Tonight’s Interesting Starbucks Crowd

– The Asian dude in line ahead of me was quite adamant that the barista fill his gallon to-go box with latte. I don’t think he understood that coffee and latte are separate entities. In any case, he’s likely going to be disappointed when he picks up his order tomorrow morning.

Now that I think about it, maybe he really did just want a gallon of latte. That sounds kind of awesome.

– An elderly woman comes in looking very much like she’s walked all evening to get here. She scuffs some of the detritus near the trash can closer to the trash can, then grabs about twenty Sweet-N-Low packets and stalks out. Bless her.

– Guy enters and is immediately extremely (and vocally) disappointed that there are no open tables. As if our being seated is an affront to his evening. I’m sorry, dude, it’s finals week. Maybe you didn’t know? Blame the University of Wisconsin for forcing students into coffee shops en masse twice a year.

– So many people studying, though. The girl in front of me is studying Aztec history…on Cinco de Mayo (Editor’s note: I’m fully aware that I’m publishing this post several months after I actually wrote it). Does she know? She might be the one white person in America who is actually celebrating the unique cultural history of Mexico rather than getting plastered on Corona and body shots. That said, she’s made no indication that there’s a coffee drink in her travel mug.

– The girl across from her keeps talking. About her day, her diet, her facebook photos. Incessant. People like her, I always wonder, if she stops talking will she start crying? Is it one of those things? Is she subconsciously trying to cover up some recent trauma by blabbing on about the nothingness all around her? Or is she really just that boring?

I’m thinking maybe she’s just that boring. Aztec-studying secret party girl is barely responding to the flood of words.

– The girl behind them is studying for the CFA exam. She does not seem happy about it. She’s tearing a Post-It note pad into smaller and smaller pieces, forcing her nose closer and closer to the textbook as she scrawls miniscule notes. I don’t think anyone in the history of existence has been stoked to take the CFA exam, though. Maybe she should take this Aztec party class.

– Starbucks really is the number one place to be under 30 on a Tuesday night.

– A group of Middle Eastern men has conquered the couches. They’ve all got their laptops out, typing and talking in that rapid way that screams business. It’s a mini-Silicon Valley over there, I’ll bet. Caffeine stimulating ideas, conversation coalescing into code. Secretly, though, I like to think that the coffee shop, even a bland Americanized pulp product like Starbucks, is somehow similar to the Middle Eastern souk (is that the word?), where learned men gather to debate the topic of the day over thick, black coffee in slim silver goblets. Perhaps these young men are engaging in that tradition as best they can in the suburban desolation of middle America. Maybe if I stare at them long enough they’ll invite me over to engage in a spririted discussion on income inequality!

– I’ve been here four times over the past six or so weeks. Each time I’ve been here, the same girl has been here. The same cute girl, I should clarify. Maybe I’m always here on a Tuesday? Could be. In any case, if this is God’s way of telling me that I need to make a move, he really doesn’t get me and should probably start pushing her to make the move. Thanks.

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