In a montage showing the hustle of a regular, crisp, autumn morning we see the two main characters making their way to the source of their daily cup of coffee goodness. Then we see the actual place, which is Starbucks, and we witness each character getting its coffee. One of them has a monologue in which describes how places like Starbucks give a sense of wellbeing to people, beyond its enjoyable drinks and atmosphere and more in terms of the fact that it gives confused people the chance to make a number a quick decisions, hinting here at the variety of ways you can have a drink there. Maybe also hinting at how we have come to complicate the experience of enjoying a good cup of coffee, by making it not taste like coffee at all or very little, by adding all sorts of flavors to it. I am guilty of that too. Coffee is one of my favorite drinks and I do usually drink it with just a splash of milk and a bit of sugar, but going to Starbucks just absolutely requires getting a “pimped out” large cup of coffee, with whatever flavor the season dictates.
It is undeniable that coffee is a good enough reason for people to get together for a catch up and coffee shops are a popular place amongst writers, but not limited to them, to get their work done. Coffee is one of those must-do things in the morning like brushing your teeth or having breakfast. Also, romances blossom over a cup of coffee and friendships grow stronger. Or at least that’s what movies tell us. Coffee and coffee shops tend to appear very often in movies and at times they tend to be used for a bit more than just a drink to talk over to or décor.
At the beginning I was referring to a scene from the lovely movie “You’ve got mail”. Coffee is a “character” in some important scenes in the movie: for example when Joe goes to meet his pen pal at a coffee shop, does not know at first it is Kathleen, but then he figures it out and he proceeds to sort of mock her about how her alleged date did not appear for the actual date, him having the advantage of knowing who he was chatting to online. In the scene about Starbucks, the cynical businessman Joe Fox (F-O-X) says the following words that might offer quite the insight:
“The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc. So people who don’t know what the hell they’re doing or who on earth they are can, for only $2.95, get not just a cup of coffee but an absolutely defining sense of self: Tall. Decaf. Cappuccino.” – You’ve Got Mail (1998) – Joe Fox (Tom Hanks)
The TV series “Friends” is a must mention here as the characters spend lots of time at the “Central Perk” café which is as famous as Rachel and Monica’s apartment. That’s where Rachel got her first job, where Phoebe has her mini concerts and where some other important things happen. Basically, “Central Perk” is the café where we would all want to hang out with a cup of coffee or tea in hand.
Also, who can forget the iconic scene from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” where Holly goes, early in the morning, elegantly dressed, with pastry in one hand and coffee, in a random cup, in the other hand and enjoys both of them while window shopping at the Tiffany store in New York.
It is undeniable that coffee can be a major character or play a significant role whether it is shown in movies or enjoyed in day to day life. One cup of coffee can give you the extra boost you might need in an otherwise busy day, or maybe its magnificent aroma can be the one thing that brightens your morning or mood or it can be the only and right reason to ask your crush or your best friend out. No matter how you choose to take your coffee or with whom, do not forget to enjoy every sip just as you enjoy one of your favorite movies hanging on to every word a favorite character might say and letting yourself be drawn to its attraction (no matter the time of day if you ask me). Just stop once in a while from your rush to whatever you might want to get and smell and drink the coffee before it gets cold.
In real life, things might not always be as they are in movies and you can’t almost always expect a happy ending and expect for things to fit right back into place, for the guy to get the girl in the end in a highly romantic and emotional scene in a beautiful setting as is the ending of “You’ve got mail” although that does not stop us girls from dreaming. In real life, happiness is in the little things. Little things like going out on a walk on a sunny afternoon or a snowy day, going into your favorite cozy place in town where, as soon as you get in, a familiar feeling hits you: the smell of freshly made coffee and spices, waiting to enrich the experience and awaken your senses as you find your way to a comfy seat at a table and look around witnessing the movie of everyday life unfold in front of your wondering eyes, one sip at a time.
What are your small pleasures in life?