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Gold Standard

November 20, 2007

Back East here, Tim Horton’s is a big thing. They’re everywhere. Like Starbucks, back home, but moreso. There are very few places you can go that’re not within walking distance of a Timmy’s. It’s hilarious. Or it would be, if only the coffee wasn’t so terrible, and they didn’t exert such an awful influence on their patrons.

They come in asking or all sorts of bizarre things that’re spawned from the collective minds of bored Timmy’s counterstaff.

However, the one thing that bothers me the most is by far the most innocuous facet of what is apparently Timmy’s own little approximation of Coffee Culture. The “Double-Double.” Or, at least, the belief of many that by quoting some pair of numbers at me, their coffee will arrive at the counter with some heinous combination of creams and/or sugars.

Having to explain to those poor folks that we don’t, in fact, instill their choice of adultrations into their coffee before they receive it is almost painful. And it seems like I do it every 10th customer. They always see it as though we’re denying them some massive privledge, some essential service. I had one old man try and bribe me to dose his drinks for him “…But I don’t know how, here, you just do it…”

…His price wasn’t high enough.

Anyway. It’s a very simple trust issue. We trust our patrons to not screw us by putting too much cream in their coffee, or excessive sugars, we trust that everyone has different preferences, and that they are not all in 1oz increments of cream/sweetener syrup. We trust them to do it themselves.

Timmy’s, as best I can tell, does not. They’ve not always done it that way, but for whatever reason they opted to shame their customers out of manufacturing the poor man’s latte, forcing them to quote approximately how many of each condiment they want each drink.

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