Three words that just bugged me all weekend.
I was working at a coffee cart located at Santee Court. I was all bundled up with fingerless gloves, a hat, scarf, coat, pants and flip flops. I was making coffee for a whole line of people. It was great! There was music playing in the background. And - hanging from the cart's rafters were my diplomas - both the college and grad school diplomas, literally flapping in the wind.
And, I woke up. I couldn't tell if I woke up right when I saw the pieces of parchment paper worth tens of thousands of dollars, or if it was because the spanish language radio station finally got to me.
In any case, the flapping parchment has really got me all shaken up!
I do have a dream to one day have my own coffee shop or coffee cart. I'd love either, because I just love the vibe of coffee houses. The art of the coffee house initially was what brought Alex and I together (www.coffeehousenetwork.com). I love coffee, and I love the idea of being the owner of my own steam wands!
Then, the politico side of me sits on my shoulder like the school-yard bully busy taking my lunch money. After I've put myself thousands upon endless thousands of dollars why on earth would I ever become an owner of a coffee cart? After professors have spent endless hours explaining the state of nature, wetland mitigation, and some good times spent reading the bible...here I am wishing and hoping to pull a shot, make a mocha...have I lost my mind?
But wait...I did study economics - and I do understand the law of supply and demand (as I work on my 2nd coffee for today). I do know that small businesses make up the backbone of the country. I do know that business is politics, and politics is business. Am I just afraid of telling people "I own my own business" not being able to say with my arms wide open...I OWN MY OWN BUSINESS!!! I MAKE COFFEE!!!
Oh my god, I am! I am! I am afraid of being a small business owner, and even worse...a failing small business owner...or EVEN WORSE: "I used to own my own business, but now I'm back, and millions of dollars in debt"
How do people get the courage to start their own businesses? In a world where too many don't have the courage to help those in the street...how do they get the courage to go it without THE MAN? Oh my god, my fingers are just shaking at the thought.
On the other hand, making coffee is more than making coffee. There's the romantic side of it - there's the love between you and the beans, the friendship between the cup and drinker, and the connection between the owner and barista. I remember the days when I used to talk to the machine @ Mud Bay Coffee....
"Come on baby...just a bit more hot water....."
"Ohhhh, ahhh yea...check out the crema on this shot"
"Goddamnit, piece of shit, good for ....please please please, just one more cup of hot water"
Electra the grinder was usually a better bet....
"Your beans smell soooooooooooo good"
"Sniffy sniffy...let me just breath it in!"
We weren't crazy - just hopped up on coffee.
In any case, making coffee just seems so natural. I miss it a lot. I'm sure I'm built for sitting on my ass, in an office, typing away. But, I miss pulling shots, yelling out coffee orders (Double tall lemon latte, non-fat, decaf....what the hell? Just drink water!) and I miss trying out all those new roasts.
I yearn to be a coffee snob!
But I can't because I have a master's degree. I have to pay off my student loans.
No coffee snobbery in the next few months for me. I will have to be a backseat coffee snob.
In the meantime I will continue to think good thoughts about Pretty Girl Coffee.