Let’s first address any confusion that might stem from the title and/or existence of this article. This is not an installment of Shit That Needs to Stop, as I have already addressed the most egregious missteps possible at a Starbucks in a previous post.
No, this is the second installment of the award-winning series Excerpts from Suburbia, and it focuses on the quirks and foibles of, and anecdotes from, local Starbucks locations.
Before we did rage-inducing irritations. Now we do cute idiosyncrasies and stories. Good? Good.
Anyway, without further ado (and I’ve already ado’d the shit out of this), on to Excerpts From Suburbia : Starbucks.
[dropcap]So[/dropcap], there’s this guy. This fucking guy.
I go to the same Starbucks about three or four times a week, doing what everyone else does – “working” on something that may or may not be important, pushing the envelope of when working becomes loitering. Whether we stop short of that line or barrel over it by hours, we all at least have the decency to fucking buy something from the store whose real estate we are hoarding.
But not this guy. Every time I enter this location, for weeks now, he is there, usually at a prime table, working at his laptop. I use the word “working” very liberally here, as from the couple of times I’ve caught a glimpse of it, his screen was displaying something very massive-multiplayer-ish and medieval. Obese and disheveled, he lives up to the unflattering stereotype cast upon the community of online gamers of which he is part.
He has not yet – not once – had any Starbucks product or the remains thereof on his table. I have seen a full size Hot and Ready Little Caesars pizza box, and I have seen a 40oz Slurpee, but I have not seen coffee or scone one.
You know what else he has with him? A space heater. Yes, his own space heater. At Starbucks. A Starbucks of which he is not a paying customer.
When I finally established a rapport with the crew there, I took a moment to ask the cashier “Hey, um, that guy at the front table with the heater… does he, uh, work here or something?”
The crew huddled towards the register, all smirking. “Oh God, no he doesn’t. We don’t know who he is. We can’t ask him to leave unless he bothers a customer, though.”
I would think they have every right to do just that, but, alas, he carries on slaying dragons and eating Skittles in the corner.
[dropcap]The[/dropcap] last time I was at said Starbucks, I plopped my laptop on the giant table between two other customers and went about the business of getting my mouse set up to do some work.
The teenager to my left noted the size of my laptop. “Whoa man, that thing is huge!”
“Yeah, I know,” I playfully agreed, “but I like having a full-size keyboard. It sucks typing on a smaller one when you’re writing on a normal one all day at home.”
“What are you writing?”
“Wow. People, like, still write books?”
“Yes. Yes they do.”
Awkward silence. We both turn to our respective screens.
[dropcap]Finally[/dropcap], I want to talk about the barista at this Starbucks that I love. No matter what I order, she shoots back an emphatic “Good choice!” after each item.
“I’ll have a… grande medium roast with hazelnut…”
“Oh, good choice!” (tap tap tap on the screen)
“Annnnnd… a salted caramel square”
“Mmm, great choice. Those are good” (tap tap)
I love this person. I am completely convinced I could walk up to that register and order a steaming cup of camel piss with a side of herpes and she would just smile and beam “good choice!” back at me. It makes my day.
It’s the little things.