By Jeff Becraft
On Tuesday, our grandson, Emerson Jeffrey, was born to Deanna and Josiah. We got the message from Josiah before 6:00 a.m. that they were getting ready to head to the hospital. Brenda and I thought we had plenty of time. Then we get a message at 9:45 a.m. that he was here!
So Brenda and I start scrambling to do a little of our final packing and we jump in the car. Brenda says that she would like to get a coffee. I respond, “We can just swing by the Starbucks on our way out.”
When I tell our daughter-in-law the following story, she says, “I didn’t know you spoke Starbucks-ese… You must have been trained by Hannah (our youngest daughter).”
My wife shook her head, “He doesn’t speak Starbucks-ese.” “No,” I added, “I just throw in a lot of variations.”
I am not a real coffee drinker. I am a flavored creamer drinker. And I didn’t use to drink coffee. The only time I ever drank coffee was either on a date with Brenda or on a road trip. Both were positive experiences and so I started drinking coffee (with a lot of flavored creamer) because it reminded me of Brenda.
Anyway, we pull up to the ordering speaker in the drive-thru and I started dropping my pseudo Starbucks-ese with all the variations to the girl. I have to repeat it three times (I guess because I’m not using the proper vocab). When we finally head towards the pick-up window, I say to my wife, “I know I made her day.”
When we get to the window, a different girl hands me two drinks through the window. Since I understand the nuances of all the variations, I had ordered for my wife as well… except mine had one more pump of mocha. The drinks look exactly alike. As I hand one to my wife, she says to the girl, “How do we know which one is which?” (Because when you are running a high variable offense at the drive-thru, the proper number of pumps is crucial.)
The girl responds, “It will say it on the label.” So my wife starts trying to read the label… but she doesn’t have her glasses with her. Plus, the label printer didn’t exactly do a picture-perfect job. Brenda finally says, “I can’t read it.”
So… I have already paid, the girl is still standing in the window, there are cars in line behind us (who I am sure all speak fluent Starbucks-ese), and the two grandparents are trying to figure out which drink belongs to who.
My reading glasses are hanging around my neck. I have one of the drinks in my right hand. Knowing that time is of the essence, I try to pull the glasses up on my face with my left hand. The croakie and left side of the glasses get caught on my chin. The right side of the glasses makes it up over my ear. The glasses are cockeyed on my face at about a 45-degree angle… but I can see through the right lens… kind of. Since time is of the essence, I figure I should take a shot at trying to read the label. No go.
The girl is still there leaning on the window sill and I finally say to her with a smile, “Well… we are grandparents today… and you’re looking at the future.”
So, regardless how today might be going, just keep in mind — your best days are ahead of you.
Jeff Becraft is the Executive Director for Youth Corps and has dedicated much of his life to helping shift the vision of people’s lives. Youth Corps is a life-changing leadership development experience that inspires high school students to be leaders in the Midlands and beyond. You can connect with Jeff at [email protected].