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a near rumble at starbucks

Last Thursday, I was working out of the Starbucks on Navajo and Fletcher Parkway. This Starbucks — like many Starbucks — doesn’t have enough electrical outlets for people to plug into. I find this to be highly annoying, especially since Starbucks is trying to court the laptop crowd. It is either a design flaw in their store roll-out plan or a deliberate attempt to limit the time people will spend in the store.

At any rate, I digress. Just had to get that off my chest.

I was sitting at a table, plugged into the closest electrical outlet — which left one open. Two guys sit down at opposite ends of the table and begin to unpack. One guy hands me his power cord and asks if I’ll plug him in. So, I take his cord and start to plug it in. At this point, the other fellow speaks up and says to this guy that he was about to plug in there. Then an argument breaks out over who was there first.

Now, these are not 15 or 16-year old kids; one guy looks to be in his 30s and the other fellow was at least 50. Neither guy would back down. The older guy then begins cussing out the younger guy. This is all unfolding right in front of me … right in the middle of Starbucks. I really thought the old guy might start throwing blows.

I only had about 30 minutes of work left and knew that I had a fully-charged battery. I offered to unplug and let both of them plug in but the older guy wouldn’t let me. Instead, he sat there and stewed while the other guy plugged in. When I finally left, he said “thanks” and proceeded to call the guy another name while he finally plugged in. The best part was … they had to sit directly across from each other in order for both to be plugged in.

For a few seconds, I thought about grabbing another cup of coffee and just settling in to a comfy chair to watch.

If a fight had broken out, there may have been the workings of a class-action lawsuit against Starbucks for not having enough electrical outlets.