So, it started with this Joshua Feuerstein guy posting a Youtube video, bringing up the idea that Starbucks was attempting to take Christ and Christmas off of their coffee cups. Big issue, I know. In the category of “first world problems”, the audacity, right? I mean. They go and make them blatantly red. Like, JUST red. That’s it. We can only sit back and watch in anguish at the decimation of traditional values. Red? I can’t even…
So Joshua, maker of videos that go viral because of their controversial Christian slant (and through which he is probably making a decent living) made such a video, rallying Christians to boycott Starbucks’ Grinchy attitude by going in and ordering a coffee, but saying that your name is “Merry Christmas”. That way poor Starbucks will be forced to have the baristas put “Christmas” on the cups. Even though they wanted to stay neutral on the whole topic. Tricking Starbucks! What a tricky trickster, that Joshua.
So, what he's saying is (see if I got this straight) go in and…(wait for it) buy coffee? Yup, that’s pretty much it. So is Joshua the best thing to happen to Starbucks lately, or what?
I won’t do the whole topic justice because I’d need way more time and these neat trending things fade away so quickly. So I’ll let you in my head for a minute (just flick the light on, it’s a little dark in there…) while I imagine what probably went on over there at the meeting of the minds (Starbucks’ marketing team).
Daryl: What do you think for Christmas this year. Snowmen again?
Angela (nickname - Cruella Deville) : Snowmen, Daryl? Really?? How do you still work here? No, I need some controversy. (stands and smacks conference table) Give mama some controversy!
Mortimer: It’s Christmas, how hard can it be? Let’s just refuse to say Merry Christmas!
(uproarious laughter all around. Mortimer hangs head in shame)
Brian: (wiping eyes) Who says Merry Christmas, idiot?
Mortimer: (angry now) Not merry Christmas idiot. Just Merry Chr---or…wait…Merry Christmas idiot? (you can almost hear the wheels turning) could that be something?
Cruella: No. That’s stupid. Also, you have to do a lot more nowadays than just axe “Merry Christmas”, idiot.
Mortimer: (mumbles) whatever. (secretly likes the way “Merry Christmas, idiot” rolls off the tongue. Says it a few times under his breath)
Sane Sue: Look. Here’s what we do. Nothing on the cup. Just red. And our logo. People will freak. And I’m thinking…twinkly side glances…Joshua? Silence. And then…
Joooooshuaaaaaa!!!! (much whooping and hollering and jumping around. Meeting adjourned, with lots of back-slapping and camaraderie as they all file out in a big crowd. Nervous kid working the coffee cart is left with tie askew, dozens of empty cups and a half-eaten slice of reduced-fat lemon pound cake).
Offer is sent to Joshua’s people. Large sums of money change hands, lawyers arrange documents to be signed, joker smiles are hidden behind serious business faces.
Joshua does his video. Generous amounts of red-neck, a sprinkle of lovable dumb jock and a nice fat dollop of Christian fanaticism. “I’m just like you guys” and “let’s punk Starbucks” come across vividly. It is Oscar-worthy.
Then, the powers that be, make it go viral…you know, like they do. Christians are very excited. They go en masse into Starbucks to follow Joshua’s idea of a protest, having the best time thinking up Christmassy sounding things for the baristas to write on their cups. It’s rilly rilly fun.
Non-Christians are equally excited. They also head en masse to Starbucks to purchase coffee and keep the cup after, hoping to make a buck or two on eBay with it someday.
Everybody else of no religious affiliation whatsoever are also heading over. They just want to see if anything happens, so they throw down for 7 bucks for a coffee. Maybe tell the barista their name is Yukon Cornelius.
Starbucks promotes Sane Sue. She begins work on next year’s Christmas debacle, sorry, campaign.
They send Joshua a gift-card for a life-time supply of Vanilla lattes. He gives it to his Mom. He doesn’t really drink coffee.
Christmas comes early for Starbucks. Cough - KACHING - cough (sorry…I have a sore throat. Hey, a nice warm drink would feel great on it…maybe a Caramel Macchiato?)
Disclaimer: I don’t know Joshua Feuerstein or anything about his motives for his videos. I like his hat. I don’t know anything about Starbucks' intention behind the red cup but I think it is very pretty. I think Christians are cool. I think non-Christians are cool. I think Christ is, literally, IN Christmas. I mean, look at the word. I’m not wrong. Other than that, I made this entire thing up. I don’t even know if en masse is right (spell-check seems doubtful) I do, however, know that Yukon Cornelius was an integral character in the movie “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” and is often – sadly - overlooked. That is all.