Jim Nelson, an office worker in Farringdon, decided against placing his usual Starbucks order of creamy Mocha Hazelnut Frappuccino plus a giant Smarties cookie as part of a desperate attempt to impress the coffee shop’s new 23-year-old employee whom he described as ‘the heart-stopping girl of my dreams’.
Entranced by her deep brown eyes and glacial beauty as she disdainfully called out requests for Apple Chai infusions with whipped cream, Nelson considered that his chances for developing a lasting relationship with the woman hung on this first order.
‘My immediate thought was to play safe with a Latte,’ explained the 27-year-old single man, ‘but faint heart and all that… So I figured a Grande Cappuccino would look a bit more hip and retro.’
However the Cappuccino decision was overturned by his brain as he admired her lustrous dark hair and pondered whether she may actually have Italian heritage. ‘I was trying to remember the rule they have in Italy – is it no cappuccino before lunch, or after lunch?’ he explained. ‘It was a coffee etiquette minefield.’
Finally, inspiration struck as Nelson settled on a ‘sophisticated but still masculine’ single espresso to be accompanied by almond biscotti. Carrot cake had been ruled out as ‘potentially effeminate’ and he was unsure that in the time allotted for his beverage transaction he could effectively get across the idea that he was having the double chocolate cake because he was really hungry after one of his regular gym workouts.
Finally reaching the front of the line, Nelson was pleased that he managed to complete his order successfully – improvising at the last minute to demonstrate his caring nature by ensuring the coffee was Fair Trade – before paying for his drink with a £20 note rather than the pile of 20ps he’d been intending to use.
The euphoric feelings engendered by the warm smile he received from the attractive Starbucks employee were only slightly marred by his blurting out ‘I love you!’ as she asked for his name for the cup, and directed him towards the milk and sugar.