Do You Speak Java Jive?: The Language of the Indie Cafes

java jive

I haven’t fre­quent­ed Star­bucks for a long time, but when I did, I could nev­er get into their lin­go. Do you want a “grande,” the “barista” asked? No, just give me a medi­um, ok? And if I ever tired of the irri­tat­ing lin­go bat­tles, I head­ed to an indie cafe where sim­ple lan­guage made sense.

Nowa­days, you appar­ent­ly can’t bank on the indies for an escape. This week­end, The New York Times has a huge spread reveal­ing the pri­vate vocab­u­lar­ies of Amer­i­ca’s indie cof­fee bars, the places where you can now order “Cap­puc­ci­gos,” “Jillys,” “Kan­skis,” and a “Franken­caf,” along with some “Bert & Ernie,” appar­ent­ly the new way of say­ing cream and sug­ar. If you care to speak Java Jive, you’ll want to spend time with this spread. It’s almost some­thing we could add to our list of Free For­eign Lan­guage Lessons.

And now for some more cof­fee ran­dom­ness:

Every­thing You Want­ed to Know About Cof­fee in Three Min­utes

“The Vertue of the COFFEE Drink”: London’s First Cafe Cre­ates Ad for Cof­fee in the 1650s

The Physics of Cof­fee Rings Final­ly Explained

Jim Henson’s Vio­lent Wilkins Cof­fee Com­mer­cials (1957–1961)

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