Posted by: slow study | September 7, 2010


We went to the Indianapolis area for Labor Day weekend to visit Shawn’s family.
On the way,  Shawn got off  I-69 at the Upland exit.   Upland, IN is a modest little town that is home to Taylor University.  Shawn and I are both alums.   And whaddaya know?  There’s a Starbucks.  Right there.  Right there practically at the foot of the exit ramp.
This is the same area that used to boast a Kmart, a McDonald’s and little else.  I mean, the college was out in the middle of nowhere.
And now there’s a Starbucks for crying out loud.
That just seems wrong.
So commercial. 
So indulgent.
It didn’t stop us from going inside and ordering drinks, though.
Anne got an organic milk that came in a juice box-looking container. 
Shawn to Janet:  Taste this milk!  It tastes like cake batter.
Janet, sipping, agreeing and then checking the packaging:  It says VANILLA.  I’ve never seen vanilla-flavored milk before.  But if you think about it, they have chocolate milk, why not vanilla?
Janet:  If all milk tasted like this, I would drink it more often.
Back in the minivan, we passed a field filled with cows.
Anne:  Hi cows!  Thanks for the vanilla milk!
Anne, a few minutes later:  I don’t want this milk anymore.  It tastes like hazelnut.
Janet:  The container says HORIZON, not hazelnut.
Later in the trip, we passed the Nestle factory.  There was a giant Nestle Quik bunny next to the sign, holding a drinking glass with a straw.
Anne:  I wish someone would hold me up so I could touch his milk.
Back on the road at the end of the weekend, heading back home, we decided to stop again at that same Starbucks. (No surprise there.)
At 10:30am, Anne ordered a double chocolate brownie. (Also no surprise there.)
Inside, there was a young guy seated with a laptop, an open textbook and a large drink (I forget the Starbucks word for “large.”  Grande?  No.  Venti?  Yeah, yeah, I think that’s it…).  He was wearing a purple shirt that read: Taylor Trojans.  Shawn went over and said hi, and told him that we graduated from TU 20 years ago. 
I promptly had a flashback to days at TU as a freshman during Homecoming Weekend, when strange women would come parading through the dorm. 
“This used to be OUR room,” the women at my door would gush.  (Yeah, yeah.  Strained smile from me.  I would force polite laughter as they would talk about the view and the curtains…  Oh, just go away, willya?!?!?!?!?)  Homecoming was SUCH a nuisance.
Shawn to Janet:  He’s a junior. 
We reported this back to Amy, who had stayed behind in the minivan.  She tries to avoid being seen with us as a family whenever possible.  We are just TOO freakin’ embarrassing to be associated with.
Amy was not impressed and told us that the guy probably thought we were stupid for coming over and talking to him.
Janet:  He was friendly.
Shawn:  Can you imagine?  Going to Starbucks with your laptop and studying there?  I would have loved that when I was at Taylor.
Amy:  Was Starbucks even INVENTED when you were at Taylor?
Janet:  Crap.  I just realized that we graduated from college before that guy was even BORN. 
And then this old gal busted through her grande Caramel Light Frappuccino.
Good news:  I seem to be backing away from my daily trips to McDonald’s for a large diet coke.
Bad news:  I’ve traded $1.06 and zero calories at McD for $4.00 and who knows how many calories at Starbucks.


  1. 125 calories for the Tall, 167 calories for the Grande…not too bad overall

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