Christmastime in the Emerald City

{March 18, 2008}   Starbucks fails again.

You’d think I’d learn, wouldn’t you?

Welcome to my daily grind: I wake up on a crappy futon because I haven’t gotten around to getting a nicer one even though I can easily afford it. I am greeted with the scent of bleach because ever since putting all the rabbits in a room of their own I have become slightly obsessive about keeping the rest of the apartment clean (let’s all take bets on how long that will last, huh?) I watch a bit of news on one of my five fuzzy channels, get myself in some sort of hygenic state, and put on some relatively clean clothes. I don’t even bother with makeup until I get to work.

I’m supposed to get to work at 8:15am. I get to work at 8:22 on most days. And my boss doesn’t notice because she usually rolls in far later than I. On the rare occasions she shows up earlier, I get some mild faux-friendly chiding about my arrival time. I snort to myself and ignore. My first task is to tidy up the boardroom for the daily 8:30 meeting for one of our clients. I change the newspaper in reception, make sure it’s all tidy. Then I go to the kitchen to clean up after the slobs that apparently don’t show up until well into the wee hours of the night to dump disgusting grime covered dishes into the sink for me to touch. The dishwasher has usually been run overnight, so it’s my job to empty it, put away the clean dishes and put in the herpes-riddled mounds of bacteria left for me. All this while, I’ve also got a fresh pot of coffee brewing and forcing polite chit chat with the early morning seekers of clean mugs, trying to figure some way to determine those that rinse their dishes and those who surely leave spit in the sink. There must be some telling sign of such gross disregard for civility: a twitch, surely, perhaps a tendency to drool? Alas, nothing so far. One night I’ll snap for certain, and end up camping out in fatigue gear with an infrared camera to catch these perpetrators.

Also, right now, I’m pretty sure there’s black fax toner in my coffee. Super.

Right, coffee. I usually end up getting a grande at some point during the day. Because once I finish cleaning the kitchen, turning on my computers, putting on makeup and reading my morning email from my super sweet boyfriend (seriously, retardedly adorably sweet – more on him later when I’m in less of a foul mood), there’s really not that much for me to do. Sure, I’ve got phones to answer, maybe an email or two. But nothing that really requires very much attention. And so it doesn’t take very long for the inevitability of last nights insistence on staying up to watch The Hour to kick in, and I start feeling that doziness.

I needs mah caffeine.

Here’s the kicker: we HAVE coffee here in the office. It’s free. It’s better than free: it’s paid for by the same bastards who leave their slime covered flatware in the kitchen every night. Well, it’s actually paid for by all of our clients, even the ones kind enough to rinse their dishes or *gasp!* actually put them in the dishwasher with a grain of courtesy. The coffee used to cost $1.25 a pop, but now every client pays a flat monthly kitchen fee, and that’s just how it goes. The downside is the constant pissing and moaning from some of the less gracious of our inhabitants. The upside is free coffee for me.

But I don’t want it. I might frothy up myself a hot chocolate in our wee little nook, perhaps even an herbal tea or two. But I don’t want a hazlenut flavoured cup of cheap. I’m not interested in some ‘House Blend’ or some other signature series of whatever-the-hell. I want Starbucks. I want my overpriced goddamned status symbol. Why? Because I woke up on a crappy futon with crappy cable, and put on expensive enough clothing to convince those around me that maybe I’ve got my shit together. I feel the need to add that one little extra accessory to complete the ensemble: a ridiculously complicated sounding helping of overpriced steamed milk with that zealous little green logo on the side to make sure everybody knows that I can afford to pay four dollars for my beverage. That’s right people. Look at me go.

“But that’s retarded!” I can hear you all thinking. Yes. Yes, it is. So why do I do it? Because I’m a girl and therefore allowed a certain amount of irrational behaviour. I’m not heavily medicated anymore, I haven’t even used the word fuckbag in this post (yet), and haven’t made any stabbing gestures in a fairly long time. Let me have my crazy fucking coffee, okay?

One of the reasons I like my fancy ass coffee is that I’m really not a fan of the taste of coffee. I know, I know. More irrational chick shit. But it’s like alcohol – you may want to get yourself good and toasted, but that doesn’t mean you want to be sucking down some sort of gasoline-and-cinnamon flavoured mixture. I want the caffeine without the taste of some Ethiopian nation or another, thank you very much. And yes, I’m willing to pay for it.

Now Talea, being my best bud and all, usually scores herself a coffee by the mere fact that everytime I get myself one, I grab her something because that’s just how I am. In return, she often fills me up with Chilean red wine at her less bleachy smelling abode. She also doesn’t have a mouse in her kitchen (but I bleached!!! I BLEEEAAACHED!!!). So, fair trade. We both tend to go through phases in what we order, myself moreso than her. She’s more likely to switch it up, whereas I am a little more steadfast. For several months I would order nothing except a Grande Non Fat Extra Foamy Vanilla Latte, until I realized the majority of their foaminator monkeys sucked ass at their trendy job and couldn’t whip up a decent foam if their self-aggrandizing art school documentary or the proper healing of their most recent piercing depended on it. So I switched to a Venti Caramel Apple Spice avec Whipped Cream. This ceased immediately after realizing that I was drinking over 400 calories worth of warmed up apple juice every morning. What, I asked Talea, should I drink now? Her latest thing has been a Grande Triple Shot Caramel Macchiato for those times when she reeeeaaally needs the caffeine. That sounds good, I commented, but does it taste too coffee-ish? Even without the extra shot? Well, she explained, a Grande usually comes with two shots of espresso, but you can ask for just one – called a Solo, apparently. More jargon to make my order sound even more complicated? I am so there!


So down I go to get this more-caramel-than-coffee cup of sweet sweet wakefulness. And I enjoy it, and decide to make this a regular purchase.

This ends today, and makes for my shortest Starbucks trend yet. Perhaps one of these days I’ll kick this foamy monkey off my shoulder and suck up the free shit in the kitchen.

Today, you see, I actually paid attention to what they were keying in on their fancy little machine before I paid. Two grande caramel macchiato, check. A bit extra for Talea’s extra espresso shot, no problem. And then! The BASTARDS!!! You’d think maybe, just maybe, they would knock a few cents off for the fact that I only wanted half the espresso. But no, that would not be in accordance with the ass-raping ways of the Starbucks we’ve come to know and love. Okay, regular price then. Oh no! Not so! Those sons of bitches actually keyed in AN EXTRA SHOT OF MILK AND CHARGED ME EXTRA FOR IT.

Are you retarded? Did you think I wouldn’t notice this and perhaps find several shots worth of fault in this logic? You are charging me extra for my decision to use less of your core ingredient and more of your cheap filler? Your cheap filler that doesn’t even come in shots, but is simply poured until full? No. No, no, no, no, no.

You know what? This is the last straw. Three strikes and you’re out. No more Starbucks. I’ll spend that money on a manicure and a fancy ass haircut and find other ways to convince an uncaring public that I’m all swank and hip and whatnot.

Starbucks? Fuckbags.


Red says:

That was .. was beautiful. I hadnt read an Auntie Em rant in such a long time, I was definitely missing out on your colorful words and imagery.
I’ve never been to a Starbucks. Does that make me a bad person?

queenbitch says:

I’ve never watched what they punch in to their comp you’d think i would seen as how i work in the customer service shit. i dont think we have that warmed apple juice thing either.. hmm… i shall go investigate.
excellent rant though 🙂

i suggest of you want to look like a rich bitch get some of those bug eye sunglasses and big hoop earrings but that tends to be more skank than bitch. get some expencive PANTIES.

talea says:

Dude, you’re such a liar. You’ll call me up tomorrow all non-chalant at about 9:15, all ‘Hey, in a Starbucks mood?’
But this was a good one. You’re not AS insanely angry, I’m proud of you. You’re just pissed when confronted by retards and that’s totally normal.

Josh says:

I am behind you all the way. I also support your decision to ban Starbucks. They suck. And buying their coffee is like having sex with cops, you’re practically volunteering to make the world a crappier place. If you want to spend money on useless shit you don’t need, that makes you feel better, buy coke. Coke will wake your ass up. No, I’m just kidding, I don’t want to date a coke head. Buy energy drinks, or make your own coffee at home, or pour some everclear in a yoohoo and shake it up. Just give up the Starbucks thing. They’re evil.

I tell you what. Here’s my morning coffee routine, see how you like it. I clock in four minutes late, cause we can be seven minutes late and it still counts as on time. (they round everything off to the nearest .25 hours, fucking gay, I know) Then I smoke an entire cigarette. Then I go refill the coffee maker, with some shitty Foldiers blend prepackaged crap. Then I fuck around until the coffee brews, then I get a big thermos/mug of coffee, and drink it while I smoke a second cigarette. Then I get my ass to working. You will note that no washing of the coffee machine was involved in this. That’s because every fiscal quarter or so one of the girls from the office, forgetting that we are men, and don’t care, will see our coffee maker and coffee pot and clean it. They freak out cause usually it’s pretty much covered in old coffee and sugar and shit. I figure no one has gotten sick or died yet, so it must be cleaned often enough. Unfortunately leaving the damned thing on all day leads to burnt tasting coffee, so I steal the good sweetener/creamer shit from the office. I figure we deserve it more than them. (and by we I mean I, cause I don’t share) It costs me absolutely not shit, and the mug was even free. Of course it’s hard to pull off status symbols when you literally have a blue collar job and drive around on a scooter. Kind of ruins the image.

By the way, I’m glad I am the one good part of your morning routine. And your consumer whore has nice tits.

soverydomestic says:

I’m still down with Starbucks, fuck it. I’m all over the consumer whore shit now that I can be! 😉 Except I’m on the other side of the coffee snobs, I only drink their thickest mud in their biggest cup, so it’s always a Grande Dark Bold with *gasp* nothing in it. No cream. No sugar. I like it bitter. I have been warped by Dad, I’ve never liked it with extra shit in it, so it’s not totally a girly thing. Or maybe I’m manly like that? Hmm.

romi41 says:

Wow, you did NOT kick the foamy monkey off your back!!!….really?

And you know what? You’re so funny, because I DEMAND that my latte is always non-fat NO-foam, ’cause I get all pissy when half the cup is full of stupid foam, which means half a cup less of liquid to suck down through 3 re-heats till 11am…and of course I have to send it back 3 times out of 10 because it’s foamy as fuck…sigh….

I know, I know, right now I sound like a totally snobby bitch who would basically kick dirt in a starbucks employees’ face for getting my order wrong, but the fact is, when I spend five bucks on coffee, I WANT a slave-like-devotion to my needs, ’cause what the hell else am I paying for?


PS: “I want the caffeine without the taste of some Ethiopian nation or another, thank you very much” =me LMAO 😉

talea says:

I once threw a (joking, though they didn’t know it) shit fit in a Starbucks, cuz their non-offensive/new age jazzy music wasn’t playing while I was waiting for my coffee jockey to finish making my drink.
I was all, “I’m paying 5 bucks for coffee, I want fucking MUSIC!’
Ahhhhh, I love being a consumer whore.

@ Red: That doesn’t make you a bad person, it makes you a priveleged person. Live long and prosper! And for the love of god, don’t ever step in a starbucks.

@ Queenie: I would LOOOOVE those big bugeyed sunglasses, I heart them so much. But I can’t wear them because of my glasses and inability to wear contacts. And I can’t get them in my prescription because the lenses are so big and my prescription so strong that they can’t manage the curve in the lens. But they are there in spirit!

@ Talea: I know *sobs* But I was good today! At least if I cut down about 90% it should be good. Of course today I bought a friggin’ Cosmopolitan for all their “new sex secrets” (how much you want to be I know them all already, dammit!) so apparently I haven’t managed to kick the corporate consumerism.

@ Le Boyfriend: What’s everclear? I do know what Yoohoo’s are though. And the thing is that these fuckers aren’t blue collar. Shit man, I’d never touch your coffee pot, you wanna leave it all grodied up and manly in your little construction kitchen, go right ahead. But these bastards throw a SHIT FIT if things are not up to par. Remember, in the boardroom, I have to make sure all the chairs are at a forty five degree angle and that we have our corporate logo branded pads of paper at each chair with a logo branded pen placed across the paper at a diagonal. I mean retarded. Seriously. But you steal that creamer! Steal it as much as you can! Fight the system! It’ll make me feel better about working for the man 😦

@ Super Awesome Domestic Crafty Mom Who Throws Awesome Birthday Parties: pfft, you can be a consumer all you want, you live on four hours of sleep and the only man you work for is your own. You’ve got so much awesome-cred that you can get away with Starbucks, especially since you’re all “I’m not here for your logo, I’m here because I need Java and you’ve got a pipeline. Now pour, foam monkey!” At least that’s how I imagine you saying it 😀

@ Romi: It doesn’t matter how you take your coffee at Starbucks as long as you’re super demanding and snobby about it. If they want to be super snobby about the fact that they wear green fucking aprons and are allowed to keep their tongue piercings in (bitter! bitter! bitter!), we are allowed to be snobby about our super foam or no foam or I-want-your-firstborn-child-stirred-in-there-you-sonofabitch.

@ Talea: Dude, I totally remember you telling me that! That’s awesome to the core. Damn, I wish I had been there.

May I be so bold as to direct you to Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping at
Performance artist and social agitator in the guise of a baptist preacher, truly funny and anti-consumerism. One of his major targets are any Starbucks in the area he is performing in. Starbucks actually has a company policy egarding any Rev Billy citings and what to do if he and his choir show up in your starbucks… 🙂

*note* Rev Billy is a performance artist, parodist and anti consumerist and is also the author of “What Would Jesus Buy?”, a satirical look at how consumerism is destroying America. He and his choir stage “revivals” all around the US, meant to educate and entertain. He is not a religious reverend, so don’t expect any spiritual awakening. He is a revernd of anti-corporate agitation.
Just had to clear that up in case someone thought I (an atheist) was spreading religion… 🙂 I feel better now…

wow, I meant sightings, not citings….weird typo…need more caffeine

queenbitch says:

lol i have that prob too. all the cool sunglasses i wanted i couldnt have my prescription in. it sucks.

Josh says:

Dude, everclear is the hardest liquor you can buy legally. I mean moonshine is a bit rougher, but everclear is like 190 proof or some shit. Just about pure alcohol. I don’t like white collar pussies. Unless of course those white collar pussies are literal pussies, I was talking about the alleged men folk who bitch when things aren’t clean enough, or they get a little blister from raking the yard or some shit like that.

You could rinse out your Starbucks cup and fill it with Pepsi. Then use that to wash down a few NoDoze (caffeine pills). Look cool/snobbish, enjoy a great tasting beverage, stay wired for the whole day, and recycle all at the same time. 😛

Socially stylin, taste bud approved, and environmentally friendly. DUDE, I’m tellin ya! 😉

queenbitch says:

wow we have moonshine over here but i aint heard of everclear, well except for the music band.

Duffboy says:

This post would be a great addition to “The Starbucks Experience”, have you read that book? One more reason I stay away from coffee, too much swankiness.

queenbitch says:

Oh! i was in starbucks yesterday and i remembered this story. my workmates husband wrote a poem and it got put on the starbucks wall and apparently they wrote it up really messy and then they took it down and LOST IT! so the husband wrote a letter of complaint to them and they no longer go there as it was his only copy of the poem. Every time she sees me drinkin starbucks she gives me the evils.

guess starbucks sucks world wide.

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