The Overly Affectionate Barista
It’s 7:35 a.m. and you stop at your local coffee shop for a cappuccino and muffin to-go on your way to the office for the day. A bit frazzled from being in a hurry, you walk up to the counter to order and are greeted by the perkiest and most enthusiastic morning person you’ve ever met at the cash register. You order your cappuccino and muffin (orange cranberry, preferably), to which the barista replies, “Thank you so much, Love.” Love? Did you miss the part where you and the barista became close friends? Is the barista attracted to you? Are they just trying to earn a tip? You shouldn’t be angered by being handed a term of endearment from a total stranger, but your cynical self has a habit of doubting all kind gestures from anyone – especially when under-caffeinated.
The Indecisive Orderer
You stand to the side of the pick-up counter waiting for your cappuccino to be made, but you notice that the coffee shop is severely understaffed for such a busy time of day. This is prime coffee time, so where are the extra employees? A strange lady with purple hair saunters into the shop and over to the counter. She proceeds to forgo reading the menu herself, and instead decides to ask the busy barista about what she should order. You’re trying to make it to work on time, and your palms begin to sweat as minutes of conversation between the purple-haired chatty Cathy and the sole barista go by. No one is making your cappuccino, and why is everyone in this coffee shop so talkative? Does no one have anywhere to be?
In the corner at a table, you overhear a man in a suit and tie carrying on an important-sounding phone conversation in front of his laptop. You find it odd that his day has already started so early. If this man is as successful as he sounds, why isn’t he working in his own office rather than using public Wi-Fi at a wobbly coffee shop table? He’s an absolute fraud, you think to yourself. He’s basically Elizabeth Holmes. You soon realize you’ve spent too many hours in the evening binge-watching “The Dropout” on Hulu, which is why you found yourself struggling to make it out of bed and leave the house early enough to not be stressed while waiting on your cappuccino. You hear someone frothing milk, and you hope that your order is up next.
The College Girls
It’s now 7:45 a.m., and your patience is wearing thin. You see two young ladies walk enthusiastically into the coffee shop and begin gushing over the new seasonal latte flavors on the menu. You’re jealous because you were once 21 years old and could drink a sugary latte before class every day and not reap the consequences on the scale. They begin talking about their group project, where they were going with their sorority the next Saturday night, and a new pair of jeans they just purchased from Urban Outfitters (not skinny jeans, of course – those are apparently out of style). As if you weren’t already miffed, you’ve now had your ticking biological clock thrown in your face by being forced to watch two lively college-aged girls babbling and carefree with their special flavored lattes in tow.
The Eligible Bachelor
Finally, your cappuccino has been topped off with a lid and you’re ready to grab it and go. As you are heading out of the door, you cross paths with a young professional in his late twenties to early thirties wearing a nice button-down shirt and fitted trousers. He seems relatively emotionally stable and isn’t on his cell phone, which is all that really matters. Should you go back inside and ask for a napkin? Is this meant to be? This happens in Hallmark movies, so why can’t it happen to you? He gives you a simple head nod as a greeting and continues to walk on by. You always knew you would meet your future husband this way. You vow to yourself that the coffee shop that was the bane of your existence 15 minutes ago is now going to be your daily go-to before work, even if you’re late.