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The Green Mountain State, Vermont

Sometimes a small is just a small

So, I was standing in line at my favorite coffee establishment this afternoon between classes and the pony-tailed guy in front of me asked the cute barista for "the smallest coffee size you have."
"You mean a small?" she asked him, laughing slightly and giving him that are-you-a-moron-or-just-someone-who-says-stupid-things type of look.
"Oh - - yeah - - a small" he said, looking down at his shoes.
The barista looked past him and raised her eyebrows at me. I gave her a commiserating smile, and it wasn't until after I'd gotten my iced coffee and was back on the street that I really gave the above interaction any thought.
What does it say about our current coffee culture, and our current culture in general, that a person has to assume that the "small" is most likely not called a small but is in fact called something else entirely? Perhaps it will be identified by some sort of secret code that only people who go there regularly will know; a trick to immediately identify foreigners so they can be humiliated and shunned. For example, the whole Evil Empire's short, tall, grande, and vinte bullshit. I had to google those. Just because you make your sizes highbrow it doesn’t make your coffee not taste like shit.
Furthermore, perhaps the small won’t be called by its logical name, but will instead be called by the name of another well known member if the sizing family as demonstrated by the always entertaining “We don't have small pizzas; we have medium, large, and extra-large pizzas phenomenon.” Whatever Buddy, that smallest pizza right there is naturally the smallest and is therefore the small and not the medium. You are a jackass.
I’m currently waiting for this logic to make its way into the bedroom - “No honey, the thing is…well, it’s actually a medium, it’s just that you’re last boyfriend was an extra-large.”
In conclusion, I don't blame the barista for finding amusement in the poor guy's befuddlement when he attempted to order a small coffee. Instead, I feel bad that we live in a world where a person must assume that the most obvious name for something is probably not the correct one; a world where everyday experiences have become alien and strange. The guy just wanted a small cup of coffee that didn't taste burnt.
This rant is over. We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

Comments

hey, i couldn't find your email address, so i hope you get this. jeremy parrish's email is jparrish@wcpss.net

please send me the link to the hike photos, that would be spectacular! dswilkinson@gmail.com

talk to you soon!
The Green Mountain State, Vermont

September 2009

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