Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Things that make me want to kick myself in the throat

The local newsrag for Portland, OR, the Oregonian, has a feature article today on an "upstart" (read: non-Starbucks) coffee chain ubiquitous in this state. The company is Dutch Bros. (helpfully, the article tells us that this is pronounced "broze"), and they just opened their 100th outlet, with annual sales of $47 million. Ok, impressive enough. But the writer then lapses into staid-reporter-covering-the-cool-kids mode (reminiscent of all the stories about wacky dot com businesses where they played foosball in the office! Crazy! stories of 6-7 years ago):

Pop crooner John Mayer is blasting from the speakers loud enough to nearly rattle the rainbow-colored rack of Torani syrup bottles as a customer pulls up to one of the two service windows at the Dutch Bros. java stand in northeast Bend.

A shaggy-haired young barista in flip-flops and a "Dutch Mafia" hoodie jumps into action. "What's up, dog?" he asks, grinning.

Pull into one of the Dutch Bros. drive-ups now dotting the Northwest and you'll likely encounter a similar boisterous greeting, part of the company's cultivated culture of out-sized enthusiasm and hip energy.
Sigh. Where to begin? I mean, "John Mayer" is named just four words into the whole article. COME ON! "What's up dog?" I'm sure this was stated ironically by the "shaggy haired" (oh those kids and their disrespect for haircuts! How unconventional!) kid, but the writer presents it as if he has just tapped into an unexplored vein of youth vernacular. Please make it stop.

And, if you needed even more reasons to get your hate on, this nugget, buried deep in the story, tells you all you need to know:
That's fine with the Boersma brothers, who got into the espresso trade after their family dairy farm chose to shut down rather than comply with new state environmental regulations.
"Uncool," as the kids might say.