Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Off to a odd start

This is repost of my old blog, to carry forth the flow of things......

This is how I got my start in the coffee racket, about 15 years ago....

Having Denny’s be your first impressions of coffee aren’t the kind of lasting impression a person looks for when trying to actually LIKE coffee. Here’s the situation, I’m 14 years old and I’m the new guy, and all my new friends like hanging out at night drinking coffee until the wee hours of the morning, so of course, needing friends more than I need sleep, I go out with them. Here I am, sitting with these new friends, being initiated in this new thing called ‘table-hopping,’ and I’m a bit sketchy on why I’m doing this, or more importantly, why anybody does this. I must be crazy. To learn better what table-hopping is, all you need to do is go to a Denny’s, or like minded establishment, and watch anybody under 20 years of age after 8:00 at night. They come in as groups, waitresses seating them knowingly, reminding them to behave, and giving them all her best stare-down. Then another group arrives, and another, some more couples, and now its party time. First the table-hopper checks to see if the waitress or staff are looking, then they examine where they want to sit next, making sure there’s room (there’s always room), then they half sit, half run to their target destination. Mission accomplished! They now have the privilege of talk to a whole new table of friends. Now a few more people muster enough bravery to make a run of it, and then the inevitable happens. POW! One gets caught, and then the waitress has it out with them, their intended table, the table that they came from, and anybody within earshot. That’s how it works, and of course there is the addition of sitting around talking, smoking, and drinking pots and pots and pots of coffee.

I’ll get back to the coffee, I’ve digressed too much. The wonderful staff at these establishments has been so kind to thoughtfully and carefully prepare my exquisite brewed-to-order cup of coffee. Two creamers and two sugars in their brew, same now as it was then, their coffee hasn’t improved, but my taste buds have. Nothing screams quality like bags of roasted beans that don’t expire for 9 months, coats of oil on the bean dispensers so thick that you can squeegee it off. Coffee brewed fresh every 2 to 4 hours? Calcium deposits on the brewer an inch thick? Coffee so astringent that it makes you wince like you took a shot of cheap vodka? Yep, they got it all. Of course, I’ve been to cafes in worse shape than this, and luckily most of those have closed. Now, with this kind of introduction to coffee, one would have to wonder, why did I ever really get into it? No matter how I had it, or how bad it was, I was hooked, and that is how I got into the coffee arena, and I still don’t know why, I guess I’m just a glutton for punishment.


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