I will admit it. I’m a Starbucks lover. Many people turn up their nose at this coffee monopolizing conglomerate, but I say “bring it on”. I love Starbucks. I love the atmosphere, the comfy chairs, the checkerboard tables, and the huge kitchen table at my local Starbucks. I do not consider myself a coffee addict in the least. I do not even own a coffee maker myself. I don’t need a cup to start off my day. I just enjoy the taste once a week or so.
I recently went to The House of Blues in San Diego to hear the group Nickel Creek. They’re a rockin’ bluegrass band. Yes, I said “rockin” and “bluegrass” in the same sentence. They’re a very talented group of musicians who play the violin, mandolin and guitar. They have a song called “Coffee”. No joke. It’s all about how you may wish for certain things in life, like a husband/wife, to win the lotto, or anything else that pops into your head, but you may not ever achieve some of those things. Yet, if you wish for coffee, you can make it happen that instant. You can get up, go into your kitchen and make a pot of that hot, delightful liquid. The lead singer seemed a bit obsessed with coffee, of which I am not, but I still enjoyed his ditty. My point is that coffee is a big part of people’s lives. It is the second most traded commodity in the world, trailing only petroleum.
Thus, I think I have a right to enjoy a tasty coffee every so often. But, I have stipulations. I want a coffee that I cannot make at home. If I can go to Starbucks, Peet’s or It’s A Grind, buy some beans and take them home, I don’t want any part of it. I want something in which I would have to own an espresso machine. The drinks I consume would require me to learn to steam milk, buy a multitude of flavorings at my local world market and mix it together in just the right measurements. I like my caramel macchiato, my pumpkin spice latte, and my peppermint mocha. It’s different. It’s bold. It’s not plain, black coffee. Don’t get me wrong. I have no problem going to someone’s home and consuming a cup of plain coffee with cream and sugar. That’s free. If I’m paying for it, I’m going all out.
The other appealing part of Starbucks or my other local cafe’s, of which It’s a Grind is a close second, is the atmosphere. When you enter a cafe, you are inundated with the aroma, the lifestyle and the conversation of coffee drinkers. When you leave, you trail the scent for a few hours. It’s great! Way better than smelling like a cigarette or something else that my nose finds repugnant. The ambience is soothing and comforting as I try to escape the outside world and all of the different directions I’m being pulled. I am able to sit back and have great conversations with my friends, read a good book or work on my Bible study. Nothing else can break my focus, save for a small, screaming child belonging to parents who miss their pre-child coffee drinking days and are trying to integrate their bundle of joy into that fleeting lifestyle, to no avail. It’s my oasis. Nothing can compare to a day at a cafe.
So, to those of you who refuse to even say the word “Starbucks”, may I give you one last thought. Starbucks may seem like a mega corporation, but it’s much more than that. It’s a place where, if you go often enough, you will be known and they’ll even make your drink before you open your mouth. You’ll make friends, you’ll share laughs and your pores will ooze that caffeinated goodness. Take a sip and enjoy the trip. Starbucks is here to stay.
Though most of my entries revolve around my faith, I have decided to go against the grain with this one, thanks to the encouragement of my good friend, Sarah.