I’ve always been a people-watcher. That’s why I became a writer — I am fascinated by people and their stories. I make my living writing for magazines and companies, and my office is Starbucks. I arrive every morning at one of the coffee shops between 8 or 9, order a tall pike, and begin writing, researching or making phone calls for whatever project I am working on. I generally work at two different Starbucks on any given day, and eight to 10 different Starbucks in any given week. In any given year, I spend 2,000 hours in Starbucks.
As a fly-on-the-wall, I see and meet many people who treat Starbucks as their office.
- Wedding photographers consulting with clients.
- A professional poker player logging online and playing seven-card stud for cash.
- A porn star discussing how to shoot a scene in a graveyard with her cinematographer.
- Telemarketers looking for clients.
- A quack medical doctor who performs physical examinations at the center table and writes prescriptions.
I meet many people who treat Starbucks as their living room, bedroom, or confessional.
- A woman pondering how to steal back her ex-boyfriend from his fiancee who he plans to wed in a week.
- A guitarist for one of most famous rock bands puzzling over the fan who tattooed an image of the group’s album covers on his chest.
- A woman, eight months pregnant, assembling her 12-step list.
- A man, listening quietly to strangers debate personal responsibility, breaks into their conversation to tell them he murdered a man and then failed in an attempt to kill himself.
This blog is about the people I encounter everyday in different Starbucks — their dreams, their fears, their pain, and their triumph — and what their stories tell us about life today.