Starbucks Around the World: Lebanon, IN

The idea of Starbucks (at least when I was an employee there) was always to come, stay, let it be your “third place” to hang out and relax.  This is completely contrary to what much of America now understands Starbucks to be: just another drive-through fast food joint with really expensive, tasty coffee.  Such is the case with stores like this one in Lebanon, IN, and so many others like it that have giant Siren’s thrusting above the interstate next to the golden arches and the BP signs.

This is not necessarily a criticism, simply a response to what “America” seems to want… which is to have their cake and eat it to.  At 7:30pm, I found this Starbucks to be somewhat sub-par… they were completely out of sandwiches and salads, and the barista put whip on a no-whip hot chocolate that (by my palate) was obviously made with reheated milk.

“Long day?” I asked.

“You don’t even know…. I’ve made like 100 hot chocolates today.”

What I didn’t tell this Barista was that in my day I’d make 100 hot chocolates an hour…

In any case, the staff was pleasant, they fixed my drink – unbegrudgingly and apologetically – when I noticed it was made incorrectly, and the bathrooms were nice and clean.  Plus, if a Siren in the sky gets a truck driver off of bad gas station coffee every once in awhile, then I guess the bending of the business model a bit is totally worth it.

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Lauren

Lauren Warnecke is a freelance writer and editor, focused on dance and cultural criticism in Chicago and across the Midwest. Lauren is the dance critic for the Chicago Tribune, editor of See Chicago Dance, and founder/editor of Art Intercepts, with bylines in Chicago Magazine, Milwaukee Magazine, St. Louis Magazine and Dance Media publications, among others. Holding degrees in dance and kinesiology, Lauren is an instructor of dance and exercise science at Loyola University Chicago.