When I moved to Everett from California, I was initially perplexed by the small, brightly colored gnome houses that pepper the streets like fire hydrants. Turns out, these are simply drive-through coffee shops for the latte addicted (up here, everyone). They are only large enough to cage a single barista and her espresso machine, along with a few snacks and those disgusting syrups.
And yet, I still can’t get a drive-through margarita. This city has its priorities all backwards.
But I digress. So, I’m on my way to a play-date and I’m desperate for a caffeine fix. The closest kiosk to my house (that was on the right side of the street) is just a few blocks away. My exhausted, fix-seeking brain feeds me only that much information. My brain is like a lousy Google. My brain is Bing.
What I conveniently forget, is that the coffee kiosk by my house is what’s politely known as a “bikini barista” spot. To everyone who does not live in the Pacific Northwest – THIS EXISTS. There are coffee kiosks where the lady operating the espresso machine is wearing lace knickers and a bra. And sometimes a cowboy hat or devil horns, depending on the franchise. Yes, it turns out there are franchises. I’m not linking to them because – well, ew – but trust me; this is a thing. A woman in fancy underwear serves you coffee. And not in your own kitchen.
So as soon as I realized what I was pulling into, I pulled out again (Yes, I know how that sounds). I almost didn’t. I’m a curious person, by nature, and I have a lot of questions I’d love to have answers for…or to at least ask out loud for my own amusement.
- Were they not hiring at Hooters?
- Follow up question: Is this a step down or a step up from Hooters?
- Is OSHA aware of what you’re doing?
- Seriously, is any tip really that good?
- Aren’t you cold?
- Are you producing your own milk for the Lattes?
- Are you working your way through law school?
- Do you know some good treatments for steam burns?
- Is there another kind of “eye opener” not on the menu?
- Does the owner provide the uniform or is it a bring from home kinda deal?
- Who did your tattooing/piercing?
I don’t know if it’s weirder that these things exist, or that they’re not everywhere. And maybe they are, by now. When I was in LA, I saw a billboard advertising topless traffic school, so I’m pretty sure there’s a market. It still strikes me as vaguely unsanitary and not-so-vaguely dangerous. I can’t make a meal in my kitchen fully clothed without burning myself. But that’s me, and who am I to judge. Maybe more jobs in the future will be performed by women in their underwear. Or men! My cute UPS guy is definitely overdressed. How about a sexy piano teacher? bikini lawn-mower maintenance? Naked welding?
That said, if either of my girls grows up to be a bikini barista, I’ll pretty much feel like I failed them. And my country. And feminism.
Way to set the bar, Seattle.
sexy cat costume, where have I seen that before hmmmmm. Good luck.
Eh, doesn’t bother me. But when I lived in Detroit, the nicest building on the block was a Deja Vu, so my standards are not that high.
I found your blog! My husband (Matthew DuBois the third) does know of your husband because he’s seen the name in emails. He has never seen him though and I don’t think I can convince him to go up and say hi. He’s just too cool for school. Now that we got the small talk out of the way, I’d like to say that I too want to ask the bikini baristas I walk past if they are cold. It’s my one burning question every single time. Also one of them on a smoke break outside the hut (they aren’t chained there, it seems) yelled out “fat ass bitch” as I was walking by last week. When I turned around, slightly flattered, mostly amused, they were instantly apologetic “No..no, not you! Sorry.” Some guy driving on the road must have said something and she said something back. It’s a good story.
I knew they were half-naked, I didn’t realize they were also charming!
Martin is currently working on his business plan for ‘Steam Wandz’, an all male version in speedos. I told him I would rather have a nice sensitive boy with glasses and a cardigan make me my coffee, compliment me on nail polish all while listening to The Smiths. Sadly, he says there is no market for such a thing. Coffee cock, I say.
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