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I like what you’ve done to the place

Caricature of Steve

“Holy cow, Beverly!  What have you done with the place?”  I exclaimed.

“Ditto tha!” John echoed as we uneasily approached our usual table.

“Just trying to shake things up a little,” Beverly explained smilingly.  “What can I do you for today?”

“Please, no more of that excrement-laced coffee you served last time,” John begged with hands in a praying gesture.

“Not one of our more popular offerings I agree,” Beverly conceded.

“I don’t know why,” I wondered, “but I’m a mood for something different.”

“Funny, I feel the same way, too, but I can’t put my finger on it,” John puzzled as he looked around the restaurant.

“I’ll think you’ll both like our Coffea Canephora  or Bugishu from Uganda,” Beverly suggested as she placed two tall, narrow, orange-colored cups before us.

“If I can’t pronounced it, I won’t drink it,” John waved away the Coffea Canephora.  “I’ll try the Bugishu.”

“Same for me,” I took my first sip as my mood brightened.  “Are these cups new?  They seem heavier, too.”

“Yes, thanks for noticing,” Beverly acknowledged. “Studies show that people prefer hot drinks from either chocolate or orange cups.”

“What happened to the white, plastic spoons?  I like these heavier, metal ones,” John asked.

That’s researched-based, too,” Beverly adopted an intellectual air. “Consumers experience higher-levels of gustatory satisfaction when using metal utensils.”

“I’m beginning to feel like a lab rat,” John glanced furtively around the room.

“Just enjoy the background music and new lighting,” I encouraged as I relaxed.  “It seems a little louder and a little brighter.” I waved sweetly to Beverly for a refill.

“Hm…the violet walls and abstract paintings are certainly a change from the old days,” John noted suspiciously.

“Yes, but I don’t miss the yellow walls and odd mixture of American Still Life and Wild West pictures,” I smiled as my attitude improved.

“So what do you think of our new atmosphere?” Beverly queried as she refilled our cups.

“I really like what you’ve done with the place,” I confirmed.  “Maybe it’s just the blend of coffee, but it certainly is a really rich black that has just the right flavor.”

“That’s part of the plan,” Beverly winked.

“You mean all these changes are designed…” John began.

“You got it, smart one.”  Beverly pulled up a chair, looked around, leaned forward and confided in a soft voice.  “It’s the new boss.  She’s studied hotel and restaurant management at some Midwest college and has all these new ideas.”

“You mean like…” John suggested

“Precisely,” Beverly leaned closer.  “The violet-colored walls test better on customers than yellow.”

“I have no complaints,” I smiled broadly.

“The louder music and bright lights encourage people to drink and eat more,” Beverly elaborated.

“Let me guess,” ventured John, “the abstract paintings…”

“Exactamundo,” Beverly nodded.  “The combination of pleasant music and pretty paintings enhances the dining mood,”

“I’ll drink to that,” I beamed giddily.

“So all of this is a plot to get us to drink and each more,” John suggested conspiratorially.

“I think that’s unfair, John,” I cautioned as I began to hum and sway to the background music.  “This is really nice.”

John and Beverly stare sternly.

“Beverly, I think I just better have the rest of this coffee to go,” John stands up getting ready to leave.

“I hear you, man.  But you may want to finish that in here before you leave,” Beverly cautioned again looking around.

“You mean…?”

“Yup. Once you leave here you may feel differently.”

“That’s all right, bro,” I intoned with my eyes half open as I entered a meditative state.  “I’ll pick up the tab.  And I  think I’ll even hang around for lunch.”

“Looks like you got one happy customer,” John gestured his head toward me.”

“If he leaves a good tip, he can stay as long as he wants.”  Leaning toward me, “How would you like a nice cinnamon roll on our new plates to go along with that cup of coffee?” Beverly encouraged.  “I think I can rustle up some yogurt that will please your taste buds, too.”

“Groovy…”

Steve Coon

July 01, 2013


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