Years ago, I categorized a nearby automated store as unusual art on display (part I of this article explains why). An odd structure to be pondered from a distance and expect nothing functional in return. I was ok with this arrangement for some time. Then, one day, I set out for work and forgot…COFFEE!
Walking to my office in a caffeine-free fit of stomping irrationality, I reach the ever-present automated store. Its shelves are as bare as all days before with lighting harsh enough to see through bone. A crow screeches in the distance.
From the street, I stop and stare at the automated store and its fancy automated coffee machine. The coffee machine glistens proudly amongst the barren wasteland of displays. Topped by a glass bin of coffee beans, the unit screams clean and functioning caffeine joy.
I debate for several minutes by making excuses for this wreck of a business and ignoring all rational thought. Nothing justifies my next move other than sheer hope for a coffee miracle.
I place a coffee cup on the tray and press a button. A horrible grinding sound begins. I convince myself this is the sound of coffee beans being prepped for the best-tasting coffee in the world (beans picked fresh from a beautiful orchard in another land by a handsome and shirtless man).
Suddenly a giant black hose on the side of the unit does a little dance. Pressure in this area quickly morphs into a crescendo of hissing madness. I take a few steps back just in time to miss huge globs of moldy horror spitting from the machine into the cup and surrounding sticky surfaces.
How does one handle a situation like this? Under the best of circumstances, I see no other way than the way I handled it. I screamed, cussed a little, and ran the rest of the way to work.
I am left with so many questions.