Being the true genius that I am, I chose this week, the week we "spring forward" for Daylight Savings, to ditch my daily Starbucks habit. I'm not ditching caffeine, just Starbucks. Other coffee houses are fine, but I'll be damned if I continue to dole out $3.50 every day to support a chain of coffee houses that can't seem to properly and politely sell me a cup of joe. In case you're curious what that comes out to annually if I buy one grande skinny vanilla latte five mornings a week: $910 a year (I don't even spend that much on my hair every year!). I used to consider it a luxury that was worth the cost, but I have decidedly changed my mind.
Why is that, you may be wondering? Well, let me tell you!
Firstly, I am so over the coffehouse-employee attitude. Congratulations. You work at Starbucks. Why, may I ask, does this entitle you to treat me as an inferior citizen? Am I not keeping you gainfully employed by paying WAY too much for a lukewarm beverage every morning?
Which leads me to point No. 2: I am ordering what is probably one of the most commonly ordered drinks at Starbucks. Every day. A grande skinny vanilla latte. It contains milk, espresso, and syrup. The process of making the beverage includes squirting syrup in the cup, steaming the milk, dripping the shot of espresso, and then combining all of said ingredients in said cup. I know this because I have an espresso machine at home. I have made this beverage. It is not difficult. Why, then, when my order is explicitly written on the side of said cup, am I receiving beverages that are decidedly not grande skinny vanilla lattes? Would you like to know what the straw that broke the camel's back was? On Friday morning, preceeding a work day that I knew would be hellacious, I visited my local Starbucks for my hot, grande skinny vanilla latte, and after tolerating extreme attitude from a Starbucks cashier, I picked up my beverage and breezed on out to my car. Having apparently not learned my lesson from previous latte fuck-ups, I did not taste the beverage in the store, and did not taste it until I was already parked in front of my office and didn't have time to go back to the store so that a rude employee could remake my latte. It was ice fucking cold. It was as though someone had pumped the syrup, dripped the espresso and then taken a jug of milk out of the fridge and poured it into the cup. It was, needless to say, not steamed. Look. The store was not busy when I was there. I was the only person in line. I am there every day. You have fucked up my drink so many times that at this point I am starting to think it's purposeful. I've never been anything but kind to you, even after that time you gave me just steamed milk with nothing else in it, so why in the name of God is it so hard for you to make a fucking latte?
Point No. 3! This is sort of related to Point No. 2 since it involves a certain level of incompetence. I had been frequenting a Starbucks that is very close to my office. This particular Starbucks has rather friendly employees who unfortunately seem to have their heads way, way far up their asses. They're having conversations with regular customers about their weekend plans while 20 of us are standing in line and are at their mercy because we need our damn coffee and must patiently wait for Cheerful Cheerfulson to finish her conversation with Equally Oblivious Customer about why EOC's friend no longer comes to this particular Starbucks (He got a different job, and therefore he now frequents a Starbucks closer to his new office. Now everyone in the store knows, move along!). Although this Starbucks is quite busy and it takes, on average, 15 minutes to obtain a latte, even when it is not busy, you will wait the same amount of time. Why? I DON'T KNOW. It is the mystery of that particular store. Everyone in my office is aware of this mystery and comments on how long it takes to get their drinks. They may be the only person waiting for a drink, and the person behind the espresso machine always LOOKS busy, but somehow is not producing their beverage.
Here is what I think. I think it should be mandatory that all Starbucks employees receive training at the busiest Starbucks in San Francisco. Because have you ever been to a Starbucks in San Francisco at 8 a.m. on a Wednesday morning? The line is out the door, and when you see it, you think that surely you will be there for half an hour waiting for your drink. Do you want to know how long it actually takes? About a minute. Those mean fuckers (and they are MEAN in San Francisco) have got it down to a science. Get your money out and have it ready because they are ready for you and mere SECONDS after you place your order, your drink will be ready, waiting for you on the counter, hot and made correctly.
But I digress.
So because I was irritated with the mysterious wait, I decided to start going to a Starbucks that is slightly farther away than the Long Wait Starbucks. That is when I encountered We-Will-Fuck-Up-Your-Drink-In-More-Ways-Than-You-Thought-Possible Starbucks.
So I have had it. HAD IT! I am making coffee at home. I am drinking the coffee at work. I am *gasp* going to get coffee at Peets or *double gasp* an INDEPENDENT coffee house!