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choose coffee.

capp.jpg7-11 has this new thing going on: 1,300 ways to make your coffee. Now, I donít know how they came up with that number (though I think someone at Fark actually did the math, but I canít find that link), but by the look on the faces of 7-11 coffee customers it must be right, because everyone looks dumbfounded. They hold their coffee cups in their hands and stare at all the choices and I guess their mind just canít comprehend the sea of flavors and toppings and their brain goes into lockdown.

Five different flavored coffees. Hot chocolate. Two flavors of cappuccino. Steamed milk. Vanilla syrup. Caramel syrup. Powdered chocolate and vanilla. Ten different flavors of cream. Marshmallows. Whipped cream. The steel counter is littered with packets of sugar and Equal and Sweet-n-Low and globs of chocolate syrup and latte foam. One can understand how some people - ordinary citizens like you and I - just went into 7-11 for a simple cup of coffee and got lost in the netherworld of choices. You can almost hear the buzzing in their heads. Hmmm...if I do a half cup of steamed milk and add some caramel syrup and maybe a little whipped cream...No, no....half cup of coffee and half hot chocolate. With powdered vanilla.

Do you want coffee or a three course dessert? Take the god damn coffee cup. Pour coffee. Pour milk. Put cover on. Leave. Why do you want to mix your coffee with all that crap? Itís 8am, people! Who the hell wants whipped cream and chocolate sauce at 8am? Coffee is not supposed to taste like it was made in a bakery. And if you want flavored coffee (ok, admittedly, I do go for those caramel frappucinos) then go to Starbucks, where people expect you to spend ten minutes pondering your choices while the snarly cashier taps her fingers on the counter waiting for you. Itís part of the ambience! At 7-11, youíre just crowding the aisles while Iím trying to get my regular coffee and a pack of gum.

Think! Think before you enter the store, folks! Do you want caramel? Do you want vanilla? Do you want chai tea with lemon or steamed milk with cinnamon? Just make.a.damn.decision. and get on with it, already.

There are just too many choices in this world. No one should be made to choose between more than A B or C for anything. No matter what you are buying - bread, tampons, garbage bags, vodka - there are so many different brands and styles and sizes of each that your brain can implode by just entering the grocery store. Do we really need to confuse people even more by turning their simple stop for morning coffee into a logic problem? No. Enough already. Iím making a stand for coffee flavored coffee. Say it with me....coffee flavored coffee!

"You can get every other flavor except coffee-flavored coffee! They got mochaccino, they got chocaccino, frappaccino, rappaccino, Al Pacino, what the fuck?!" - Denis Leary

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Comments

Funny you mention the 7-11 million coffee flavors, cuz just last night I discovered a pretty spectaclar Mint/Oreo cappucino from there. Good stuff.

I like havin' choices. But you're right: Not at 8 AM. At 8 AM they should just have a spout that dispenses sugared, milky coffee into my mouth, because I'm not even too confident in my pouring and cup-holding skills at that hour.

That choices issue is a biggie. A friend of mine grew up in Bombay, India, and his parents came over to visit him in Kentucky. It was the first time they'd been to the US. He took them to Oxmoor Mall in Louisville, and his mom didn't like it at all. Why? Too many choices. She felt overwhelmed. Same with the grocery store. She preferred her daily jaunt to the meat store, the veggie store, the bread store, the fabric store and the bazaar with their predictable offerings.

She was also disappointed that The Bombay Store had nothing from Bombay in it, but rather traditional English furniture. But that's another story.

Between the many possible roasts of a coffee, being a black coffee drinker is hard enough. Oh but the blessings of black coffee. I believe some other bloggers have written about this, but it sure does cut down on "choosing time."

have you ever checked out the canned foods section at a store? i mean REALLY looked? FIFTY kinds of peas! Green peas, sweet green peas, baby green peas, baby sweet peas, green baby sweet peas, baby sweet green peas, large baby peas... wtf?

"If you wanted cream and sugar, whyd'ya order coffee?"

The saddest part is that they probably charge more for ruining the coffee with all that crap.

"I taste the coffee - MAPLE SYRUP IN MY COFFEE!"

Sometimes, you just want a cup of f'ing coffee,

(On the other hand, I kind of like White Hen's hazelnut...)

"I just came in, and he started yelling at me, about 'coffee-flavored coffee', whatever the hell that is, and then he called me a 'haiku-writing motherfucker'! I'm glad he's dead."

Too funny!
When I was recovering from Pneumonia one time I decided I wanted Honey Bunches of Oats cereal and sent my husband to get it. About 1/2 later my H called and said he couldn't find it. I had a vision of a teeny little man in an aisle of 5000 boxes of cereal, gaping up towars the shelves like a cartoon.
Poor guy. He actually had to have a store employee help him find it.

I've lived in the central part of a city where I had no car, and the only food-source for me (aside from taking a 1/2 hour bus ride to the Kroger's and then back) was a tiny grocery with idiosyncratically-stocked shelves (generally, it seemed, reflecting the political whims of the owner: 'what corporation am I boycotting this week?')

I now have a car and live within easy distance of an Albertson's, a Kroger's, and a mega wal-mart, all with the dizzying array of choices you complain about.

I'll take the dizzying array of choices, thank you. It sucks having a jones for, say, Milano cookies, and finding out that the fool who runs the grocery store near you has decided that they are not on his list of Things Approved to be Sold.

Maybe 7-11 could get a drive-through coffee-IV center for the people who are grouches in the morning?

Well, think of it this way: if having too many choices is the biggest dilema you face in the morning, you're pretty darn blessed. There are enough people in the world whose only choice is to go without anything, never mind being baffled by a buffet of candy-flavored extras.

I don't want to turn this into a feces-flinging flurry again, but really, I wonder what goes on in the heads of people like Emily, when they express sentiments like hers. Is it to make me (or Michele for that matter) feel guilty? Feel more fortunate?

I'm just wondering out loud right here, and sorry Michele to use your space for this (though I believe the placement is appropriate) but... the kind of thought process involved in arriving at a statement that amounts to: "Think of the starving children in India" totally escapes my understanding.

I wondered the same thing, Jay. And you know what I thought? I thought "Piss off, Emily. Just because people are being oppressed in China does not mean I can't enjoy my daily fucking choice of gum."

Choices? I don't need no stinkin' choices. Not when it comes to coffee, at least. I like mine dark and bitter. Kind of like my personality.

Ech, anything but Starbucks. Seriously, though, if you want frilly coffee, that's why they invented good neighborhood coffee shops -- convenience stores are for coffee, plain, black, maybe some sugar packets and half-n-half available.

My mind locks up at "Regular or decaf?" -- and that's not just first thing in the morning.

I was thinking more of my step-mother's relatives who grew up in East Germany, where they had to stand in line for six hours to buy one roll of toilet paper, and the child-like looks on their faces the first time I took them to a grocery store in the US. I don't expect you to conjure images of fly-covered African children every time you chew a piece of gum, but I grew up pretty damn poor when I was a kid, and making decisions about what kind of cream we wanted in our coffee didn't bother any of us, because we weren't given the choice at all. And we didn't even have to go to India.

I live in the burbs and don't have time for the drive to S'bucks, so I am cool with the myriad of caffeinated beverage offerings at the 7-11 (which, in Northern Virginia, we have one every 50 yards). But yeah, mornings+decisions=trauma. I went in sleepy-eyed, left wide-eyed and terrified, clutching my (wouldn't it figure) regular roast with cream and Equal because they stopped stocking Sweet & Low in favor of four flavor pumps. Gaah! Too many choices/not enough choices -- I need (more) therapy!!!