First of all, when you come from a country as the Netherlands, the term ‘coffee-shop’ has a whole other meaning. Where you can get high here in the US on the caffeine, in the Netherlands you get high on other substances. Now, I am a boring Dutch-Guy. I haven’t smoked pot, or even normal cigarettes during my life, and alcohol is nice, but once in a while. I am really naturally-mellow 🙂 No artificial ingredients.
So, when I arrived in New York fresh off the plane (well, the less exciting Newark I have to admit) everything was new, amazing, and there it was, right after being released from Homeland Security after receiving my visa: Starbucks.
I hated that stuff. Why would I pay $7 for a cup of coffee that tasted like something the cat threw up yesterday and was invested by maggots. Something like that. I am serious when it comes to coffee.
But you cannot start living your life in the US without being introduced to some store-brands. Target, Best Buy, Walmart, Dunkin’ Donuts and of course Starbucks. And many others. Even if you do not go there ever again, everyone has gone to any one of these stores… rich and the poor. And we actually ended up close to another Starbucks, and gave it another try.
Ahhh… once I found out your should not drink actual coffee at Starbucks but the over-sugared, calorie-heaped coffee-mixes, I actually started to like it. I love sugar. It is bad, I know, but come on! Caffeine, Sugar and some chocolaty taste… it is heaven in a cup.
But when I got to know that, I actually found out what Starbucks was really selling… time. Like no where else, a Starbucks store is a store that you come to relax. It is not about the coffee, it is about escaping the idiocracy that forms our daily work-routine, and just relax a bit.
So, actually when I now have some time to kill and a Starbucks is around, it is my place to go. No matter if I’ve ever been to the store before, the mood is a bit the same, and I can relax a bit. Bring in my laptop, work a bit. Nobody kicks me out, and it feels comfortable.
Actually, it is so comfortable that my best friend who lives in Vancouver and I meet once a year in Seattle, where there are 3 Starbucks-es on every human in the population and we have our laptops with us to work, and move from one to another Starbucks simply to change our view of the world.
Actually, in three weeks I will be going there again. We have a lot of work to do, but because of the atmosphere and just relaxed mood, that is no problem.
Wow… Look at this. I wrote one giant commercial for a store. I actually mentioned the brand name Starbucks legitimately 10 times. And the weird part is, I really do not like their normal coffee. Can’t stand it. Being raised with the taste of Dutch coffee it simply doesn’t get there (a shout-out to Douwe Egberts here! SENSEO!) But, I think they successfully franchised relaxation a bit. And in this economy and unhealthy lifestyle of always working and always in a hurry, that is a good thing.
Go Starbucks (11) !