January 19, 2011

folgers destroyed our coffee maker

Posted in Starbucks tagged , at 12:04 pm by weiszguy

The coffee maker at work hadn’t been used in months when I inherited it a while back, and the prehistoric sludge inside supported a thick layer of fuzzy green gunk. I took it home and scrubbed everything I could reach, and twice gave it the vinegar detox treatment.

I brought it back to work and filled it with cold, filtered water and brewed Starbucks finest blend in it. The aroma wafted through the office and drew all coffee lovers to it, and some only occasional coffee lovers.

This happy scene replayed itself day after day until, one day, we had no more grounds. I stole some grounds from another coffee maker in the building – but these were no ordinary grounds, no, these were Folgers finest blend.

The aroma was instantly revolting. It smelled bitter and metallic, as if it had come from Louisiana through an interstate pipeline. The flavor (once I got over the aroma) lacked anything beyond brown heated water.

The coffee didn’t get any better over the next few days. Thinking the problem was the grounds, I brought in some home-ground Starbucks to test my hypothesis. The ugly, bitter, metallic aroma and flavor disappeared instantly, as if by magic. I tried Folgers again the next day, and the ugliness returned.

The next batch of grounds the company purchased for office use was Folgers. No use complaining to HR – what was done was done. It took two months to use up that tub of nastiness, and then HR was persuaded to remedy its ways and return to Starbucks.

But this time the Starbucks didn’t taste the same. It was different from the Folgers, but it wasn’t as good as previous Starbucks attempts. I made Starbucks again the next several days, but it was never as good.

Taking the coffee maker home for another detox didn’t help. Brewing more Starbucks didn’t help. I even brewed another pot of Folgers just to see if the Folgers was tasting different too. No joy.

Folgers destroyed our coffee maker.

July 9, 2007

The Way I See It #202

Posted in education, Starbucks at 9:13 am by weiszguy

With every generation of children comes the hope for a better world – but only through the provision of education for all.  The millions of children who never see the inside of a school are a loss to all humanity.
– Charlie MacCormack, President and CEO of Save the Children

I can agree that education provides the hope for a better world.  I can agree that education for all is a noble goal.  I cannot agree that a child must see the inside of a school to be educated.  In fact, I might go so far as to say that a child who only receives education from a school (as popularly defined), is not really educated at all.  Mr. MacCormack’s error is equating education with school.

May 21, 2007

The Way I See It #253

Posted in parenting, Starbucks at 8:27 pm by weiszguy

I’ve discovered it’s pretty easy (and fun) to argue with the people whose quotes are on Starbucks cups.  I realize, of course, these people are probably much deeper than their quotes appear, but when I read stuff like this, I simply cannot resist.  Here’s one I read today:

A mature person is one who can say: My parents may have made some mistakes raising me, but they did the best they could: now it’s up to me.

— Shannon Fry – Starbucks customer from Ann Arbor, MI

I guess my main beef with Ms. Fry is her definition of ‘mature’.  Is she really saying that a person who can say this about their parents is mature?  It seems to me the revelation about being responsible for yourself is just the very beginning of maturity.  A person can’t even begin to start to think about maturing until they realize their behaviors, thoughts, and actions are their own, not their parents.

April 25, 2007

The Way I See It #216

Posted in Starbucks, stupid quotes at 8:16 pm by weiszguy

This is what was on my latte cup today:

A very bad (and all too common) way to misread a newspaper: To see whatever supports your point of view as fact, and anything that contradicts your point of view as bias.

Daniel Okrent, first ombudsman of The New York Times and author of Public Editor #1.

Well, I think I have to disagree. This is a subtle way of stating that truth is relative. Your facts are different from my facts, and that’s OK. The responsibility to report the facts is removed from the newspaper, and is twisted into the fault of the poor dumb reader to overcome his biases. Plus, the statement itself is the product of a particular bias that Mr. Okrent is unable to separate himself from.

April 10, 2007

The Way I See It

Posted in philosophy, Starbucks, stupid quotes at 10:50 pm by weiszguy

As I was sucking down my afternoon latte today, I noticed a quote on the side of the cup. The Way I See It, #226:

How would you rather spend your time: by tirelessly working to curtail our freedoms, or by joyfully celebrating our differences?

— Anthony Rapp — Actor best known for his role in Rent, and author of the memoir Without You.

Wait! Wait, let me try!

Would you rather pick rhubarb with your grandmother, or watch a movie about aliens? Would you rather study particle physics, or work out an arms treaty with foreign powers?

Nuts! Mine aren’t as good as Anthony’s! Anthony possesses the singular talent, so often lacking in mere mortals, of linking random and unconnected thoughts.

In all fairness, I suspect that what we have here is a textbook example of “quote taken out of context” syndrome. Anthony probably doesn’t mean to come across incoherent. But we can have much more fun if we assume he is a flaming liberal, incapable of distinguishing grossly differing concepts.

Is “tirelessly working to curtail our freedoms” really the opposite of “joyfully celebrating our differences”? Is curtailing freedom always bad? Is celebrating differences always good? Must the two be mutually exclusive? Supposing two things are different, why must we further suppose those things are also morally equal?