Blog Archive

because we should, and medium is easy

see? it works. when things ran through my head today, I wrote them down. and here we sit.

just so you're all aware, it is so hot in our apartment right now - it's back up to like, almost sixty degrees during the day, and the heat in my apartment is controlled by the landlords. so the first time it got cold, they turned it on, and now, it's ninety in here. I have all the windows open and the fans on like it's june or something.

so we've got these eco-containers at work. we use all kinds of recycled stuff, our cups are biodegradable, our plastic cups are made of corn (really) and every night we put out all the milk jugs and the cardboard to recycle it. but then we got the eco-containers. now the large cups are these pretty green and white jobs, and I told troy that we should get all of them like that. he said that eventually we would, but because they're so much more environmentally friendly, they're also much more expensive. to replace all of the cups would be about an additional eight hundred dollars a month more than what the cups already cost now. I looked at him and asked him then, if the other cups are alright, then why do it?

he looked me in the eye and said simply, "because we should."

I almost cried. in that moment, I wished I could just give him everything, and dedicate my life to the coffee shop, just to create more of that feeling. and then of course, work flared back up, and the moment went away, but I remembered.

I wish everyone thought like that. just to do things because we should. be nice. be patient. let each other merge onto the highway. because you don't get like, money for this stuff or anything, but you do get so much - so much. the step book calls it "the satisfactions of right living" or something, we were reading it last night. let me see if it's already typed up someplace. fuck. I can't find it. I'll post it when I have time, it's a lot to type. but it talks about just that, about how living usefully and doing things the right way doesn't get you fame or fortune or a big bank account. it gets you peace of mind and a comfort in your own skin, among other things. and I sat there last night, reading, then talking, and realizing that this is how things are for me now. each day is about how much better can I be, how much less of the crap I pulled yesterday can I omit... another line in that section talks about just simply doing the best we can with the cards we're dealt. it just really struck me, between that and the should-ing.

another coffee shop kind of microcosm experience today was the realization that people balk against change, and that there's a comfort in ordering things in medium. the change experiment happened when we got a delivery of our lids, and they were white instead of black, because there weren't any black ones for that order. so, there's the plastic thing full of lids down on the service bar, six little stacks: two stacks of the white lids, front left and second spot left; flat lids and cold drink lids making up the spaces on the right, and the usual black lids in the very back left spot. I went down to restock mid-morning, and I noticed that people had actually reached around the white lids to get to the black ones. the white lid stacks were pretty much untouched, and there were almost no black ones. it reminded me of this thing I saw on tv once, about bees or ants or something, and they had built a little nest, and then went off for a while to do whatever they do, and the nature channel people made a replica of the nest exactly the same about a foot away, and then surrounded the original nest with a circle of spaced out pinecones. not like, a fortress or anything, like six of them all spread out. so the bees or whatever they were come back, and they don't even hesitate - they just go into the nest that didn't have the pinecones around it. I think that makes a profound statement about the human condition, only I'm so tired right now that I can't word it other than telling the lid story and then telling the bee story and telling you that somehow, they are the same.

I can't even tell you how many times people order medium, and those types always do it in the form of a question. there are the regulars, and even people who have never been there, that know what they want exactly.

"small coffee in a medium cup, and can you put the soymilk out please?"
"two large half-cafs with french, one with a little room, one with a lot of room."
"small latte with one-third the milk."

that last guy I like. he's the one-third-the-milk latte guy. I guess no one was getting it how he wanted it, and so one day he orders a double with steamed milk on the side. I call him over and ask him if he's planning on combining them himself. he goes, yes ma'am. so funny. I go, okay. so when you order a latte with one-third the milk, because it's a latte, we're going to assume to fill the rest of the space up with foam. like a wet cappucinno. so I made the espresso and steamed the milk, and had him show me how he wanted it. turns out he wants a macchiato, only with milk and no foam. good for him, because it's like, half the price of a latte, too. so, then there's the people who will occasionally complain, and when we reinforce to them, look, you're paying like, four dollars for a coffee, so you'd better be getting it the way you want it. but it seems like they like to just complain about it a little and then insist it's really no big deal. which, if it wasn't, for real, then they wouldn't be saying anything. seriously.

so, back to the medium people. they look at the sizes, and look at you, and go, "medium?" which is far different than the way the people who really want a medium go "medium." it's a non-issue for them. it's so strange, it's almost like they want permission, like in that moment, it's like, I really don't know myself, please don't make me decide, because then I'm going to have to figure out who I am and what I really want, and I don't know if I can handle that. so they go, "medium?" and you smile to yourself a little bit, knowing really, that most of them wish they were able to be the soy hot chocolate woman or the hot wet & skinny capp lover. I guess some people have to be cattle, so that the rest of us have something to compare everything to - not in a better than / worse than way, but more like in "conversations with god" where god's all talking to the guy and going, how can you know what you are, if you don't know what you aren't? if there wasn't hurt, we might not know joy or freedom, you know? there would be no measure of how things felt, no perspective on differences. so I guess we need the medium (?) people.

who decided how to lay out a keyboard, anyway? why is the question mark over there?

all this, and nary a stitch of caffiene today, besides the shitty cup of office coffee this morning.

another loaded day tomorrow, work-bank-eyedoctor-gym-eat-meeting, and then the morning shift again at work. but then it starts to settle down. like kristin put it, I love my weekends like a fat kid love cake. mine. if I had a label maker, I'd make a "mine" label for it.

medium.

should-ing.

love you.

~vvb

Victoria Uhl