Go back and ask him where you can find the nearest comic book store. Or if you already go to one, tell him you’re looking for a new store. Say you remembered that he likes Marvel comics and figured he knew where the best stores are. That seems like a natural continuation of your previous conversation.
If you have time, ask him what comics he’s reading now. Ask his opinion of X-Men Origins: Wolverine or the new fantastic, oh-my-God-is-it-May-yet Iron Man 2 trailer. (Every nerd has an opinion on these topics.) Work the comic book angle, and then try to steer the conversation towards other topics. You both have an interest in comics, so it’s safe to say there is probably some other common ground (movies, video games, TV shows) to chat about.
The customer/barista relationship is an interesting one. The casual coffee shop atmosphere lends itself to camaraderie, and we often feel a certain fondness for our purveyor of caffeine. And also, there’s the tip aspect, which makes you wonder how much of their friendly banter is genuine. Though I know from my days working retail that friendly, interesting customers are always a welcome respite from the daily drudgery.
I go to a lot of coffee shops, and have made friends with plenty of baristas over the years. It can be difficult to break past that customer/barista relationship and take the friendship outside of the store. And it might not happen– he might be wary of dating or hanging out with customers for job security reasons. That said, I would suggest stopping by the shop during slow times, or towards closing, to see if you can strike up another conversation. Be friendly, but try not to take up too much of his time. (You don’t want to get him in trouble with his boss.) Let him talk to you. Hopefully he’ll remember you and be happy to see you the next time you come in.
This advice could of course be applied to any customer/clerk situation. (Quite a few of you have asked for advice on how to ask out the cute guy at the Apple store, which is apparently where all the chic geeks work these days.)
What do you guys think? Any advice for getting to know the cute guy/gal barista, bookstore clerk, etc.?