Friday, June 03, 2005

Thoughts from the Starbucks closet

There's a Starbucks closet on the first floor of my office building. No joke. It's a closet-sized Starbucks. No windows. No tables. No seats. Like the drive-in window at a McDonald's. Only without cars. If I were a realtor, I'd dub it a "walk-in closet of Starbucks."

I've only recently started going there because of a recent determination that I deserve to have soymilk in my tea (Goddammit!). And Starbucks is the foremost purveyor of soymilked tea to service mid-town Manhattan. Standing in line this morning, however, I felt transported into a movie, what with all the order-lingo coming out of the customers' mouths. It's been spoofed so many times in movies - Monster In Law is most recent in my memory. But until just this week, when I became a regular customer, I had no idea just how precisely the spoof mimicked real life. Spoofs get their humor by Exaggerating real life. But in this situation, you don't have to make up anything to be funny, just write like these people talk.

And it's like speaking French - A. Different. Word. For. Everything!

Like when you order something "wet" it means "extra milk." Okay, so it's difficult to spend the extra syllables Before our morning caffeine. But really, if I'm ordering something wet, I'm usually not thinking about coffee. I'm thinking boy-toy in a tight t-shirt and how that makes me feel. But wet coffee...? Not only is it redundant but also confusing. "Mmmm, I like my men just like I like my coffee - wet." Wait a minute... who's supposed to be wet in this situation - me or the man? Tres confusing. Even worse, I heard it this morning, come out the mouth of a plain-jane dressed in her corporate duds (and I chose that word specifically) who's like you know going to the Yacht Club this weekend. No not the dog show! The Yacht Club!

I guess those were her only two choices.

I felt so out of place. Not only did I appear to be the only person to notice the ridiculousness of it all, but come on, look at my picture! Today I'm wearing a hot pink and black striped sweater. And the stripes are diagonal. So I step up to the counter in my screaming sweater and order my tea with soymilk. No venti, half-decaf green tea, juiced with rosehips and extra foam - hold the caramel - for this non-JCrew yellow sporting, non-descript home girl. No sirree.

'Cause you know, every time I crawl out of my personal closet (no lesbian remarks thank you - expand your mind here for a minute), I'm reminded that I just don't belong. Some days, it's empowering. Others, it's disappointing. Not because I'm worried that there's something wrong with me, but because I do want to belong somewhere. But then I look at the world and wonder, is this my only other choice? Do I really want to belong Here? Envision it - me at the Yacht Club in my hot pink, "My Bush would make a better president," tank top wondering whether Precious will take best in show this season.

I think I'm going to lock myself back into my closet again for awhile. And I'm taking my damn tea with soymilk with me.

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