Coffee Spills

What I hear and see and think about at the coffee shops I patronize.
Brisk. Fresh. Well-balanced. Occasional nutty and bittersweet overtones.
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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Ruth's angel

It's always nice to be greeted by a cheery smile and hello at 6:15 a.m., and Ruth takes good care of her customers (guests is the word these days) at Panera's. This morning she handed me a little angel for my Christmas tree which she and her children made. Now isn't that a coffee sweetner!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

My left paw

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to write with your non-dominate hand on the black board, or any surface on which you raise your arm and don’t need to rest your hand? Teachers probably know that when teaching children to write. I figured that out in third grade I think. Thought I was terribly smart until I realized that the skill didn’t translate to the top of my desk.

I looked up at the fireplace hood at Panera’s December 1 and it was covered with dust. I had my left shoulder nearest the fireplace, so without even thinking I raised my left hand and effortlessly wrote, “Wash me.”

Paw dominance and color sense were two common questions when I was the veterinary medicine librarian at Ohio State. (The cat, sensing a cat topic, has just jumped into my lap.) Yes, cats have a paw preference:

“Cats have "paw dominance" similar to the right-handedness and left-handedness found. Owners will have noticed that some cats tend to prefer one paw over the other for manipulating objects while others use either paw. Studies indicate that 20% of cats are right-pawed; 38.3% of cats are left pawed and the remaining 41.7% are ambidextrous. Preferences are determined by the part of the brain called the sensorimotor cerebral cortex. Paw dominance is fixed and can be modified only slightly by environmental factors, such as convenience for reaching something.” Feline medical curiosities

You don't even want to know how they learned all that brain stuff about cats.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Can't use Sam Buck even if it's your name

Would you really get confused and go to Sam Buck's coffee shop if you were looking for Starbucks? Shame on big business and their trademark lawyers.

"A woman named Sam Buck opened a coffee shop in Astoria, Oregon in 2000, two years before a Starbucks opened down the road. She named her shop Sambuck's, and the judge in her case said that she willfully infringed on Starbucks's trademark in so doing." How about Starbucks infringing on her territory. Where are the anti-WalMart people who don't like the little guy being replaced by the giant? Well, they are having lattes at the local Starbucks.