enjoy their holidays with their families and I enjoy mine with mine and our customers with theirs. And while I’m at it I am also going to state that this woman is in the wrong. Whatever holiday you celebrate, demanding an employer make his employees work their holiday is just wrong.

      • ocarol500

        This is not a big box store … he doesn’t HAVE to be open except when he decides to be open. The Business sets the prerogative, not the customer. And his product is so good that the customer who wants it will wait and work within the business parameters.

      • Dee

        No business needs customers like that. However, what you state about others getting their observed holidays off…they do. I was written up twice at a previous job for refusing to work on Christmas and Easter, the holidays to observe the birth and the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, however a co-worker was allowed the entire week off for Hanukkah. Jewish holidays begin at 6pm…he could have worked during the day but oh no, he had to have the full week off but the Christians are written up for not working on their observed holidays.

        If they don’t honor Thanksgiving they’re free to use the day off any way they please. However this business knows what’s most important…happy employees. Treat your workers right and the rest will fall into place.

        As for rude pushy customers, kick them out and let someone else deal with that. You don’t need them.

    • joeblow1984

      Another example is with Chick Fil A and them being closed on Sundays. So? I can still order it the day before and eat it as left overs. I used to do that when I worked near a Chick Fil A. They pay well, and they get good benefits, and are an asset to the community, but I respect their decision not to open on Sunday. After reading this, I too would like to purchase something and support Liberty Bottleworks.
      Earth to pain in the neck customer, not all businesses are not open 24/7.

  • johninlongmont

    I would think the COO would proof his posts before he posts them 😉

    • Richard Malcolm

      OH WHO CARES about the writing – he got his point across (and this coming from a writer).
      The reality is – too many customers think they deserve royal treatment, including on the holidays. They forget one important fact of life: The people they are berating and yelling at have families; it should NEVER be all work –
      That’s just one problem with this country: We’ve lost the value of FAMILY FIRST

      • johninlongmont

        it’s nice to care for your employees, but to rant in a fb post with numerous typos makes you and your company look pretty stupid…and think about it – would you rather do business with a company that can handle your problem during a holiday or not? – I vote for the company that makes customer service a priority

        • DARPatriot

          No. It makes you look human and caring.

        • SeRiOuSLy!!??

          You didn’t use a capital letter or put a period at the end. Did you not proof your comment before you posted? Sure makes you look pretty stupid. Think about it – would you rather read comments from a “comment nazis” and be correct themselves or not? I vote that if “comment nazis” are going to go out of their way to harp on something so meaningless, they should be perfect in their own to keep from looking like a retard.

          • johninlongmont

            style is one thing, typos another

          • Joan

            Agreed. Improper style shows you cannot write properly. On the other hand a typo is a one time mistake that says very little about you. If you want to correct a person’s mistakes in a longer message at least make sure you can type one a couple words 100% correctly.

          • bassgirl48

            wrong-o, jock-o!! my style is no caps, no unnecessary punctuation, and i’m a high school english teacher. i spell correctly, and i use perfect grammar, as does johninlongmont, but people who misspell and use trash can grammar drive me nuts. these are people who forgot everything they learned in school. these are the people who look, as you said, stupid. remember ee commings? great poet! never used any caps. it’s a great style, not stupidity!!

          • Pamela K. Cahoon Laub

            Do you fancy yourself as an e.e.commings? You aren’t. You are supposed to be a teacher. I feel sorry for the future of your students if their teacher can’t be bothered with punctuation or capitalization.

          • William Mills

            That is what the
            new American education is teaching know days. It’s more about no child left
            behind (numbers graduating) not proper education. But as for this CEO he know
            has my business. Family First Business Second, not for corporate Greed we need
            more campiness here in American like this one.

          • Doug

            I love a literary reference. Well Done.

          • bassgirl48

            oh come on!! do you think i’d let my kids do this????? i know better – they don’t. and they certainly don’t know that I do this. of course, how could they? i don’t do social media with kids. and no, i don’t fancy myself an ee cummings. i was using him as an example of an unusual style. pamela, you need to get over your anger issues! LOL! did some english teacher give you a bad grade once and so now youre taking it out on me? BTW, i teach sophomore honors, so i’m not too worried about their futures!

          • Bill Stephens

            What a cant, oh and replace the vowel, it suits u.

          • dragonwych

            His was a style used in poetry. You’re just lazy, not stylish.

          • Joe_the_Troll

            Unfortunately, I teach the students you’ve mishandled when they come to college. I DO blame your ilk for them not knowing a sentence from a fragment. You’re obviously what we need fewer of – crappy, self-absorbed, incompetent teachers.

          • Asher

            Maybe you should lead by example?

          • bassgirl48

            i do, dear. i do. so tired of answering the strange posts on this thread. don’t you read?

          • Pamela K. Cahoon Laub

            I’m not angry. Your pretentions amuse me. It merely looks stupid and lazy.

          • Guest

            Not to nitpick but it’s E. E. Cummings (or e. e. cummings).

          • Bill Stephens

            You must be an amazing teacher, so full of yourself, I bet the kids just swoon over your “style”.

          • bassgirl48

            they don’t see my style. how many times do i have to repeat myself? you people can’t read.

          • dragonwych

            But you aren’t e. e. cummings, whose name you cannot even spell. The thought that you actually teach English is appalling. It’s a bad joke, right?

          • Clarisa Wheeler

            If you teach the way you write, I can only hope you aren’t teaching my kids. Perhaps it is his teachers that are to blame.

          • bassgirl48

            i’m extremely glad i don’t teach your kids!!! you have a hard time reading, and you get upset over really silly things, like how i type on social media sites. GEEZ!!!

          • Clarisa Wheeler

            Upset over really silly things… You mean like a typo?

          • Elaine Brundage

            The poet’s name is spelled e.e. cummings. And he did use capitals when it suited the form of the poem, but never in his name. As an English teacher, you are supposed to teach the students proper usage, so then, when they decide to break the rules of spelling and grammar, it’s purposeful. As you never use proper capitalization and shun punctuation, and you actually DO misspell and use poor grammar, I wonder if you are the best model for your students. English teacher does not seem like the right job for you.

          • bassgirl48

            Ah!! i’m so sorry! an ee cummings expert! wow! did you know him personally? yuk! yuk!

          • Joe_the_Troll

            Your blather is not poetry, and you are no e e cummings. You’re a hypocrite, nothing more.

          • bassgirl48

            i did not say i am ee cummings, YOU people said that. i just like his style. not crazy about his poetry. not crazy about you guys, either. nothing better to do with your time? you sound like an angry short man.

          • snickers

            Then you need to go back to school and learn to write properly. You don’t get choose a style of writing and then make it correct.

          • bassgirl48

            yes i do!

          • Mike Norman

            Any one see that the English teacher didn’t capitalize her I’s? Ladies and gentlemen I give you the U.S. school system at work.

          • bassgirl48

            anyone is one word, mike, and don’t forget that comma after gentlemen. if we really want to get technical, there are no periods after U and S, although i think the AP stylebook says its ok. (i used to teach journalism) basically, whenever you have two or more capital letters together, you don’t separate them with periods.

          • sparty1522

            I have The Associated Press Stylebook in my hands (technically, on my desk) and it says “U.S.” is acceptable in all uses, as both a noun and adjective. It’s “USA” that can stand without periods.

          • bassgirl48

            that’s what i said…AP accepts and recommends periods.

          • MannieP

            It is a vain stupidity. If you are an English teacher, you should know and use Standard English. Doing otherwise is a disservice to your students, and sets them up for failure. Get out of teaching; you are a disgrace.

          • bassgirl48

            you people don’t read too well, do you? what part of “do you think i’d let my kids do this?” don’t you understand? i have repeatedly said (and someone deleted my last post – thanks!) that in the classroom i spend a lot of time making sure my kids write and speak perfectly. i only do this on social media with adults. well, maybe not too many in this thread! i give up. you’re all morons and you can’t read.

          • Brimstone Halo

            Dost thou remindeth them of thine own inability to capitalize an I?

          • bassgirl48

            of course not. what i do privately is none of their business.

          • BGVA

            You use perfect grammar, but refuse to capitalize words at the beginning of sentences. Sounds legit.

          • Jenna Slye

            You’re a high school English teacher and you don’t know that it’s e e cummings, not commings? Stellar!

          • bassgirl48

            oops! typo!

          • bassgirl48

            by the way…i’m not the one who spelled it e.e. commings…some other lady did. it was Pamela K. Cahoon Laub i scrolled up and took a look, knowing that i surely would not have misspelled his name.

          • holoh

            You are not a high school English teacher – but you are a liar!

          • bassgirl48

            oh, i definitely am a high school English teacher. have been for 16 years.

          • holoh

            You may be employed by a high school for the purpose of teaching English, but I assure you, you are not actually a teacher by any stretch of the imagination. Having the job and doing the job are two different things. You clearly are only capable of doing the prior.

          • bassgirl48

            how in the hell do you come off telling me what i am and what i am not based on my choice of not using caps for social media? you are delightfully moronic and i hope (and truly believe) that all of your progeny is just as stupid.

          • holoh

            bigassgirl48, you sound mad. The truth hurts.

          • Doug

            What does type one a couple words 100% correctly translate to in English?

          • bassgirl48

            say again?? don’t have a clue as to what you’re trying to type there.

          • Pamela K. Cahoon Laub

            We all think you are a lazy, pretentious fool.

          • clay777

            It’s time for you to shut up now.

          • Tiffany Monkeyy Clay

            No, my friend, if you are going to berate someone’s ability to write a completely correct grammatical sentence, perhaps you should work on yours.

          • pyrodice

            In other words, you think he looks like a retard for not having a perfect post. Did you realize you were proving his point when you jumped him?

          • SeRiOuSLy!!??

            Proving his point? You obviously don’t have the ability to grasp the obvious. He had no point, he was just being a “grammar nazi.” My point was, if a person is going to go out of their way to correct somebody, they shouldn’t have any mistakes themselves. I don’t have a problem with how people type on social media, just the people who want to berate, belittle and lord over them like they’re better by correcting them. Its social media, not school, not work…so who cares or take issue, except a jerk!

          • pyrodice

            This is one of those really meta situations where proving his hypocrisy required hypocrisy of your own. Get my point NOW?

          • SeRiOuSLy!!??

            Its not..”really.” The irony of my comment wasn’t lost on me the moment I wrote it. Correcting somebody for correcting somebody…but obviously you either don’t get the point I was making or just refuse to acknowledge it because you wish to keep harping on what was obviously necessary.

          • pyrodice

            Neither of the above. False choices. “obviously necessary” doesn’t really apply to many internet arguments.

        • barchen36

          Aye and would you be willing to give up your private time with your family, to work holidays and the Christmas season for a profit? Kind of guess that you are not in that position or ever will be. It appears that you think more of making a buck than having a happy family or employee, BUT then you might be neither. Hours are stated, live with it.

          • Michael Modes

            There are many people you rely on to work holidays in the utility, travel, restaurant, hotel and healthcare industries and more. If they were not there to fly your plane, serve your food, keep your power on, and on and on, you would be enraged. Not all are essential and they all require people to work.

        • Tim Morehead

          You’re a douchebag just like Mrs. bitchy whatever her name is. And given all the new support and orders this company has received because of the COO’s typo ridden response, it appears hat you are a douchebag in the minority.

        • Phil_J

          Being nit picky only makes you look stupid, you need to grow up and get a life.

        • ngrrsn

          I have worked for big companies, small companies, and owned a retail store. I am also a grammar hawk. But, johninlongmont, I disagree with your comments. To your last sentence I would ask, first define customer, then define service. I also believe it is time for America to get a grip. The “holiday shopping insanity” needs a time-out and we need to get back to what is important, and in my opinion it sure isn’t bottles, $2.00 underwear specials, or 1/2 price-last-year movie media on a holiday! Shopping and non-urgent business can wait a couple of days.

          • Haley Dorris

            AGREED!!!! I don’t shop on holidays. I know it won’t stop stores from making their employees work, but at least it gives them one less person to deal with!

        • CelticBrewer

          John isn’t the COO or representing his brand. His lack of capitalization and punctuation isn’t a big deal. I noticed the CO’s errors, myself. I certainly appreciate the guy’s reply and ethics, but if it was me- I would have proofread.

        • Joe_the_Troll

          As a writer and an academic/instructor in composition studies, I find that it is rarely the educated and erudite who need to judge the intelligence and professionalism of others by the grammar in Facebook posts. If his company’s ads looked like this, that would be one thing, but in the context of FB, it is meaningless, and you are merely grandstanding to put yourself on a pedestal.

          • Longstride

            Joe, you have my vote. Well said, sir. Well said.

        • Jayedee Halpin Dewitt

          i vote for the company that makes their employees a priority. if you feel differently, there are plenty of walmart, mcdonalds and the like for you to support!

        • snickers

          I agree only with the fact that customer service is important, but I am sure that even you agree, that no one needs to have a staff available 24 hours 7 days a week. you are part of what is wrong with America if you believe that every company needs to cater to everyone for whatever reason they want them too.

        • Mike

          The purpose of written communication is to accurately communicate ideas. That happened. Why people like you feel the need to feel superior by correcting a clear piece of communication.

          • johninlongmont

            I don’t know where you and the others get off attributing feelings to me of which you have no knowledge…any post by a company officer is an official communication from the company…to post “this one needed addressed” or “thank you for your oder” or any of the glaring typos in that post makes you and your company look stupid

          • Mike

            No, John, it doesn’t. To go around whinging about a note not meeting your standards when it was a successful piece of writing (i.e. it communicated what the writer meant to communicate) actually makes you look stupid.

        • Francis Timbol Fabie

          Stupid? That’s funny because everyone else backed him up and even gave him more business to show support. You have got to be kidding. We can rant all we want to businesses that we know that have 24/7 customer service but we cannot demand it from businesses who do not have that. You are just selfish and the only one who looks stupid here is you, johninlongmont and, well, bassgirl48.

    • thcbuildit

      you’re a moron! The fact that the COO personally responded to this idiot of a “customer” speaks volumes about the kind of person and company this is. I would definitely do business with them!

      • johninlongmont

        why do I get the feeling all you guys voted for obummer? 😉

        • JANET BROWN

          Well I did not vote for obummer (as you call it) but I agree with the others in this post. Who cares if a FB post has some misspelled words. I am certainly going to look up this company and give them an order.

          • getoverit

            Me too!

        • Phil_J

          You sound more like an Obama voter than anyone else, “Oh look at me, I’m so special that I need your immediate attention”.

        • Courtney

          A true liberal would never defend the executive of a corporation against an entitled customer. If you don’t know enough about politics to know that, you shouldn’t vote at all.

          • Haley Dorris

            A “true liberal” does not immediately take the side against an executive simply because he is an executive. We take the side of the American working public. In this case, the CEO acted in the best interest of his employees. Liberals are out to make sure everyone gets a fair chance and are not denied their rights as human beings, not to make sure everyone gets what they want.
            No one is guaranteed instant gratification in this life; the customer is spoiled and needed to be knocked down a few pegs. This company doesn’t deal with life and death; there was no reason they had to be open over a holiday to appease her or anyone else.
            You know nothing about whom you are speaking. If you don’t know that, you shouldn’t speak at all.

          • Jarek Draven

            Very well said. Thank you.

            Conservative trolls, pay attention.

        • Margie

          I would wager you are very assumptive in many aspects of your life.

        • Taurus

          Why do I get the feeling that voting for “Obummer” is totally irrelevant to grammatical and spelling errors in this article?

          And, for that matter, that grammatical and spelling errors are totally irrelevant to the point of the article?

        • Joe_the_Troll

          LOL. Why do I get the feeling you were dumb enough to vote for PALIN?

          • Niles Aronson

            or Mittens.

        • Niles Aronson

          I am a Libertarian. I voted for Gary Johnson. I would shop at this company for thinking about employees and letting a rude customer know she can take her business elsewhere. I deal with her type everyday at my job, people who actually believe that they have a right to be given service when they demand it. I have had to tell a few customers about themselves personally, and I would not hesitate to let this woman hear it as well.

    • wa2pu

      Seriously? Grammar Nazism trumps family values? What is this country coming to!

    • Randy Lyon

      It looks like the typo police are out in full force. Focus on the article and not your perfect little world where nobody makes mistakes. This happens way to often. I am reading on a topic I am interested in and end up wading through all of this BS.

    • Jaidyn

      COO = Chief Operating Officer – maybe it’s not a typo?

    • Pamela K. Cahoon Laub

      Our eyes see what we meant to say. That is why publishers employ proof readers and editors. People who wait until the last minute to make purchases run the risk of not having them arrive when they wish them to. The owners of the company have the right to set business hours for their employees.

  • robertdavidhummel

    Thank You, Thank You for Your TRUTH, Justice and your Do Diligence In the American Way….May God Continue to Bless YOU, and THOSE Devilish Detractors…PERIOD
    “Did You READ that Osama>OBAMA<Osama?

  • Gracie Love


  • Hello Dolly

    Ahh the art of diplomacy. I hope she enjoyed the ” trip”

  • Dianna Hughey

    I worked in customer service, worked holidays when needed, weekends when needed and STILL got laid off when my job got shipped overseas. I would love to work for an American company that embodies the American spirit! Thank you Liberty Bottleworks, and Thank You Ryan Clark!

  • Donna E Turner

    God bless you!

  • Pamela Bourdeau

    Luv this guy!!!!! Shop American folks….made in the USA!

    • Doug

      I’m moving to Yakima tomorrow.

  • Barbara Mealer

    The lady who ordered this bottle, needed to have some patience and allow them the holiday weekend. The only people that should be working a holiday is your nurses and doctors in the hospitals. Everyone else should be home with their family enjoying the day with the family. Mrs. xxxx needs to realize that her consumerism is not what the holidays are about.

    • Michael Modes

      Ever go to a hotel on the holidays? Have relatives who did? How about travel? Ever buy gas? What if you break down? How about the TV you watch? How about phone companies, want to call your relatives on the holidays? Should everyone at the cable companies stay home? You use the services of thousands or millions of people who work on the holidays, and you think it’s magic or machines.

  • David William Reid

    She must be a liberal. Bunch of self delusional idiots.

    • Taurus

      Is it just me, or does this article actually have nothing to do with politics? I’m not sure where the political dichotomy becomes relevant.

      • Michael Modes

        Welcome to the tedious clods who see everything either as politics or a grammar shoot out.

      • Jarek Draven

        Some conservatives seem to enjoy making EVERY issue about “liberals” and talk about those evil “liberals” aka “libtards” every chance they get, even when there isn’t the slightest hint of partisan politics. Thus proving just how completely fucking stupid (not to mention knee-jerk reactive and biased) some conservatives actually are.

        I’d love to find out this woman is actually a conservative, just to rub it in his smug, moronic face.

        Truth is, she could be either. There are morons and assholes on BOTH sides of the fence. But when you’re one of the morons, that’s much harder to recognize, or admit.

    • Jarek Draven

      Keen insight there, sherlock. Bet your IQ is stellar.

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