Monday, November 08, 2004


I'm standing in line at Barnes and Nobles this morning to get an asiago cheese pretzel (a new addiction, as they are utterly perfect), and the woman in front of me orders "a grande hot chocolate chocolate chocolate CHOCOLATE."

That is verbatim. The repetition is not stroke-induced or caused by some other kind of nervous disorder. Not that I don't have them.

I'm not going to comment on the fact that the woman had a Body Mass Index of 35+ and was wearing stretch pants. Well, other than to say that I have a whole new idea of what the word 'stretch' can mean. I think I may have post-traumatic stretch disorder.

No, I'd like to discuss something far more important: 'grande.' Can we stop this, please? I'm absolutely fine with you spending eight dollars on a cup of coffee with whipped cream shapes inspired by the buildings of I.M. Pei. If you want to wait half an hour to see the Bank of China Tower in your mocha migraine pilate, I salute your love of both caffeine and architecture.

How about this, though. Could we just call it a 'large'?

I actually don't mind that 'grande' is used to designate size--I have a problem with how people say it. Look, people, you're not salsa dancing on the beach in Chimichanga. There's no roasted pig on the spit or fresh pineapples halved with machetes. You're not in a Levitra commercial. It's a bookstore. Please resist the urge to break out in song.

Coffee shops aren't the worst offenders, by far. Every time I eat fast food, I'm forced to run the sizing gauntlet. No, I don't want to 'vehicular homi-size' my meal. I don't want to 'stroke up.' If I want the 'bypass buster,' I'll ask for it. Thanks very much.

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