While walking the dog one night last week, Mrs. Curmudgeon asked her husband if he had any money on him. This request was without precedent: in more than two-and-a-half years of walking the dog together in the evening, neither The Curmudgeon nor his wife had ever made an unplanned stop at a local store. Well, rules are made to be broken, and on this particular evening Mrs. Curmudgeon said she had a sudden urge for a spiced pumpkin latte from the neighborhood Starbucks.

Mrs. C. loves her pumpkin.

When the couple came to the store The Curmudgeon handed his wife a five-dollar bill and jokingly asked if it would be enough; while The Curmudgeon doesn’t drink coffee, Starbucks’ exorbitant prices are legendary. Mrs. Curmudgeon laughed as she took the money; her husband made a pointed remark about expecting the change when she returned.   Mrs. Curmudgeon handed the leash to her husband, which was a big deal; The Curmudgeon normally only holds the leash when Mrs. Curmudgeon is cleaning up the dog’s… business.

So The Curmudgeon was waiting outside the store, trying unsuccessfully to teach the dog to sit, when Mrs. Curmudgeon came bounding through the door – well, as close as she comes to bounding. Mrs. Curmudgeon is many things but a bounder she is not.

“I need eighteen cents,” she exclaimed. The Curmudgeon reached into his pocket and retrieved a quarter.

A minute later Mrs. Curmudgeon returned, with an explanation:

“Almond milk costs thirty cents extra.”

As far as The Curmudgeon is concerned, that was no explanation at all.


Makes perfect sense, right?

And it wasn’t even a big cup of coffee, either: it was a “tall” – which, in the bizarro world of Starbucks, means small.

And the rest of the way home The Curmudgeon kept shaking his head and saying


He doesn’t understand how or why you people tolerate that, but he knows the Starbucks people are getting a pretty big laugh at your expense.

And on that particular evening, at The Curmudgeon’s expense as well.

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  • Scott  On November 2, 2017 at 8:10 am

    I find the use of the famed ‘Starbucks Card’ has rendered me oblivious to the ridiculous cost of a SB cup of coffee. My card, when the balance drops below the minimum, is automatically reloaded, in one, painless swoop. Ignorance is bliss?

    But, for those who only use cash….good news! Rumor has it that Starbucks will be getting into the check cashing / gold exchange business. A grande latte and chorizo breakfast sandwich will be a mere 14K bracelet away.

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