Back to Coffee Shops

I am back in the land of *PROPER COFFEE SHOPS*, and I am in love.

I am also curled up in a corner, on a tweed love-seat, sipping cold brew.

It’s not even the little things, so much. It’s more of a…hallmark of a certain lifestyle.

I think I may have officially come to the conclusion that NEVER AGAIN will I choose to live in a town with no coffee shops.

No megusta.

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Hipstercritical

I have (once again,) gotten a new job.

(Seriously. I cannot *wait* until I get to go more than a month without saying that.

Or being put in a position where I’ll potentially have to say it in the future.

I would really like to be a little bit *less* brushed up on the finding jobs within the current market. Really. A lot.)

 

This one is a bit different though, in the way that…I am a hipster.

Part of my hipster identity is the reflexive shunning of corporate coffee. I have pretty much always been the one saying horrifying obnoxious bullshit like “Why are there no local coffee shops around here?”

As one can tell from the entire fucking tag I have of ‘coffee shop living’.

And here, now, internet, I tell you:

I eat my words.

I take it back.

 

 

Welcome to Starbucks.

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Mild Fire

At the risk of sounding like a bit of a pyromaniac… I like fire.

In the way that I’m really quite good at building them, tending them, I know…probably quite a bit more than average about fire safety.

I just really like fire.

Sometimes I see things though, that I find to be a bit confusing, like this:

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Like. I don’t really want to be mean about this, but like,

What the hell is “MILD” FIRE?

Like. That shit is *burning*.  By definition.

I’m pretty sure there is…not a lot of fire out there that can be described as “mild”.

(Unless you’re thinking “deceptively mild”, because people look at a good cooking fire, and think ‘It’s not that hot anymore’, weirdly forgetting that it’s still fire, and will still  burn the fuck out of you if you touch it. Seriously. People. Why do we do this?)

A New Awakening

This morning I woke up to a job.

In the way that I got a call from a guy who said “Hey. Can you come to this cafe today? If you can, I’ll give you the weekend shift.”

To which I replied, “Okay! I’m on my way!”

So, now I have a job at a coffee shop again! Yes!!!

But, it’s only on weekends, so I can continue doing my whole “starving artist” thing during the weeks. Who has a follow-up audition for an awesome 80’s synth-pop project? This kid!

(This also pleases me, because I’m trying to build a portfolio to possibly apply to art school with, and there’s just something utterly satisfying about the complete and total fulfillment of a cliche that is a wannabe art student/actress who works weekends at a coffee shop. Remember that part where I’m somehow managing to out-hipster the universe? I promise I don’t…mean to be the truest living embodiment of Portlandia. It just….ends up that way.)

Also, today I got to try goat curry.

I don’t think I’ve ever had goat before. It’s really super good.

Om nom nom!

Interviews and a Date

Today I had two job interviews in the city. (In the afternoon. Breakfast was a bit small this morning, but I’ve got everything set up for it to be totally awesome to infinity and BEYOND!!! (Oh, wait. Is that something else?))

The first was another sales position. I’m a bit shy of throwing myself into another sales job, as my last work for as a charity predator was…really not awesome. I think maybe it would be a lot different selling an actual product though.

Also, paintball is fucking awesome. So. There’s that.

I also managed to spectacularly suck at an interview for a part-time shift for a barista gig downtown. The exact terminology of this position was “Milk Texturer” which, seriously…that’s freaking weird.

“What do you do for a living?”

“Oh, I texture milk!”

What?

So I kind of totally sucked at the job interview for the weirdly-labelled job. I mean, it’s a lot less important now than it was this time two days ago, but I don’t want to just write off all other options. It’s always hard, too, when you totally screw up an interview.

 

As a pick-me-up after an afternoon of job interviews (because even when they go well, it’s freaking stressful.) I decided to take myself on a date. I went to the Australian Centre for Moving Images, which was running a spectacular exhibit on the history of the music video.

I think a lot of folks associate music videos with being a really new form of media, kind of correlating the beginning of music videos with the age of MTV. This exhibit when way before that, it had short films that used to be shown before feature-length movies that also happen to be some of the only surviving footage of jazz greats from the depression. There were even animations from before video was available that contained the lyrics of classic songs from the times.

There was an entire wall that was dedicated to viral videos and how they have impacted global culture. It was a huge grid that would play all of these different clips of videos that had gone viral. It would play maybe 30 different takes on people recreating Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” and Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know”. It discussed videos that were built for online interaction and videos that were practically movies. There were examples of the surrealism often found in music videos as well as music videos as art pieces. There were music videos known for being groundbreaking, artistic, and whimsical.

I stayed until the museum closed. I have notes for a youtube playlist of music videos I want to see again that’s just about as long as my arm. I can’t wait to put that together.

 

(I’ll put a link here when I’m done with it.)

 

Coffee Shop…coffee…

Today I began training on how to use one of the giant, vaguely terrifying, does-everything-in-one-giant-freakishly-expensive-machine, coffee maker.

I have a list of coffee drinks that are on the menu, with copious notes taken about the differences between each one. I figure it might be easier to keep track of them if I actually drank coffee, but I’m just irreversibly a tea drinker, so I’ll just do it the hard way. (Though I’m not the only one learning the coffee machine, and every time we make one that isn’t quite at the level to be able to serve to a customer, the staff get dibs on it, so if we keep up at the rate we went today, I might very well acquire a taste for coffee, because there was a rather a lot of it being passed around today.)

Additionally, things have different names here in Australia than what I’m used to from the States. A “flat white” or “long black” aren’t names that would appear on a menu in the U.S.

I’m learning about milk-steaming techniques, and how to draw foam designs.

I know I’ll have graduated from coffee-making school when I can draw a unicorn in a latte. (And I hereby promise to post that picture when  I make that happen. Oh yeah!)

Coffee Shop Living

I started my new job today. This one feels a lot more right then the last one. Working as part of a street team always felt…a little bit dirty and far more predatory than I was comfortable with.

Now  I work in a cafe. My job is keeping folks happy and fed, and that is something that has long since become a part of my self-identity. I love making food and being able to share it with other people. Cooking is such a huge culture, and this one is one that I feel like I understand on the level of instinct.

In the back we crank up the radio and dance as we wash dishes. In the front we chat with patrons and each other. It’s all about smiling and food.

I don’t think I’ve ever been in such an international crew before. The head barista, Timothy Jones, is Australian. There was a girl named Leah from “near the Black Forest” in Germany, a girl named Zam who’s from London (I was super excited to meet her, because I found out I’ve reached the point where I’m able to place the different accents from around the U.K. Go me!) The sous-chef is a man named Keith who speaks four languages and is originally from Malaysia. There’s a girl named Amanda who’s from Zimbabwe, and a boy named Kahn (which, okay, yeah, probably isn’t *actually* spelled that way, but my Trekkie heart will spell it that way until directly corrected.) and two Muhamads; one from Iran and one from Lebanon. I’m the North American representative rounding it out.

It’s amazing food, and amazing people, and I’m so excited to be there.