I am not a coffee drinker. For one reason or another, I have never gotten into it. This is not out of fear of caffeine addiction or anything, it's just that it's not something I ever gave much consideration. How I make it in the college world without coffee, I have no idea. I somehow manage to get by.
I have nothing against coffee, I just don't tend to drink it. However, I really love the smell of coffee (especially coffee beans), I love coffee flavored ice cream, and coffee cake is one of the best foods ever. So it makes perfect sense, at least to me, that I like coffee shops.
I love walking into a coffee shop, taking in the smell, the atmosphere, the people. I love the simple food offered, and I love that I can spend hours there and everyone is cool with that. One of the great things about modern times is that coffee shop menus are expanding, and non-coffee drinkers such as myself can still go and feel like a part of the coffee world.
Yesterday, I went to Satellite Coffee, a local coffee chain. I was loaded down with my backpack, full of homework and books. I like to go on my own, so that I can get some work done, be in a social environment, and people watch. I usually manage to get a lot done, and it's always a good time.
Being both intrepid and not one to follow trends, I opted not to order Chai Tea, the popular drink of choice for non-coffee people. I instead tried a Vanilla Royal, which is a hot drink consisting of milk, white chocolate, vanilla, something else whose name escapes me, and whipped cream on top. It was pretty rich, kind of like a dessert drink, if you will.
Another great thing about coffee shops is that you see such a variety of people. When I arrived, I saw on the couches two older couples relaxing and chatting. On a bench with tables spread out were four people lined up, all on their laptops. In the other tables were students buried in books, deep in concentration and calmed by the muzak.
For the most part, a fairly subdued crowd. That is, until a group of what I would guess were high schoolers graced the shop with their presence.
Have you ever noticed that popular styles seem to repeat themselves? It happens, and sometimes my reaction is to burst out laughing. As luck would have it, this was the case yesterday. One of the group of said high schoolers was sporting a black polo shirt, and in a stunning image of James Dean, had his collar flipped up.
Granted, this was just a polo shirt, not a leather jacket. But I still found the spectacle wildly amusing, and I half expected the guy to suddenly break out some dance moves in the middle of the shop. What really got me even more was the sheer confidence they guy displayed. Whereas others might exhibit nervous glances and a sense of fear of making a fool of oneself, the guy managed to impose an aura of confidence. It was impressive, to be sure.
After a while, the high schoolers exited, apparently because they were too good to spend a lot of time in a coffee shop with a bunch of college students and older folks. As they made like Elvis and left the building, in walked a group of three college students.
This group consisted of two girls and one guy. They seemed quite genial, and they were lively and funny. The girls were cracking jokes, and the one guy was dishing them out as well. I got a reel kick out of the guy, mainly because he had really funny tattoos.
Normally, I don't look at tattoos and think they're funny, but this guy's were. Both his arms depicted an array of art, all in dark green. On his left arm, among other images, was a Greek X (chai). And on his right arm was an elaborate array of bones. I'm guessing the bones were a statement of some sort, as they seemed to be somewhat aligned with the bones of the arm. To me it had a very comic effect, especially the two random bones that were adjacent to the ones actually drawn in the proper direction.
Who would have thought that such variety and culture could be found in a place that serves coffee?