We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
If I said to you, "I have a great idea for a business. I'll open a whole new type of coffee shop. Instead of charging 60 cents for coffee I'll charge $2.50, $3.50, $4.50, and $5.50.
Not only that, I'll have no tables, no chairs, no water, no free refills, no waiters, no busboys, serve it in cardboard cups, & have the customer clean up for 20 minutes after they're finished."
Would you say to me, "That's the greatest idea for a business I ever heard! We can open a chain of these all over the world!"
No, you would put me right into a sanitarium.
And it's burnt coffee! It's burnt coffee at Starbuck's, be honest about it. If you get burnt coffee in a coffee shop, you call a cop. You say,"It's the bottom of the pot. I don't drink from the bottom of the pot.
But when it's burnt at Starbuck's, they say, "Oh, it's a special roast. It's a special bean from Argentina....
"The bean is in your head!!! I know burnt!!!
You want coffee in a coffee shop, that's 60 cents. But at Starbuck's, if it's Cafe Latte: $3.50. Café Creamier: $4.50. Café Suisse: $9.50. For each French word, another $4.00.
Why does a little cream in coffee make it worth $3.50?
Go into any coffee shop; they'll give you all the cream you want until you're blue in the face.
40 million people are walking around in coffee shops with pitchers of cream: "Here's all the cream you want!" And it's still 60 cents. You know why? Because it's called "coffee."
You want cinnamon in your coffee? Ask for cinnamon in a coffee shop; they'll give you all the cinnamon you want.
Do they ask you for more money because it's cinnamon? It's the same price for cinnamon in your coffee as for coffee without cinnamon - 60 cents, that's it.
But not in Starbucks. Over there, it's Cinnamonnier - $9.50. You want a refill in a regular coffee shop, they'll give you all the refills you want until you drop dead. You can come in when you're 27 & keep drinking coffee until you're 98. And they'll start begging you: "Here, You want more coffee?"
Do you know that you can't get a free refill at Starbucks?
A refill is a $1.50, 2 refills, $4.50, 3 refills, $19.50.
So, for 4 cups of coffee - $35.00.
And there're no chairs in those Starbucks. Instead, they have these high stools. You ever see these stools? You haven't been on a chair that high since you were 2. Seventy-three year olds are climbing &climbing to get to the top of the chair. And when they get to the top, they can't even drink the coffee because there's 12 people around one ittle table, & everybody's saying, "Excuse me, excuse me, excuse me....." Then they can't get off the chair.
Do you remember what a cafeteria was? In poor neighborhoods all over this country, they went to a cafeteria because there were no waiters & no service. And so poor people could save money on a tip.
Cafeterias didn't have regular tables or chairs either. They gave coffee to you in a cardboard cup. So because of that you paid less for the coffee. You got less, so you paid less.
It's all the same at Starbucks - no chairs, no service, a cardboard cup for your Coffee - except in Starbucks, the less you get, the more it costs. By the time they give you nothing, it's worth 4 times as much!
There are no coffee shops of the type you describe where I live. I don't like Dunkin Donuts coffee because it is too weak, and doesn't have enough caffeine for an exhausted working mother, tho the flavor is good. The atmostphere is uncongenial for lingering and I don't want to buy a ton of delicious donuts and start looking like the Michelin blimp.
At Starbucks the coffee tastes awful, it's true, but it has twice the caffeine of any other (Consumer Reports tested). Also, Starbucks where I live has the nicest staff (all friendly, worked there years, speak English) and I can linger there for an hour for a "lunch" with my dearest female friend (both middle aged mommies watching their weight) for $1.80 for a giant coffee of the day. More reasonable than anywhere else in my small town haven for insider traders and hedge fund scum...
My main gripe with Starbucks is that they should adopt the car-safe cup top design used at Dunkin Donuts, and serve you the cream and sugar, so you don't spend ages sloshing and stirring at the side...