Starbucks Log: Welcoming Longer Days

The days are getting longer. Have you noticed? There’s already a deep azure at 6:30 AM. Hope for a new day is already surfacing.

People have held on to whatever they could to make it through these past two months. Mostly other people I suppose. Or a getaway dream. Or a new stay-around dream.

I detect slight movements around people’s mouths. A softening of sorts. Pursed lips relax. And how beautiful is that?


And the guy at Starbuck’s spots me a coffee because I forgot my wallet, a regular happening when I change coats.

The Italian roast goes to work. Fueling my two hour sabbatical.

An older gentleman is talking about meditation with the hostess. He has a word.

I decide to buy Bob Dylan’s Live at the Gaslight. 1962. Still can’t get enough of a "Hard Rain."

Who remembers 1962? Well I do. Mrs. Pinder was my teacher and she took delight in chiding me in front of the class for being the last one to learn the alphabet. And no, that wasn’t Junior high.

Well, I gave back. Signs of early rebellion. Her back to the class, arm raised to the blackboard, with heavy folds of bicep-flesh hanging loose from the right sleeve of her print dress, I would imitate her fleshy movements by waving my hand under my upraised arm. The kids laughed and I spent an hour in the cloakroom.

I had a few cloakroom timeouts. I find "cloakroom" an interesting word. Think of the things you can get away with in a room with that name.


When I look back, it was Mrs. Pinder that inspired in me a disaffected desire to get my letters in some kind of order. It’s her I continue to hope to prove wrong about my non-facility with the alphabet.

Maybe it’s time to move on. Maybe I’m still building myself against, and therefore on, a negative set of experiences. Maybe, unless I let this go, keep letting this go, I can’t rise above a mirror image of what it is I’m defining my dreams, my hopes, my "self" against.

Sun’s up. Time to move on and welcome the longer days.

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  1. I’m working on my new book – “Learning at the feet of the televangelists.” These men, I feel, are larger than life, David-like characters with big hearts for God and soft feet of clay. Too often we fail to learn from the signposts of mercy their public stories provide . Interestingly, in chapter 49 of my new book, I’ve included some references to “letting go”, particularly in the case of Jimmy Swaggart, who struggled with his own “Mrs. Pinder”. But Jimmy’s “against” had nothing to do with spelling, instead, to protect his and others’ purity, the erudite southern gentleman avoided public swimming, seeking out secluded beaches where he could bathe temptation free. Sadly, his later lapses highlight the dangers of defining oneself “against”, particularly in relation to social mores. Perhaps if Jimmy could have stepped out into that public pool and exposed himself to the larger world, he might have avoided those cloakrooms that became so troublesome. Thanks for reminding us of this valuable lesson.

  2. From my research for my book, “Learning at the feet of the televangelists,” I’ve found that public swimming is only engaged in by 3.2 per cent of the TV preachers. Reasons given: bad for the hair-style. Ernest Angley, it’s been reported, elected to briefly attend an Anglican church in order to avoid full immersion baptism. Still, even with that he wasn’t able to guest host for Jack Van Impe because the sprinkling caused “unnatural” frizziness. Hats off to our tireless evangelists. Like Samson of old, these men will stop at nothing to keep their spiritual edge.

  3. What!!?? The guy at starbucks fronted you a coffee?? you totally shoudve just taken it, yelled out “sucker!!”, and bolted outta there!! Of coarse, then you wouldve realized you forgot to add cream and sugar… (scratch that, just cream if i remeber correctly..) and possibly your hat at the front counter… hehehe…Cant help but think im ripping off a simpsons episode but…
    Last to learn the alphabet eh?? You KNOW youll never hear the end of this one eh Dad?? Especially when your now using words like “azure”… why cant you just say “blue” like the rest of us… i mean, ok, we get it, you own a thesaurus… hehehe…
    Seriously though, i liked the article.. the Ms. Pinder reference especially… I think we all have some sorta Ms. Pinder memory… whether its folds of bicep flesh hanging, or coffee breath stinking, or saliva mist spraying, or cigarette stench offending.. they all touched us in one way or another.. (Ill resist the urge to make a cloakroom joke here…lol)
    I miss you Dad, the comedy, the blues jams, the salmon.. still not sure how you cooked it so perfect… my guess is rare, cause out here im hooked on raw when it comes to fish… little wasabi and ginger… soooo good… cant believe its actually good for you…
    Anyway, hope your well, have you seen my space lately?? if not, lots of pics of me and aya now…

    Love you Dad…


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