Sunday afternoon, 12:21 p.m.
I’m waving goodbye to the parents, who had come to visit me and also to see the Great Forest Park Balloon race, which happens right across the street from my apartment.
I’m worn out – my parents stay up late and wake up early – and in desperate need of a nap.
I’m also in desperate need of new shoes. Well, not need, but desire. Wanton lust, if you will. Apparently Dillard’s in a nearby mall was going out of business, and everything was on sale. So I trekked the 15 mins to the
part of town where the white folks feel safe suburbs, and left 10 minutes later with one pair of cute Calvin Klein socks and one measley (but hot) pair of Steve Maddens.
I’m feeling shopping defeat, but know that I can rebound at Barnes and Noble. I’ve just recently finished the Golden Compass by Philip Pullman, which started out slow but proved to be FANTASTIC, and wanted to pick up it’s sequel The Subtle Knife. Also, this book called “Confessions of a Prep School Mommy Handler” that is supposedly based on real events here in St. Louis and is creating quite a stir in the “better than you” circles sounded blasphemous and fun, so I figured I’d get both.
I arrive at
Starbucks Barnes & Noble and there, on the door, beckoning to me like Bali Ha’i, was a small poster for Pumpkin Spice Lattes.
This was bad. So many attempts have been made by me to buy local. The coffee is usually fresher, tastier, and I’m supporting businesses in the city I love.
But there is NOTHING tastier than a Pumpkin Spice Latte.
I got my books, and began marching toward the door, hoping to resist the urge.
Then SHE walked by. A 20something WASP toting a miserable looking baby in a backpack and armed with a pumpkin spice latte. I caved. I couldn’t resist. I succumbed to my desire.
“Yes, I’ll have it with whipped cream and whole milk” I muttered.
230 calories later (because I was only halfway through it), I was on the way to Goodwill to finish up my shopping. I needed some frisky winter coats, and I knew Goodwill would not let me down.
I’m walking up the sidewalk toward the store, with fantasies of worn jean jackets and weathered leather dancing in my head, when I’m approached by a homeless person.
Sidenote – as any longtime reader may know – I love the homeless. One in particular – Catfish – helped me get home during a drunken night a long long time ago, and I’ve never forgotten it. Yes, it’s annoying to be asked for 74¢ for bus fare, but it would be really annoying to me to sleep on the street, so it’s the least I can do. Rant over.
“Sir, can you spare 88¢ for a donut please?” he says.
“Sure, I’ve actually got a five here. Get a whole meal if you can,” I said, and put down the remainder of my latte to get my wallet out.
“Starbucks, huh? You don’t like Cartel, or Coffee Oasis?” the man said to me.
“What? For real? I really like Cartel and Oasis far better, as a matter of fact, but I was running errands, and this latte sounded really good because it’s fall-ish and pumpkiny and such,” I reply.
“Hmph. Those assholes at Starbucks never give any of us leftovers. Cartel and Oasis, they’re alright. You’re a sell-out!” he said.
I sold my soul to Starbucks and all I got was this delicious, delicious pumpkin spice latte.