Nosy at Starbuck’s

In lieu of my recent posts about the ugliness of social media, I thought I’d share something contrary to that topic. It has to do with something I observed at Starbuck’s.

I don’t drink coffee. Never acquired a taste for the bitter caffeinated beverage, so you might wonder why the heck I was there.

Well, I wanted to get out of the house for a bit and brought my laptop to do some writing/editing work at the infamous coffeehouse. I ordered breakfast … oatmeal, and a hot tea, then settled in at a table, opened my laptop and got to work.

Like me, patrons usually have their faces lit up by a screen or dropped downward buried in a cell phone. Every once in a while, I take a break from my own computer and scan my surroundings.

Do you know what I noticed when I did this recently?

This country (and the world) is not so divided as we’re led to believe. Aren’t there just two groups of people in the west that hate each other? The far right and the far left? I didn’t see two groups unwelcoming and disdainful toward each other at Starbuck’s. I saw individuals going about living their daily lives.

Behind me, I heard two women with accents visiting with one another. One was British and the other sounded Asian.

In front of me, I saw a table with Hispanics that appeared to be three generations. A grandma, her grown daughter, and an adorable three-year-old boy who looked like a little man with his handsomely swept back hair.

Beside me, a guy with a ZZ Top (or Duck Dynasty) beard, talked to a handsome athletic looking man.

Behind the Starbuck’s counter, a mix of different ethnicities worked diligently and efficiently to serve their many customers.

On the high-top table in the center of the store, a white elderly couple sat with their lattes munching on scones. Near them was a young African-American couple.

Scattered at different tables, there were  college students with laptops wearing earbuds.

Of course, there was me, a middle-aged white (short) woman with her laptop open but ignoring it to be nosy.

We truly are diverse and live in harmony with one another. These so-called “far left or right” groups are overblown by the media, given way too much attention, and yet they barely exist, if at all.

I hope the point I’m making is understood. The individuals I observed at Starbucks are the real people of the world, working, going to school, visiting with one another over lattes. We are good at heart. We are humans . . . being . . .

I wish for everyone to see individual humans and the true harmony we live in every day. I pray for this realization.

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24 comments

  1. OK, but was there any interaction among/between the sets of people who seemed to be already pre-separated? Like the bumper stickers say, and I guess as demonstrated by your observation, groups can co-exist, but communication between is where the disconnects and disagreements happen.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for reading about my morning at Starbucks. Not knowing the backstory of these strangers at the place, I wouldn’t call them “pre-separated” groups. I interacted with the Hispanic family about their adorable 3 year old. They responded in kind. The two ladies at a table near me were British and Asian. I remember lots of smiles of acknowledgement among strangers, including me.

      Baristas behind the counters were of different ethnicities having to work together responsibly and do business with all different ethnic background customers. No miscommunication, attitudes or disdain for one another occurred. I’m optimistic that we aren’t divided by hatred as the media, politicians and social media would have us believe.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wonderful post, Lori! Politicians and the media all around the world want us to believe we’re divided because it’s easier to control us when we’re afraid like sheep in a pen that’s surrounded by wild dogs – or something like that 😉
    But when we look around, really look, we will see just like you did that we’re more alike than we think.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a lovely post, Lori. Starbucks creates the kind of environment I love–one in which everyone is welcome. I’m glad you went there.

    I have a hard time writing at Starbucks. I get too distracted people watching.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi L. We’re not too far from each other. We could even be at the same Starbucks and not know it.

      Yeah, I can’t write in public either. My stuff was already written and I was going over some editing work. Don’t know that I got much done, because as you can tell, I was doing what you said . . . people watching.

      Have a great weekend. 🙂

      Like

  4. I love this. And reflects my own observations, views and hopes. Thanks for articulating it so well, Lori.

    Though, it really does depend upon where you live for the diversity of a generic Starbucks crowd. Where we live in the South, it’s still very segregated in many forms: age, education, gender, ethnicity, job class and of course ‘race’ I mean there’s a real ‘other side of the tracks’ line of demarcation that locals uphold to the death…but then you understand that having lived in FL – a different world down here that’s for sure…especially for non-Southerns like me.

    But I gotta say, ChiTown has always been an easy to mix&mingle area from way back. At least that’s been my experience growing up and going back to visit.

    peace

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Laura. You know, when I lived in Florida, it really wasn’t like the south. A lot of people migrated there from the north (mostly NE). Rarely met someone with a southern accent. There were also a lot of different Latin cultures from Puerto Rico, to Cuba to all different South American countries. I once posted about the diversity of my neighborhood there.

      I’m not familiar with what it’s like to live in South Carolina. I only vacationed in Charleston once. Went on a ghost tour that was really cool.

      I’m out in the suburbs of Chicago, and there is much more diversity here now then when I left for Florida a quarter of a century ago. Although, there is that “line” in the city where there are gangs.

      Thanks for sharing your insights and a little something about where you live.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Wonderfully said, Lori, and I agree. What we see on social media is often not reflected in daily, face-to-face interactions. I wish people wouldn’t feel so free to let loose on social media just because they’re not physically in front of the person. I think what we say online, we should be willing to say face-to-face. But since that’s often not the case, we have to remember that most often real life is what you just described. I wish people could translate it to their online interactions.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve seen the same thing for a while now. We’re supposed to be scared to walk down the streets and have people glare at us when we do, but it’s not true. A majority of people are kind and considerate and that gives me a great deal of hope for us.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. After seeing zillions of people at airports two Monday’s in a row, people, like you say, are just people. Many were kind too ne. Only saw one crazy lady, not me, for real. Lots of dogs traveling as well. They were better behaved than many of the children.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. The media wants us to believe we’re a divided country. If we shut off their noise and venture out among the real people, like you did, we see the truth.
    On a side note, I’ve never been able to write in public. I’m always eavesdropping and people watching. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hi Jill. I can’t write in public either. This was already written. I was proofreading and editing. And, as you can see, I was doing my share of eavesdropping an people watching anyway. 😛

      Liked by 1 person

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