drank a lot back then. I barely even remember working at Starbucks. It must have been almost 10 years ago. I drank whiskey before work, during work and after work. One of my supervisors, Leigh, drank more than I did. He was a total asshole and his breath always smelled like Guinness. He had a big, smelly beard and everyone hated him. Especially me. One time, we were helping customers, and there was a line stretching out the door. “Get me a fucking latte,” he yelled. “Fuck you,” I replied. All the businessmen in line looked nervous and pissed off. Leigh and I kept arguing until we dropped everything and tried to strangle each other to death. One of our co-workers had to pry us apart. Leigh apologized a few hours later, and I could tell by the way he looked at me that he meant it. I apologized back, but I slashed his bike tires the next day, just in case.
Starbucks was all I had.
One day when I came back from lunch, I walked into the back room and Arthur, the flamboyant senior citizen with a mustache, was snorting meth from an empty lip-balm container. He freaked out when he saw me and ran back out to the floor like nothing happened. Nobody cared that he was a tweaker because he was less depressing when he was high.
Starbucks was the best job I ever had. Nobody followed the dress code. It was like a slum inside of a store, complete with whores, junkies, drunks and thieves. I thought it was clever to take the Starbucks Coffee shirt and scratch out the letters so that it read “Fuck Off.” We ate all our food for free.
One day my boss sat me down in her office. “You’re a really good employee, Josh,” she said. I felt kind of bad because I wasn’t, but I took the compliment.
After several months of working there, I went out one night, got into a fistfight and ended up in jail. After two days of missing work, I called my boss.
“Josh, you’re going to have to come in and talk to me,” she said. She was crying.
“Can you just tell me what you’re going to say now? Because I can’t just walk out of here.”
“Just come in when you get out,” she said.
After I was fired, I got a new job as a dishwasher in a state building. I missed working at Starbucks, but I knew they would never hire me back.
Now I get paid way more to write. A couple weeks ago, I got a plain white envelope addressed from California State Controller John Chiang. Inside was a check for $125.96, from a class-action lawsuit that Starbucks lost because they mismanaged the way their tips were proportioned from October 2000 to February 2008.
I don’t even go to Starbucks anymore, I go to Peet’s. But I deposited my check and will probably spend it on something stupid. Sometimes I can’t even comprehend how ridiculous this world is.

scene-26483I drank a lot back then. I barely even remember working at Starbucks. It must have been almost 10 years ago. I drank whiskey before work, during work and after work. One of my supervisors, Leigh, drank more than I did. He was a total asshole and his breath always smelled like Guinness. He had a big, smelly beard and everyone hated him. Especially me. One time, we were helping customers, and there was a line stretching out the door. “Get me a fucking latte,” he yelled. “Fuck you,” I replied. All the businessmen in line looked nervous and pissed off. Leigh and I kept arguing until we dropped everything and tried to strangle each other to death. One of our co-workers had to pry us apart. Leigh apologized a few hours later, and I could tell by the way he looked at me that he meant it. I apologized back, but I slashed his bike tires the next day, just in case.

Starbucks was all I had.

One day when I came back from lunch, I walked into the back room and Arthur, the flamboyant senior citizen with a mustache, was snorting meth from an empty lip-balm container. He freaked out when he saw me and ran back out to the floor like nothing happened. Nobody cared that he was a tweaker because he was less depressing when he was high.

Starbucks was the best job I ever had. Nobody followed the dress code. It was like a slum inside of a store, complete with whores, junkies, drunks and thieves. I thought it was clever to take the Starbucks Coffee shirt and scratch out the letters so that it read “Fuck Off.” We ate all our food for free.

One day my boss sat me down in her office. “You’re a really good employee, Josh,” she said. I felt kind of bad because I wasn’t, but I took the compliment.

After several months of working there, I went out one night, got into a fistfight and ended up in jail. After two days of missing work, I called my boss.

“Josh, you’re going to have to come in and talk to me,” she said. She was crying.

“Can you just tell me what you’re going to say now? Because I can’t just walk out of here.”

“Just come in when you get out,” she said.

After I was fired, I got a new job as a dishwasher in a state building. I missed working at Starbucks, but I knew they would never hire me back.

Now I get paid way more to write. A couple weeks ago, I got a plain white envelope addressed from California State Controller John Chiang. Inside was a check for $125.96, from a class-action lawsuit that Starbucks lost because they mismanaged the way their tips were proportioned from October 2000 to February 2008.

I don’t even go to Starbucks anymore, I go to Peet’s. But I deposited my check and will probably spend it on something stupid. Sometimes I can’t even comprehend how ridiculous this world is.

Comments

  1. Hanif says:

    This was a heartwarming story, Josh, and it reminded me of my starbucks days, which actually weren’t that long ago. I got the job as a joke, and quit once the joke wasn’t funny anymore. Now I don’t get paid anything to write, and have considered going back to Starbucks. I applied and then didn’t call me back. Bitches.

  2. Ha! I don’t think they would ever hire me again, either. We’re above Starbucks, man.

  3. Yanz says:

    The world would be less interesting place to be without you. You would’ve totally fit in working at Tower Records back in its heyday.

  4. Crystal says:

    I worked at Starbucks, too, and my boss was a bitch. She wrote me up for being late. I was late again after that, so I quit before she could fire me. It was a little awkward.

  5. Ben Edge says:

    Good story. It’s like a Kevin Smith movie, except it’s actually funny.

  6. melanie d. says:

    when they first furloughed us i almost got a second job at starbucks. i actually applied and never heard back. i’m old and overqualified. but mostly i’m old.

  7. Hey Ben, are you a straight edge dude? I want to interview straight-edge people for a story I’m doing. It’s on, um, straight edge people.

  8. Carly says:

    Didn’t you become a driver for that really mean blind guy after sb’s?

  9. He was the owner of the state building cafeteria. I had to drive him around and stuff. He was a complete cock.

  10. Gabe Corrie says:

    The legend of Josh Fernandez grows. I love this story.

    “Starbucks was all I had.”

    “I don’t even go to Starbucks anymore, I go to Peet’s.”
    —————————-
    Good stuff!

  11. Josh you got see this video”Monoculture”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhDkEX8Qn6s
    from one of my favorite British “post-punk” era artists, Mark Almond of Soft Cell. Alomond apparently shows here doesn’t have to worry about support from the American fast food industry, and its utter stupidy “It’s insane.. its the same thing again and again, again and again..”
    I work right now for a vegan raw and living right now, and people think I’m insane for eating that way even though they suffer from diseases including obsesity from what they eat.

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