Part 2 – Mac Books and White Ear Buds
Warning: This is part two of At the Starbucks, and the Starbucks, and the Starbucks. This is also a blog post that is absent of pictures so if you, like me, require pictures in whatever you read it may be tough to finish.
As previously reported, I was sitting at a Starbucks waiting for my vehicle to be serviced. What was originally scheduled to be about 2 and 1/2 hours turned into 5 since my car needed new brakes. I had time to kill and people to observe.
Before you think me too weird you should know that I didn’t spend the entire 5 hours eavesdropping on other people and their conversations. I got to read a few chapters of a book, finish up the graphic novel V for Vendetta, and respond to some emails. You see, I’m not a total creep. But I couldn’t help but take note of a few people while sitting at the height of American culture, the Starbucks.
Trucker Caps and Finger Nails: Our first contestant is a young woman, maybe 25, sitting along at a table made for four people. I’ll admit that I love stretching out and taking up as much room as possible. However, when the Starbucks is packed like a keg party at a college dorm on a Saturday night, maybe consider taking up a bit less room and leaving some space for the 97-year-old great-grandmother of 14 who just wants to sit down and sip her tea so she can choke down her 17th pill of the day. Instead, this entitled millennial has her 42” Silver Mac Book Pro Air Lite popped up, her purse precariously perched on the opposite edge of the table with all its contents spread across the linoleum table top, her iPhone 8 (there is no way this was a 6+ because it was nearly as big as the computer) lit up on Instagram, a coffee cup the size of a punch bowl, and a chocolate croissant (I am jealous of the chocolate croissant).
This young lady was typing furiously at her laptop, and I mean furiously. She was probably writing a blog post describing the overweight jerk dressed as half entitled golfer (read part one for my attire), half wannabe soccer player (meaning sandals), that didn’t know how to order a simple cup of coffee at Starbucks and now seemed to be staring at his too-tiny computer screen while eavesdropping on the other guests. I know she was typing furiously because the clicking of her 14” fingernails against her BookMac Bronze filled the shop like the clapping of hands at a Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch concert right after Good Vibrations. I’m a live and let live kind of guy but I don’t understand how you can go about your everyday life with nails that long. It seems to me it would be extremely painful and cumbersome.
It was at this point our trucker hat wearing friend (oh yeah, she was wearing a trucker hat that had no logo at all, just black mesh and a white front as if she was 1999 Ashton Kutcher) picked up her “phone” to make a call. The call was to her old hair stylist. It seems Ms. Kutcher had recently moved to the Commonwealth of Virginia and was in search of a new hair stylist. In addition, her roots were beginning to show and she needed a touchup so she called up her old hair stylist to get any information on her coloring. Being a bald man it would never occur to me to call up an old barber to ask what length guard I need on the clippers but I suppose this would be a common occurrence for those more folliclely privileged. I guess you can’t go mixing up yellow number 5 and yellow number 4 at the risk of melting your scalp. At least that explains the trucker cap.
Alcoholics Anonymous: I would never belittle anyone who is fighting a disease like alcoholism. Alcoholism can destroy lives. No kidding. However, I never expected to hear two gentlemen having a two person AA meeting at 11:00am on a Saturday at a Starbucks. Having never attended an AA meeting I can’t say what actually goes on but I don’t think the point is for it to be open to the public. It is called anonymous for a reason. And when I overheard, “Hi, I’m Paul, and I’m an alcoholic” I knew I should stop listening. I tried. I really did. I didn’t hear much of the conversation. What I did hear was just a few lines about spirituality.
Guy 1: No one ever worries about offending Native American’s religious beliefs.
Guy 2: I can’t say I’ve heard people speaking pro or con against them.
Guy 1: It’s all over the place. Just look at all the Indian casinos. They are so offensive.
Guy 2: I guess that is true. Teepees and feathers decorating them all.
Guy 1: I bet the media would go crazy if there was a Muslim themed casino.
Guy 2: Amen.
Weird right? First, I have no idea what this had to do with fighting the battle with alcoholism but not being an alcoholic I can’t really judge. I’m sure just having someone to talk to, no matter where the conversation leads, is helpful. Second, are you kidding me? I’m no expert but I’m fairly sure that Indian casinos are on, you know, Indian reservations and are owned by, you know, Indians. I don’t know what else to say about this. It just seemed odd to me.
Five Guys: Directly across the parking lot from the Starbucks was a Five Guys. Unless you are living under a rock or in another country (shout out to that one person in Malaysia who viewed my blog page), Five Guys is a tasty hamburger joint that will simultaneously make your mouth water and make your heart stop. I my golden age of eating (approximately 2008-2014 when I was probably at my widest girth) I could crush a Five Guys bacon cheeseburger and fries without hesitation. The beauty of a Five Guys meal is that the burger and fries are so greasy that by the time you have finished eating the oil has completely dissolved the brown paper bag so you have nothing to throw away. It is actually an impressive method of keeping the environment safe while simultaneously causing a stroke.
As I sat looking out the window I watched a mystery man enter the Five Guys. He seemed out of place to be entering such an establishment. This guy was ripped like Bane. I’m talking the good Bane from Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin, not the silly Bane from Christopher Nolan’s tedious The Dark Knight Rises. I know he was ripped because he was wearing the tightest tank-top t-shirt I have ever seen. If there wasn’t a contrast between his skin tone and the whiteness of his shirt I wouldn’t have known he was wearing a shirt at all. Veins popped from his biceps, triceps, neck, back, shoulders, abs, ears, everywhere. His tank top was complimented nicely by his camo-cargo shorts and his brown flip flops. I admit, I was swooning a bit as I watched him walk into Five Guys.
I began to sweat as he exited Five Guys and started walking towards the Starbucks with a giant sack in hand. I was flush with excitement to think that I might be in the presence of this godlike creature. He entered. I batted my eyelashes. He didn’t notice. I smiled. He ordered two iced Venti chia teas. I sighed. He sat down in an oversized chair to consume his meal and tea. I tried not to stare. He pulled two cheeseburgers (for those uninitiated, a Five Guys cheeseburger is actually a double cheeseburger and a Five Guys little cheeseburger is a cheeseburger). I gasped. He shoved the greasy meat past his lips. I yearned. He finished his four patties of beef in nearly as many bits. My stomach growled. He chugged one of his venti teas. I felt the need to pee. He poured two orders of fries (the equivalent of 15 potatoes) out onto his torn sack. I salivated. He shoved fistfuls of deep fried goodness into his gullet. I didn’t blink. He chugged his second venti tea. I really had to pee. He cleaned up his area and left. I ran to the bathroom.
All of this happened over a period of 15 minutes. Not only was this guy cut from granite but he seemed to be maintaining his awe inspiring physique while consuming more saturated fat in one meal than I have had in the last nine months. I wanted Five Guys, nay, I needed Five Guys. If this Adonis could eat two cheeseburgers and two orders of fries than certainly I could have a Little Hamburger. But I didn’t. Instead I had a turkey sandwich from Heavenly Ham and daydreamed of Bane hand feeding me Five Guys french fries. The sacrifices we make for health.
This concludes my trip to the Starbucks. I know I will find myself in need of caffeine and forced to consume the Pike Place roast again. I can only hope to be blessed once again with the kindest of servants and the most entertaining of guests. Thank you and good night.