Almost a year ago, I purchased this:
What made this whole deal even trickier is the fact that I rarely ever get anything bigger than a tall. One reason is because my stomach can’t really handle that much caffeine at one time. How do I put this delicately? I tend to have explosive diarrhea when I drink too much coffee.
The second reason is ideological. I wholly reject Starbucks’ gimmicky attempt to be something other than the McDonald’s of espresso drinks. Tall is small. Grande (which means BIG) is actually medium, and Venti (which means 20) is the largest option. Think about that board room meeting. Some corporate suit gets up and declares, “Hey…we need to be way cool in order for this coffee thing to work. I propose to you…Venti. BOOM!” Then he smokes while the room stands to applaud.
The only reason I bought into this black card business was because of the last perk: Free drink on my birthday. Imagine making a decision to pay $25 because in a year, you’re going to get a free drink worth $4.75, which, added to all the savings SHOULD put me over the $25 good investment threshold. Only then can you completely understand the sick inner workings of my sick, sick mind.
Having said that, I walked into Starbucks today completely by coincidence; I totally forgot about the birthday deal.
I get to the cashier and I ordered my usual…A tall Cinnamon dolce latte. And then, the same thought that always crosses my mind when I buy a drink from Starbucks crossed my mind.
And as she was ringing me up, I remembered. “O MY GOD. FREE DRINK DAY. I mean…BIRTHDAY.”
And I said to Ms. Barista. “WAIT! I’ll take a Grande!”
She flashed a look of impatience as she repeated the order: “Make that a GRANDE Cinnamon dolce latte.” She rang me up.
And then I remembered. “O MY GOD. GRANDE IS NOT THE BIGGEST SIZE.”
I said to Ms. Barista. “WAIT…make that a Venti!” I had violated my own core values by uttering that word for the first time in my life. But who cares right? You got to go big.
Ms. Barista gave me a “Are you fuckin’ serious?! I hate this job.” look. “VENTI Cinnamon Dolce Latte.”
I felt like the place went quiet. Everyone looked at me. Venti? Is he crazy? No one goes Venti. That’s just too much drink for one man.
Then I turned to the stunned room. I flipped out my black card. Birthday free drink bitches!
But inside, I was a mess. Maybe my eyes were bigger than my stomach. I’ve never gone bigger than Tall, and now I’m doing Venti? When they came out with the drink, my hands were a bit shaky, to say the least.
But as I drank, my resolve grew stronger. I can do this. And you know what? It’s my birthday, I deserve to indulge myself just a little bit.
I was less than half-way through the drink when I walked into the office. I needed to get something out of my bag so I set the coffee down. Turns out, the cup was just too big for the room. Of course, my bag knocks the drink over and spills all over my pants and the pretty UNDP carpet. You can say I made a Venti mess of things.
Minutes later, I’m making a Venti size mess out of UNDP’s pretty toilets.
The moral of this story is to never go against your values. Even on your birthday.