Starbucks: Where Everybody Knows My Name

Do you know people who, when they walk into a restaurant, coffee shop, or store, is like Norm from the '80s TV show "Cheers?" They walk in and everyone knows their name? I know a couple of people like that, and I'll admit I've been half-embarrassed and half-envious being with them.

I'm not like that everywhere, but I have become a regular at my neighborhood Starbucks. I know the names of most of the morning staff, and I'm starting to get to know some of the other customers who come in regularly.

I just bought a portable wireless router so I can start writing at the local library instead, but as I write this at 9:30 am, the library STILL isn't open yet. I know that if I start writing at the library instead of Starbucks, I'll eat less junk food (those cheese danishes at Starbucks are super-delish), and I'll spend less money.

After all, I do get distracted easily at my local Starbucks. Besides chatting with the other regulars, many of the moms I know in the neighborhood or moms of kids my son goes to school with stop by. One day I spent two hours talking to one of the moms.

These interactions decrease my productivity, but increase my happiness exponentially. There's something about sitting down to talk to someone where it's spontaneous. We didn't have to labor over our schedules to fit each other in.

I've learned that one of the baristas is also a songwriter, another is a professional painter (check out her work, she's good). The painter says she works at Starbucks for the insurance coverage. Makes sense.

I had earlier ideas for a blog post titled "My Love/Hate Relationship with Starbucks" because I really do spend too much money there, and I eat too many empty calories, but I still really love my Starbucks. I've taken to calling it "my office" because I do write there a few times per week. I can't write at home because I'm distracted by the pile after pile of stuff that needs to be taken care of (laundry, bills, filing, toys, etc.).

My "office" at Starbucks
My "office" at Starbucks
I will try to write more at the library, but I'm quite sure I'll still visit my local Starbucks at least once or twice per week. I gotta spend my dollars there, keeping the place in business, I need to keep up with my peeps there, and I've been known to get a discount now and then for followup beverage orders. Being a regular has its perks.

What are some of your local haunts?


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