Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I lost My Dignity at Starbuck's

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Once again I proved that everything is a pain in the ass (EIPITA), and I lost my dignity in the process.

You see that fifteen cents?  That's my dignity and that's all my dignity is worth.
You see that mermaid with a crown?  She owns me. She's sitting there lording over my dignity, laughing and scoffing at me.

Nikki and I agreed that we would try and go a week without buying anything.  However, I found a loophole because that pact does not include loose change scattered throughout the house.  You see, that's not real money, it's forgotten, it's spent already, it doesn't even exist.  I only needed $1.50, that's what a small coffee costs at Starbuck's.

(Side rant)  Hey Starbuck's, as long as I continue to buy coffee from your legal crack house, I will never, ever, ever, refer to a cup of coffee as "venti" or "grande" or "tall".  I have a Bachelor of Science degree and I still can't figure out which is which so just give me my small (as we say in America) coffee and shut up.

(Back to the story)

I knew exactly where to find $1.50, hallway cabinet, big drawer on the right.  I calmly opened it, casually flipped through the coins and quickly realized I was way short of $1.50.   Immediately I could feel my biological responses kicking in:  adrenaline, sweat, dilated pupils, clammy hands, the whole works.  Quickly I ran to the bathroom, opened another drawer and found nothing.  Same thing in the kitchen.  Now I'm frantic, rifling through drawers like a burglar.  I'm checking drawers that don't make sense.  Sock drawer? Nope?  I know there's some change with the potato chips.  Nope.  I can't think straight.  Now I'm re-checking all the drawers like you do when you've lost something.   I'm shaking.  Then it comes to me.  The truck, there has to be change in the truck.   I run outside, and there it is.   Amazingly, when I add what I recovered from inside with what I have in the truck, it totals exactly $1.50.   It's my day.

I jump in the truck, race to Starbuck's, plop down my change look the barrista dead in the eye, and ask for a small coffee.  No snide look from her this time, she must realize I'm desperate.  She pours the coffee, brings it over and says the most hateful thing I have ever heard in my life.

"That will be $1.65 please".

No way.  It's been $1.50 for at least two years.  I ask her when it changed.  "Today", she says.

I start sweating, my heart races, my head pounds.  This must be withdrawal symptoms.  Now I know what a crack addict feels like.  I could pull out the credit card, but that will break the pact with Nikki.  I almost cry, then I gather myself.  Suddenly I'm 7 years old again and in my saddest voice I let her know that's it's been $1.50 for as long as I can remember and I don't have any more money.  She's not budging but the manager is frazzled and just wants me to move along and tells her it's OK.   I quickly turn and leave the joint like a thief in the night with my small coffee.

I got what I wanted, but lost part of my soul in the process.  I burglarized my own house, I nearly broke a pact, and I begged and pleaded with an 18 year old coffee pourer, I mean barrista.

Oh yeah, I proved once again that everything is a pain in the ass.

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