How much coffee do the people of Columbus, Ohio drink, anyway?
My new walking path to work heads straight down South Third Street, from German Village to downtown Columbus. It’s a pleasant walk of about a mile and a half, past churches, hotels, the Ohio Statehouse . . . and three Starbucks. Three, in such a short distance! And there are other, independent coffee houses like Stauf’s sprinkled in along the way, too. If you wanted, you could easily buy your steaming hot cup of triple latte grande with whipped cream, drink it, get multiple refills along the way, and end up in the office with a groaning bladder and a head buzzing with caffeine and sugar.
Starbucks are ubiquitous in our culture, like McDonald’s was years ago when there seemed to be a Golden Arches at every intersection. But many of those McDonald’s outlets ultimately closed, either due to overkill, or Big Mac fatigue, or America’s innate interest in always moving on to the Next Big Thing. You wonder how many of the Starbuck’s that now dot the landscape will survive, and when the current fixation with jazzed-up, flavored coffee will end and be replaced by . . . who knows what?