Comments: Conversations at Starbucks

If the man on the cell phone doesn't incite your anger enough, maybe someone will sit down at the table next to you and decide that, while it is very important for her to watch an annoying instructional video on her laptop, it is most certainly not important that she use some darn headphones, especially since the research all over the table next to her certianly doesn't indicate that other folks might need to work as well.

That would get your murder juices flowing I bet.

Posted by Dani at February 17, 2009 10:49 AM

I think thanking him with a hockey stick is a VERY good idea. Gah.

Somehow, I don't have a hard time murdering a character before I write it, but then I cry afterwards. That's normal, right?

Posted by Aimee at February 17, 2009 10:49 AM

Joshilyn -

Next time you are craving music in Starbucks... open your computer, go to, click on Music, pick what kind of music you want to listen to, and viola! I thought this was a marvelous find for music at my workplace. You might want to go with Metal Rock for when you bash the guy's skull in with a hockey stick. Sets the mood pretty well. :)

Hope you feel better soon.


Posted by Erin at February 17, 2009 11:01 AM

I'm going out on a limb here and guessing Karen Abbott doesn't cook. I love the idea of an oven having a "purpose in life" to which to aspire.

as far as songs at Starbucks (and honestly HOW can they have broken their songs??) that is what Scott's ipod is for, put on the headphones and you are instantly cellphone-guy-less and with the volume low it is just like background noise. works great for me in a very open cube office where conversations - phone and otherwise - are not very private. some days I wish I had a hockey stick.

Posted by elizabeth at February 17, 2009 11:02 AM

I think the round-faced guy was a programmer and said that he likes to grab people with his code.

There. Feel better?

Posted by kmkat at February 17, 2009 11:05 AM

I second the music-on-computer/iPhone...

Perhaps he said, he likes to grab people with his cologne? which is still a funny image but may have actually been spoken; he could wear a strong aftershave?

I hope you feel better soon!

Posted by Jess at February 17, 2009 11:05 AM

I'm so sorry you are having so many distractons,
but my God I needed a good laugh and you provided!

Posted by Michelle at February 17, 2009 11:28 AM

I love you. Not in a stalkery, find your house and make you be my friend way (though if you found my house, I would surely invite you in for tea) but in a reading that was the most entertaining 5 minutes of my week way. I would read your grocery list and probably chuckle. Tanks.

Posted by Em at February 17, 2009 1:55 PM

You really shouldn't be making me laugh so hard when I'm sick, and let me assure you that right now my Gross National Product is far more gross than yours...although yours is quite gross its own right. Still, thank-you for helping my day not to be a total loss.

We have had not just one mouse, but entire family of the horrible little things die in the oven. Luckily, it sounds like Karen is safe from the inevitable result of this, which comes when you turn the oven on, and the smell of gently warmed dead mice fills the entire house.

Posted by jessica at February 17, 2009 2:33 PM

"I just love the grandpeople with their bowling."

"I just left the grappler with Mike Holden."

"Hi, just let the crapper biff Mike Owen."

Dang. That's going to bother me for days.

Posted by alala at February 17, 2009 4:26 PM

If Karen cannot tell you how to murder mice allow me to tell you how to entertain them. When it is late at night and your bartender husband is working and your good for nothing dogs are not, put their water bowls out in the kitchen. The mice will think you have set out party water and will come scurrying forth. You will get up on the couch and scream, the dogs will do nothing as will the mice.

Posted by pam at February 17, 2009 5:40 PM

I need to add gelid to the list of words that make me run screaming from the room...

Posted by Laura at February 17, 2009 6:25 PM

I really, really want to know how Karen Abbott knows she has exactly THREE mice in her apartment? We have plural mice in our house, and have killed three so far (over a period of trapping and escaping and the dog barking wildly at a spot on the baseboard to no avail) but we have no idea HOW MANY exactly there are -- have Karen's mice left her a little invoice saying how many they have hired to do the job of befouling her apartment? I would appreciate that, since I'd like to know how many we have to kill. Also, unless her three are all boy mice or all girl mice, couldn't there be more if she doesn't kill them all within 15 days?

Posted by TrudyJ at February 17, 2009 8:00 PM

Maybe he writes for a newspaper and he said, "I like to grab people with my column."

Or maybe he's just crazy.

Posted by cheryl at February 17, 2009 9:16 PM

Was he wearing leiderhosen? I think he said "I love to give people a slab of my Stollen."

Posted by JulieB at February 17, 2009 10:45 PM

Eeuw. I am not afraid of mice, if they are clean pink and white pet mice. However, the nasty little grayish brown ones that scurry from one bookshelf to another while my cats are looking the other way (or worse, playing with a TOY mouse) give me the willies. Did you know that "they" say for every mouse you see, there are ten mice that you don't see? I once invited a complete stranger into my home to empty a mousetrap. It was the old fashioned snappy kind, and the mouse almost made off with the bit of peanut butter. Almost.

Posted by Sandi at February 17, 2009 10:55 PM

Ha ha ha!!! I am so glad I am not the only person who has played "Mouse Hockey." I had a mixed breed dog who was an excellent mouser, and a Rottweiler who tried very vigorously, and, after the grain field next door had been reaped, we played some good games. As Bill Cosby once said, "my job is goaltending. The kid (or, in my case, mouse) comes to me, and I stick him back into play!"

My mixed breed, Ubu, felt that mice made excellent chewing gum. (BLEACK!!!! Have YOU ever tried to clean mouse-chewing-gum off YOUR carpet?)

Also, seeing's as how it was Starbucks, could he have said, "I'd love a grand (some-kind-of-coffee-with-a-name-that-rhymes-with-"people"), with a cold one"?

Be well soon!!


Posted by Jennifer at February 17, 2009 11:48 PM

Mice? Just blame it on heavy reading... Apartment living plus heavily laden bookshelves eqauls mice. True. The floor is pushed down just a smidgen of enough to allow egress to any and ALL little mousies traveling along a previously dark and dreary in-wall highway. We FINALLY figured this out when we moved... And as for trapping them, ours preferred peanut butter over cheese, judging by the snap of the trap nightly death rate. And there is nothing like that SNAP to bolt you right out of bed in the middle of the night. That is until it becomes common place and you sleep through it. Where upon you add it to your morning list...

Posted by JeanEva at February 18, 2009 9:09 AM

I'm giggling uncontrollably at "thanking him with a hockey stick".....

Posted by RuthWells at February 18, 2009 9:17 AM

i am off to the coffee shop myself - forgot to pack my hockey stick, thx for the reminder.

Posted by babelbabe at February 18, 2009 9:26 AM

I don't know if I'd worry about the parrots, their beaks have always terrified me, they could probably do serious damage to a mouse.

What do wild parrots eat? Are they vegetarian?

Posted by nil zed at February 18, 2009 9:38 AM

The whole mouse conversation cracked me up--which isn't good as my lungs are currently on 4 prescriptions to allow them to process oxygen. . .after your post, I almost needed another med.

Posted by Roxanne at February 18, 2009 10:06 AM

Maybe he said "I just love to grab people with my cologne" -- like you know maybe he wears a really striking scent. Only maybe the "gne" at at the end confuses him so he just shortens to to colon.

Posted by Leandra at February 18, 2009 3:04 PM

I have it on good authority that parrots can intimidate cats, no problem (so maybe you can borrow one to keep Boggart in line). Karen's probably right, the mice would like the seeds the parrots eat, but I'm sure the parrots can take care of themselves.

However, an ambush with hockey sticks??? is that humane? What's wrong with an old-fashioned mouse trap? Bait it with some peanut butter (or bacon), and when it goes SNAP in the night, put the whole thing in a plastic bag, tie it up tight, and no more mouse.

Poison is a bad, bad, bad idea, because (1) warfarin doesn't work right away (I've seen mice sit there and munch away like the stuff was popcorn while we were watching TV), (2) it's an anticoagulant that kills mice by causing internal bleeding and the mice might suffer, (3) they might die (and rot) in a very inaccessible and yet odorific spot and (4) it's also poisonous to humans if ingested. Traps are much more straightforward.

I think the Starbucks guy said, "I like to grab people with my GOLEM."

Posted by firefly at February 18, 2009 3:41 PM

Just wanted to weigh in on a few things (like Joss, I am procrastinating, although unfortunately I can't work at Starbucks because I can't stand background noise when I'm drafting, even if it's really intriguing background noise having to do with magical, magnetic colons).

Trudy J: Admittedly three mice is wishful thinking. In fact, it's outright fraudulent thinking, because this week I have caught four and have seen at least six. Knock on wood (softly, lest it wakes them up from their hopefully permanent slumber) I haven't seen any for two days now. So the two (please, lord, let it be only two) that I saw scurrying around might very well be perishing in the oven. I make my husband check every night when he comes home. I'm brave enough to chop at them when they're alive, but I want nothing to do with the resulting corpse. And I sincerely hope you're winning your own battle against the critters.

Nil Zed: they're not wild parrots, but domesticated African Greys, and yes, their beaks can be terrifying. They eat everything--and I mean everything--but avocado and chocolate. I'm more worried about the mice fouling up their food--these vermin carry hantavirus and rabies and other awful things--and there have been droppings in the bottoms of my birds' cages. The thought of those mice breaking and entering into my parrots' cages in the dead of night makes me quite murderous, obviously...

Firefly: I have tried every type of humane trap out there. Right now I have no fewer than a dozen quick snap traps scattered about the house, all waiting, all baited with peanut butter. We've had luck with ONE of them. These are clever, savvy, city mice and they know traps when they see them. I even bought one of those electronic sound radar things and I watched a mouse waltz blithely past it as if it were playing Mozart. At some point (probably when I noticed droppings in my birds' cages, and also when I began having recurring nightmares about mice) I stopped caring about being humane. It was war. Believe me, I didn't pick up a hockey stick and decide to go after the mouse just for the sport of it. I live and work in a tiny apartment with a husband and two rather large, demanding birds and the place just isn't big enough for all of us. And if my birds catch something nasty and die because I didn't act quickly enough, I would never forgive myself.

Posted by Karen Abbott at February 18, 2009 4:49 PM

P.S. to Trudy J: plug in EVERY single hole and nook and cranny throughout your house with steel wool. They can wiggle in through gaps as small as a pencil eraser, so be meticulous. My husband did this and I don't think any more are getting in.

Posted by Karen Abbott at February 18, 2009 5:42 PM

Karen Abbott, you need to borrow yourself a CAT. PRONTO.

And Starbucks guy said "I'd just love a grande tea and a muffin." At least, that's what he said in MY head.

Posted by Amy-Go at February 18, 2009 6:39 PM

Dear Karen, (Sorry Joshylin, hope this isn't rude)
Having had only minor mouse problems, but still, I do belive poison is problematic, since the mouse may die in a stinky, yet hard to find place. College, 1985.
I do believe traps, and a cat, and a German Shephard, are in order. Little House in the small, country town by the railroad tracks, 1994.
Good luck.

Posted by JulieB at February 18, 2009 8:12 PM

Akk! Joshilyn! I can't type tonight. OR push buttons.

Posted by JulieB at February 18, 2009 8:14 PM

Uh... "I'm just above you drab people with my coat on"?
Was the plaid jacket bright?
I don't know, too early here and my brain has not had enough caffeine.

Posted by Rompompom at February 19, 2009 2:09 AM

Ooh, DON'T borrow a cat unless the poison is long gone! It's slow-acting enough that the mice stagger around, all easy-to-catch, for a couple days. Thereby also poisoning any cats who consume them.

Of course, this is assuming you would borrow an effective cat, not one who ignores the mice!

Posted by Brigitte at February 19, 2009 5:21 AM

I had a mouse. I think I've only had one at a time - the behavior seemed consistent with each. The Illinois one came out from behind my range, along the cord. I couldn't figure out anyway to block it. I didn't necessarily want it dead, but I certainly wanted it GONE! OK, after it messed up my Cuisinart (it got trapped under the bowl, upside down on the base, REALLY scratched up the base; I couldn't get it out without letting it go!), I wanted it dead, but mostly I didn't care.

Anyway, those electronic things did NO good. I don't know if my mouse was deaf or if it didn't mind the noise or what, but they were useless. On the other hand, I only had one mouse, so maybe...

Posted by Diane (TT) at February 19, 2009 3:10 PM

Oh, I have so needed a Joss fix. thank you and feel better please.

Poor maligned Karen Abbot.

Posted by Cele at February 20, 2009 12:02 AM