Auschwitz to decaf

My wife and I were in Starbucks again this morning.  We’re always so tired in the morning and it’s just around the corner from work.  In fact, there are two Starbucks around the corner from work, practically across the road from each other, but i’ll come back to that later.

As I was stood there looking up at the menu of coffees (despite already knowing what I wanted before we went in), my wife gestured at something behind me and said “Oh my god, would you look at that.”

I turned around and saw this.

Starbucks MS
(actual photo taken)

“It’s just fucking coffee” she said, rolling her eyes.

I must admit, it was a bit much.  I understand that a business, especially one as large as Starbucks, will have a mission statement.  Yes it’s only coffee but I can appreciate the need to direct the focus of their global brand through ideals that will benefit both the customer and themselves, but come on!

They want to inspire and nurture the human spirit?  Do me a favour!  The only thing they want to nurture is my wallet; have you seen the prices of their drinks?

And with regards to ‘one neighbourhood at a time”, I have to agree; these fuckers are everywhere.

starbucks escher

In fact, according to Wikipedia:

“Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with 23,305 stores in 65 countries and territories, including 13,049 in the United States, 1,909 in China, 1,555 in Canada, 1,089 in Japan and 927 in the United Kingdom”

Yeah, I’m not surprised in the slightest.  I’m convinced a majority of these are in Tottenham Court Road.

After reading that entry from Wikipedia, I decided to Google some interesting facts about Starbucks and  I came across this interesting list of 15 things about Starbucks that will blow your mind.

It’s crazy to think how successful their global domination has been, and let’s be honest, it IS a global domination.  At least, that’s how their Mission Statement reads.

Don’t believe me?

Replace the words ‘inspire and nurture’ with ‘destroy’ and you have something that wouldn’t have been out of place in Nürnberg in 1934.

But that’s possibly a little unfair methinks.

Make no mistake, I am NOT drawing direct comparisons between the largest coffeehouse company in the world and one of the most evil men in history (That would be like comparing a blowjob to sticking your dick in a blender), but Starbucks have succeeded where Adolf hadn’t.

Maybe he should’ve sold coffee instead of drinking it.  All that caffeine made him a bit ‘shouty’.

Just be honest Starbucks, we all know what your mission statement is.

“To make as much money as we can and spread like cancer;
one person, one cup,
and one neighbourhood at a time”

Don’t sugar-coat it with this cheesy and cringe-worthy bollocks.

Oh, and get your punctuation in order; that was one thing Hitler got right.

Then again, he was a bit of a grammar Nazi.

nurnberg starbucks

UPDATE – 29th August 2014

My wife and I went into the same Starbucks this morning and the Mission Statement has been painted over.  It’s not there anymore!

I’m not big-headed in any way, but I can’t help hoping thinking it’s because hopefully maybe someone working there read this post!

Twink-le Twink-le little Star (bucks)

The effeminate young guy behind the till* in Starbucks this morning was more camp than a row of tents as he took our orders and passed them to the young, sour faced girl lurking behind the machinery.

While we were all stood there waiting for the miserable barista to emerge from behind the steam with our coffees, a middle aged, slightly overweight, greasy haired man came in wearing a trench coat and a creepy smile.

He ordered a coffee and started really flirting with the young guy behind the counter. It soon became evident they knew each other.  There was some giggling, some pouting and the young guy’s eyelids were being batted more than cricket ball.+

It was becoming uncomfortable to watch so I started looking around the café at anything to distract me.  My eyes eventually rested on the supermarket plastic bag that the greasy man was holding.  There was something written on it.

“Enjoy Every Mouthful”

Of course.

man eating sausage

* Cash register (for our American friends)
+ Baseball (for our American friends)

Commuting is a blast

This morning, as my wife and I squeezed onto the London Underground train, we got separated into different parts of the carriage.  My wife ended up halfway down the carriage whereas I ended up near the door literally face to face with a tall blonde girl.

She wasn’t un-pretty (I’m assuming; she was hidden behind some heavily applied make-up) and was stood there not making eye contact with anyone as she pouted and posed among the newspapers and armpits.

In my single days I may have given her a second look, but since meeting my wife every one else comes a distant second. Although cheesy, this is absolutely true and has nothing to do with the fact my wife was:

a) five feet away and
b) reads my blog.

Anyway (moving on swiftly), the train began to pull out of the station and a gentle breeze came through the open window in the door between the carriages.  The girl took this opportunity to turn her head to face the window so the wind rushed through her hair as she continued to pose and pout.

It was like watching a Michael Jackson video.

She was loving it.

However, as the train picked up speed, the breeze became everything but gentle.  After a few seconds it had reached Hurricane proportions and her pouting was quickly replaced with her squinting eyes and flapping lips like a dog with its head out of a car window at 70 miles per hour.

More amusingly was her hair violently whipping and slapping her in the face, sticking to her make-up and going in her mouth.

“Hwaarrgh!” *Cough cough* “Gaaaak!”

Attractive.

After a couple of minutes the train slowed down for the next station and she finally managed to compose herself, pulling fistfuls of hair from her throat and gagging.  As she did this she looked at me and smiled with embarrassment.

“That didn’t go as you expected it to eh?” I said, looking at the make-up that had now slid back to her ears.

“Not really” she wheezed, “I was actually worried for anyone behind me getting hit with my hair!”

“It’s ok” I said, “I think the guy behind you enjoyed it”.

She laughed awkwardly.

“Shame it wasn’t in slow motion.” I continued.

“Like a shampoo advert”, she laughed.

Erm, no.

It was more like a ferret being hit in the face with a tumbleweed.

wind face

Are we becoming a nation of idiots?

In the past I used to believe that America was home to some of the dumbest people on the planet.  After all, they have no clue about anything outside America and their grasp of sarcasm and humour (or ‘humor’) is as tight as a slut’s vagina.

But after meeting my wife, who is from Las Vegas, I’ve had a lot more exposure to them (Americans, not sluts’ vaginas) and I’ve come to realise that this belief isn’t true.  I mean, it’s true of a lot of Americans, but it’s not fair to tar them all with the same brush.

Since my wife came to England I’ve started seeing the country through her eyes and cracks are beginning to form.  I’m slowly noticing that we are a lot more flawed as a nation than I realised, or cared to admit.  It’s like peeking behind the curtain at a magic show to see levers, pulleys and a white rabbit taking a colossal dump into a top hat.

England is also home to some of the dumbest people on the planet.

Case in point:

Last night, on the London Underground, my wife and I got off the train at Victoria station and shuffled with the masses towards the two upward escalators leading to the surface.  There were two guys in front of us and as we approached the escalators, one of the guys took the left escalator and the other took the right.

Neither of us paid any attention until one of the guys started talking to the other.  With a distance of around six feet between them and the combined noise of the escalator and the throng of chatting commuters, I should say one started shouting to the other.

Guy 1 – “So what happened next?”

Guy 2 – “What?”

Guy 1 – “I SAID, WHAT HAPPENED NEXT?”

Guy 2 – “Oh, right. Well she decided she was going to work Saturday instead”

Guy 1 – “She was going to what?”

Guy 2 – “PARDON?”

Guy 1 – “SHE WAS GOING TO WHAT?”

Guy 2 – “WORK SATURDAY INSTEAD!”

Guy 1 – “AH, I THOUGHT SHE MIGHT”

Guy 2 – “WHAT?”

I couldn’t believe it.  These two guys were together!  It wasn’t that busy in the station which meant they weren’t herded accidentally onto separate escalators; they’d CHOSEN to do that.

I looked back at my wife who was staring at them in disbelief.  She looked back at me, rolled her eyes and mouthed the words “Why the fuck?”

As we reached the top of the escalator my wife shared her thoughts with me.

For fuck’s sake England!

When an American living here rants about the sheer stupidity of people around her, it’s time to sit up and pay attention.

england fail

Train’d Monkeys

Over the years I’ve noticed a few habits adopted by the idiots I’m forced to endure every day on the trains (or ‘commuters’ as they’re better known).  A lot of these habits have become such commonplace that I usually can’t be bothered to blog about them, or I simply forget.

However, this morning there were three happening all at once and my Punch-O-Meter’s needle was twitching in the red zone.

Punchometer

See?

Dangerously close.

So I’m taking time out to vent about these habits that leave me craving the sweet sound of knuckles on face.

 

1. The Multitasker

This is the person who, whilst having a conversation with someone else on the train, is also reading their phone or tablet.  Even though they’re (thankfully) not talking to me, it’s still really rude and they don’t make any attempt to hide it.

checking texts

It’s bad enough that they’re flapping their jaws while I’m trying to sleep or watch a movie, but to be doing it and not remaining committed to the conversation they’re having is like getting a drum kit for your birthday and then playing it out of rhythm, like Yugoslavian Jazz. 

If you’re going to annoy me at least have the decency to do it properly.

 

2. Casual Viewers

I’m a bit of a viewing Nazi when it comes to TV and movies.  If you’ve made a decision to sit down and watch something, then sit the fuck down and watch it. There are certain things you should never do, especially when I’m in the vicinity.

These include:

  • Talking to me.
  • Talking to someone else.
  • Talking at all.
  • Using your phone (for ANYTHING!).
  • Leaving the room without pausing it (at home obviously)
  • Eating and paying more attention to your food than the screen

The woman sat next to me on the train this morning was watching some boring shit on her tablet, but was also moronically scrolling through her Facebook newsfeed on her phone.  I use the word ‘watching’ loosely as she didn’t actually look up from her phone for almost the entire journey into London, which was an hour.

I thought about all the money spent hiring writers, producers, directors (first and second unit), actors, extras and production staff, plus all the time taken perfecting every line of every draft of the script to keep the plot engaging, every camera angle to capture the subtle nuances of the actors’ performances, the scouting for locations, the permissions needed to shoot in these locations, the time spent in principle photography, all the post production, the special effects, music, overdubs, Foley dubs, the editing process to keep the right pace, the test audiences to ensure it will satisfy the masses and bring in the bucks, the premieres, the red carpets, the press junkets; all of this wasted on some bint ‘liking’ a picture of a kitten.

It really grinds on me.  Can you tell?

Then, when she’d stopped mindlessly scrolling through the pointless crap on her newsfeed and sucked in her drool, she then spent ages rewinding what she had been ‘watching’ in an attempt to find the part where she’d tuned out.  To be honest, I don’t think this woman was ever fully tuned in.

text movie

And finally,

 

3. The Aisle Sitter

This one has always confused me. 

It’s the idiot who gets on the train, sits in an aisle seat and leaves the window seat vacant.

Why?

aisle prick

Inevitably someone else will get on and want to sit down, so rather than simply (and sensibly) moving over to the window, they make a big performance of stopping what they’re doing (sometimes tutting and sighing in the process) and awkwardly standing up in the aisle (stopping other people from getting past) to allow the new arrival access to the seat by the window.

This is time consuming and makes absolutely no sense.  It’s a commuter train which means this happens EVERY day, and EVERY day they do the same thing.  I’ve seen it with my own eyes.  Same dickheads, same thing; every day.

If they don’t want to be disturbed, then sit by the window, or find a seat next to someone who already has.

These are supposed to be intelligent people, right?  I mean, they’re wearing suits and stuff.

I’m reminded of a quote from Tim Minchin:

“We’re just fucking monkeys in shoes”

monkey platform

You get me innit Bruv yeah?

There are four twats on the train sat at the table across the aisle from me.

All four are dressed like Carlton from ‘The Fresh Prince Of Bel End’ er, I mean ‘Bel Air’, but talk like the chavvy rudeboys they are failing to be.

There is a funny smell in the carriage and the conversation (ha ha, ‘conversation’) starts:

“What is dat smell innit?”

“No idea bruv, yeah?”

“Man, that smells is for real, I smelt it on the way up, innit?”

This really pisses me off. Do they realise “innit” is a slang version of “isn’t it”?

They have no idea how much I’d like to punch each of them in the face.

That’s reasonable.

ISN’T IT?

Shit down and shut up

My wife and I were in a mall in Vegas shortly after breakfast and, as we meandered around the shops I didn’t recognise, I suddenly felt the playdough effect kicking in.

Basically, a turd was imminent.

So I hobbled to the ‘Restroom’ to do anything but rest. I walked in and there were two empty cubicles (or ‘stalls’) along with three urinals, all of which were occupied.

No problem, this was going to be a sit down performance anyway.

I went into the first cubicle, locked the door (although it made no difference to my privacy with the gaps around the door) and dropped my shorts for the big performance.

I just had to make sure I didn’t make too much noise as it was very quiet in there.

I started clenching and relaxing at the same time.

Got to be quiet.

Got to be quiet.

There was a pause and all that could be heard were three streams of piss on porcelain.

Got. To. Be. Quiet.

Ha, no chance. My arse decided to sound like the final squeeze of a ketchup bottle.

I waited 5 minutes after I was finished before leaving the cubicle.

image