April 16, 2007

Gimme a Tall, Caramel, Nonfat, Whipped Cream, Xtra Hot, Caramel Macchiato. With a Shot of Rudeness, Please.

So I'm not a coffee drinker. [GASP!] But I do like to have a Starbucks latte every now and then because, well, they're yummy. Although as far as I'm concerned, Starbucks is just a place with a bunch of different hot chocolate flavors. I don't go there often enough to be one of those caffeine-junkie afficionados who have the menu memorized and are fluent in Starbucks. But I do go enough to know something about ordering a dang cup of coffee. I mean I do have a professional degree and all. So why is it that each time I venture inside one of them I leave feeling like my womanhood has just be stripped away from me??

First I get the "hurry up and order you pathetic coffee ignoramus, you" look as I approach the counter. I guess because the regulars come in barking their usual order as soon as they step foot in the door. I, however, like to peruse the menu and see what's new. Maybe I want to try the special of the day. Or maybe I want to see all the different kinds of syrups they have so that I can try something new today. Or maybe I feel like having a [GASP!] tea. But, no. I always end up ordering the same thing because I feel pressure to hurry up and order lest I come across as a member of the shunned non-coffee drinker caste.


Then, come the "eye rolls" when I order my latte "skim...with whip." WHAT.IS.THE.PROBLEM? I get the skim so I can have the whip! Duh. And yet the barrista can't help but make me repeat my order and have a pained look on her face like I just broke a sacred Caffeine Code or something. Oh, and did I mention that I order it decaf? That really sends them over the edge.

But this last time, on Saturday when I was freed from my shackles had a moment to myself to leave the house and get my hair done (woo hoo!), I decided that I felt like a latte. And so I made my way to the counter -- slowly, so that I could have my order ready by the time I reached the register -- and my eye caught the special of the day: "Dulce de Leche" Perfect! And, just to make it extra sweet, I decided that I would drum up the courage to ask for caramel syrup too. Well. If it were only that easy. Silly me. I asked for a "Shot of Caramel" which elicited a look of sheer disgust from the stringy-haired college kid serving me. She said "Do you mean a shot? Or do you mean syrup?" Dammit, I don't know! Just get the caramel flavor into my cup. WHY is this so difficult?? I shamefully mumbled "Syrup. Yeah, the syrup." Once my order was up I grabbed it and high-tailed it out of the cafe with my head hanging low. I just knew the entire place was rolling on the floor in peals of laughter at the dumb-girl-whose-hair-was-a-mess-and-didn't-even-know-a-shot-from-a-syrup.

That's IT. I refuse to subject myself to this humiliation ever again.
Until they come out with a banana or coconut latte, that is. Best believe I am studying up for that day. And when it comes, I'll be back. And I'll be ready. Y'all just better watch out.

[And for laughs, you've got to read this post by a disgruntled Starbucks barrista. It's priceless. And it shows that it's not all in my mind. Warning: includes profanity]

7 comments:

JeniBeans said...

Oh my goodness, that was absolutely hilarious. See, in my opinion, this person is a lot like me and should NOT be working for the public. LOL I worked in sales for a while and also at a chain restaurant. It probably took less than one full day for me to realize that I was NOT a people person. LOL

I'll take a tall, caramel macchiato with and extra shot of caramel.

That's what I asked for the other day. LOL Apparently they had messed the drink up in the first place because I saw them take the top off, scoop off the top layer of nice whipped stuff...dump another shot of coffee in it, then pour more frothy milk stuff on top and then she proceeded to drown it in caramel syrup.

Didn't taste bad though. hehehe

Anonymous said...

I.AM.DYING.LAUGHING!!! And on this day, I needed a good laugh!
Thanks SIL!
Fe

Justice Ny said...

I, too, am in stitches. I always know that I can rely on my mamas to give me a great laugh!

I feel your pain (and maybe even disgust) with Starbucks and I often wonder why I go there (maybe because I'm addicted to their white hot chocolate - but that's another story). But anyway, I know they're over-priced and their entire business is premised on pretentiousness (sp?).

What the heck is "tall, grande, venti" -- give me a break - it's "small, medium and large". Every time I go there I order "small, medium, or large" and bet your bottom dollar the cashier corrects me. The first time it happened I thought...is it that serious that you must correct me. But then I realized that it didn't matter which location I visited, the staff was intent on correcting me as if I was stupid and didn't understand "Starbucks". Anyway, that just caused me to be obnoxious with it. So, I don't care whether you correct me or not, I will keep it simple stupid and I will order a "small, medium or large" drink.

Let's move on to all the fancy drinks. For pete's sake, a coffee is a coffee (and I'm a coffee drinker). I don't need all these variations of coffee. Just give me a cup so I could wake up and move on with my day.

When Starbucks first opened, I was big on trying all the different leches, and latte, and ccino (clearly, you can tell that I don't care anymore because I can't keep up with all the variations). It just became too overwhelming. What's the difference b/w all these lattes. Who really knows!!! So, I've kept it simple....it's either a white hot chocolate or a chai latte. And, I know you're thinking that that's still fancy. If I really wanted to keep it simple, I would just get a coffee (plain, old coffee). But I can't. I've found those two drinks (the hot chocolate and the chai) easier to order than the coffee. There's light, medium, dark, decaf, regular, Columbian, Somalian, Kenyan - really too many choices and until you figure which is which, they're all different.

I know what a chai and a hot chocolate tastes like - so, I keep it simple.

Onto the attitudes from behind the counter. I am not surprised at the posting from the barista. I always feel inept when I enter their doors. And although the intent is probably to take Starbucks customers to a new coffee experience - all I ever feel when I enter their doors is snootiness. I guess that's the experience that I'm supposed to have - who knows!

J. Fergie...I must commend you in undertaking this herculean task of ordering a fancy drink like a "tall, caramel, nonfat, whipped cream, xtra hot, caramel macchiato" That's a lot of drink!!!! And that's a tall order (no pun intended).

I think Starbucks didn't realize that people would take it so far with their drink choices. Or maybe the founders just didn't care about their staff when the created this system. I'm not sure...but I have stood in line behind the "tall, caramel, nonfat, whipped cream, xtra hot, caramel macchiato" orders and felt for the barristas. It's just too much to remember. Bloggers...J. Fergie is a sweetheart and if a barrista didn't get one part right, I don't think she would have a fit, but I have seen some people get really nasty about their 7-part drink order. It's just a lot!!!!

But don't be discouraged Fergie...if I could get it together I might order one of those fancy drinks too....but I just can't keep up.

Anyway, clearly I've got lots to say about Starbuck. But it's amazing how a little thing like ordering coffee could have such an outstanding effect on your life. (Or maybe I just need to get a life:)

Lisa said...

it's TRUE they can make you feel so ashamed... i ordered a "chai latte with a shot of espresso" and the guy laughed OUT LOUD and said, "you mean a 'dirty chai'?" well excuse moi for my stupidity, apparently everyone but me knows what a dirty chai is, sheesh!

;) lisa pizzza

Justice Fergie said...

See!! It's not just me.

Jenibeans (love the name btw): I agree. If you are NOT a people person, then working someplace where you are in direct contact with PEOPLE on a regular basis is not for you. Oh and I think anything drowned in caramel syrup is a winner :)

Fe: I know what you mean - yesterday was a hard day.

Ny: your comment had me cracking up. who knew you felt this passionately about Starbucks? I musta hit a nerve :) And I had no idea they had white hot chocolate? Will have to try.

Lisa Pizza: A dirty chai?? PUH-LEASE. How the heck are you supposed to know that? If he had laughed out loud at me, it would have been on. "Oh I GOT your dirty chai partner."

;)

GiBee said...

Dulce de Leche? Did you say ... DULCE DE LECHE?

Oh, my word... gotta have me some.

And I've heard "a shot of caramel" before, so that barista was just messing with you... I'd have had to bring out my best smack down.

Beth said...

Of course you get skim with whip. Why wouldn't you?? Loved this post, you know I loved it! But next time, sister, just get caffeine, okay??

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