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My Lawsuit Against Starbucks

I've been nosing around the Web looking for evidence that Starbucks, with its "Life's Better On the Porch" ad campaign, shamelessly stole the whole idea from the Achenblog. Because then I can sue the pants off of them. Millions of dollars. Free coffee. AND I want them to throw in free T-mobile wireless access so i can blog while drinking the comped java.

You have to understand that porching is what this blog would be famous for were it to have ever developed into something with more than a few dozen readers. Life's-better-on-the-porch is as close as we've ever gotten to a central organizing principle. To a theme. A gimmick, to use the Schemer's word. [I will add links later today to prove that the porch concept is our intellectual property here on the Ablog.]

Moreover, as I creep toward 50 I sense that the creative, productive, and society-enhancing portion of my career is coming to a close, and that I need to get ready for the next big phase, which is suing people.

Sue them coming and sue them going. Sue them eight ways from Sunday. Make them rue the day they ever crossed my path or dared to open a business whose doors I choose to darken.

You call it frivolous, I call it fun! This could be the hobby I've always dreamed of. Also I wouldn't mind getting some of the money back that I've deposited over the years at Starbucks.

Fact is, I'm in a Starbucks right now! Though a big fan of Java House, and warming to Caribou, I think my palate still finds the Starbucks brew to be the most agreeable. But the soullessness of most Starbucks coffee shops (what do you call them? Is the correct term "Starbuckses"?) is a drag. As you know, I abhor and abominate the condiment station. [Any excuse to say "abominate."] And apparently there are many people who are concerned about Starbucks soullessness.

Note that the link includes an excerpt from an email from Starbucks boss Howard Schultz:

"Clearly we have had to streamline store design to gain efficiencies of scale...However, one of the results has been stores that no longer have the soul of the past and reflect a chain of stores vs. the warm feeling of a neighborhood store. Some people even call our stores sterile, cookie cutter, no longer reflecting the passion our partners feel about our coffee."

Howard, they're horrible. Except the one I'm in now, which is anomalously excellent, to the point that I'm not willing to reveal its location lest the masses show up. [Do we still have "the masses" or is there a new term?]

Calling lawyers now. Will send updates.


Do you ever wonder what happens to the ash and debris of a fireworks show? Where the charred bits of fireworks casing and the glowing embers wind up? I can now tell you: On my head. And in my eyes. Last night we were directly under the explosions, on Constitution Avenue near 18th Street. It was the fallout zone. Shmutz rained from the sky for 20 minutes. I don't know what kind of magnesium and cadmium and uranium and Californium and whatnot goes into those rockets, but I hope it's not toxic. [Or maybe I should follow Boswell's advice, claim I'm sick, and go watch Tiger!!]


Rick Hertzberg throws some love to the Gellman/Becker series. (But in praising the Post series, can't the New Yorker take the next huge technological leap and add an actual link to it? Or does the New Yorker abjure linking to other publications?) [Any excuse to use "abjure."]

'Given the ontological authority that the Post shares only with the New York Times, it is now, so to speak, official: for the past six years, Dick Cheney, the occupant of what John Adams called "the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived," has been the most influential public official in the country, not necessarily excluding President Bush, and his influence has been entirely malign. He is pathologically (but purposefully) secretive; treacherous toward colleagues; coldly manipulative of the callow, lazy, and ignorant President he serves; contemptuous of public opinion; and dismissive not only of international law (a fairly standard attitude for conservatives of his stripe) but also of the very idea that the Constitution and laws of the United States, including laws signed by his nominal superior, can be construed to limit the power of the executive to take any action that can plausibly be classified as part of an endless, endlessly expandable "war on terror." '

By Joel Achenbach  |  July 5, 2007; 8:38 AM ET
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