Starbucks and Humboldt: Let it go!
“Starbucks is the essence of evil.” Apparently, that is the consensus among many Humboldt County residents. One Starbucks moves in, and many locals are hysterical.
Before you get enraged, I am neither for nor against Starbucks. I don’t really care much about them.
I was born in Portland, Oregon, coffee shop central. When I first moved here, I was so amused by the reaction of people to having two Starbucks in town. “Two Starbucks?! That is WAY too many!” That was the single funniest thing I had ever heard.
Eventually I just got used to Starbucks, since they are pervasive. It did get redundant and dull fast because of that. Whenever I felt like coffee, I just went to whatever coffee shop was near by. Usually a Starbucks.
For eight years in Humboldt I have heard the same opinion about this issue. I am sick of it! Why can’t we all accept the fact that they are here to stay for good? You are definitely not going to make them move by your “Friends don’t let friends go to Starbucks” bumper stickers. What do you think you are accomplishing by that? Maybe someone will look at it and think, “Oh that cool cat and his friends don’t go to Starbucks, so maybe I shouldn’t.”
I have asked an online blog community why people hate Starbucks so passionately. The most prominent reason they hate Starbucks is that they think our local coffee shops will die out. Way too many of us are freaked out for that reason. It is completely unfounded.
We still have a majority of our local coffee shops don’t we? It’s been four years since we had our first Starbucks and we haven’t lost a single local coffee shop. You may be asking “What about The Udder Place and Prima Espresso?” Well, from what I have heard from a worker at Mocha Motion, “The Udder Place” moved their business down to San Diego. As far as Prima Espresso goes, it closed down due to personal issues. We still have businesses such as Old Town Coffee and Chocolates, Has Beans, Jitter Bean, Sutters Mud, Mocha Motion, and others, don’t we?
In my thirteen years of living in Northern Oregon, I saw all kinds of local coffee shops coexist peacefully with Starbucks. In my hometown, there were as many local coffee shops as there were Starbucks. In Seattle there area a number of local coffee shop across the street from a Starbucks and they are both still in existence. It seems to me that every time a Starbucks opens, a new local coffee shop opens too. I have noticed that here in Humboldt as well.
I think those of us who attack Starbucks in fear of losing local businesses shouldn’t worry so much. Stop your protesting and stop trying to drive them out, because you are not getting anywhere with it and you never will. I’ll go anywhere I want for coffee!