I found out about it when I mistakenly grabbed someone else’s mobile order, thinking it was my regular Americano, and discovered the White-Privilege latte: blond roast coffee beans, foamed white macadamia milk with a hint of white sugar, in an all-white cup with the Starbucks logo in blond rather than green. Ugh, I like stuff that is robust. When I complained to the barista that I needed something really strong to counteract the cloying taste in my mouth, she leaned really close and asked, “how strong do you like it?” Hoping that her question was sexual innuendo rather than customer service, I shot back, “how strong can you make it?” while trying to roll my eyes, but I also lost my balance and reached out to grab her hand, as she pulled me close and whispered throatily, “have you heard of our secret drink menu? You have to say the magic word, Berkeley, and that gives me access to a secret room where we make the woke drinks.”
Recovering my balance, if not my composure and dignity, I asked in my most assertive voice, “what do you recommend?” She said, “if you can really handle super dark, I recommend the Black-Lives-Matter mocha. It’s 85% cacao dark syrup, in a cup of Ethiopia Sidamo French Roast, with foamed chocolate milk, in a brown cup with the Starbucks logo in black. Very classy.” As she led me through the secret portal, I was tempted to say, “you’re not so bad yourself” but just then another customer who was already in the secret menu room ordered a #MeTo-Mocha Frappuccino, while eyeing me suspiciously, and that put an end to my fantasy. All around the room were posters of the woke menu drinks: Get-The-Blue-Out-of-Here blueberry lemonade, made with albino “blueberries” and off limits to police, Transgender Chai-Creme Frappuccino, Pinkberri-Soccer-Matcha tea latte, intended to honor Megan Rapinoe (free to anyone who can produce LGBTQ credentials and pink-purple hair), and the actual drink that inspired the whole menu, the Tie-Dye Holdover-Hippie Frappuccino, in both adult and child strengths.
I went with the Black-Lives-Matter mocha. Just as I was about to raise my cup, a mob of 40+ teenagers–that’s in number, not age nor maturity–rampage into the store, having just looted and vandalized the Walgreens across the street, with an Antifa vanguard shoving the Starbucks customers out of the way. I spilled my boiling hot mocha all over the woman with the #MeTo-Mocha-Frappuccino, prompting a roundhouse slap to my right eye, knocking my glasses off, into a vat of Frappuccino syrup. The store manager rushed over, asking the Antifa leader if he needed a witness, in case he wanted to sue me for being in the way (but he moaned that he was late for dinner at mommy’s house). She also offered me a coupon for a free Starbucks training called How to Tell the Disabled From the Merely Clumsy.
Having lost both my glasses and my cane in the melee, I was in no mood. Fortunately, before I made a nasty remark, I woke up. Remind me not to drink a tie-dye Frap before bed again.