The following images were captured at the Starbucks a few blocks from my pop’s place where the “Beach” dives into a cinder block wall. Lots of interesting people congregate here and I have enjoyed the environment as well as the patrons (though they need more wall sockets!). Generally, I prefer to frequent locally owned and operated establishments. However, where the options don’t exist I will patronize Starbucks, Peet’s, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, etc. Unlike other types of chains I do appreciate the fact that coffee shops, regardless of ownership, foster a very healthy environment for locals and visitors alike to socialize on a level that had nearly disappeared from the American social landscape, save for college towns and main streets, for roughly two decades. It should also be remembered that virtually every corporate coffee shop (as well as nearly every other type of franchise) started out as a small local business. The American entrepreneurial spirit was born in the mom & pop’s, the main streets, the back alleys… There is room for both but without the roots there are never any trunks, branches, leaves, or growth of any kind. Respect is a two way street. I’ll take mine with a lump of sugar sans cream, thank you.
Much thanks to all of my willing subjects.