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I NEED HELP IN LONDON!

I need some guidance here, people. I'm in London this morning 03/09/2013, on a layover.

I go next door to the hotel, to the Pret fast food restaurant, to get a muffin and a cup of coffee. The large menu above the busy check out area, fashioned like a McDonald's cashier stand, has a list of coffees. It says "COFFEE". There is a variety of coffees. This is how the conversation went.

ME: "Hi, I'd like a large coffee please."

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Latte? We only have one size"

ME: "No, just coffee"

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Latte?"

ME: "No, coffee. Whatever is the strongest."

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "What kind?"

ME: "Coffee. I don't care. Whatever is the strongest you have."

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Latte?"

ME: " No, not latte. Just coffee with a little milk."

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Latte?"

I look the people to my left and right and it's as if they're in another world. Not hearing anything going on. I decide on a new tactic, maybe if I can get her working with me.

ME: "Do you have bran muffins?"

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Yes, right here." She picks one out for me. Then she says, "Latte?"

ME: "Do you have just coffee. All I want is coffee. The sign says that there are five or six different kinds of coffee. Just give me the strongest you have. Please," I beg.

CUTE SERBIAN GIRL WITH THICK ACCENT: "Oh, okay."

The cute serbian girl with the thick accent turns around and prepares something. She hands me the cup and smiles.

I take the coffee back to my room, open it and it's a latte.

What am I doing wrong?
cynthiagwilsonmavis_swtAZPainterAmrit

Comments

  • Hi,
    I'm new... This post made me laugh, (thanks).

    Remember the old John Belusci SNL skit... "Cheeburgr... No Coke, Pepsi" sounds like you're there.

    Good luck with lunch!
    Cindy ;)
    GarycynthiagwilsonMRRhoadesgarrykravit
  • Garry, I can relate! I just tried to order a "small" coffee at Starbucks - no such thing!

    Martin
    Gary
  • Hahahahahaha!! This thread is shoo farknee~ XD =)) lol.. Latte? :3 *makes a cute face* and I'm sure Serbian isn't blonde lol.. =)) ~O)
    garrykravitcynthiagwilson
  • You got me with "cute Siberian girl with thick accent" lol
    cynthiagwilsongarrykravitRonna
  • You should have just told her you wanted coffee.
    garrykravit
  • Christel said:

    What idea also to want to drink a coffee in the country of tea... :(|) =))

    Christel, I actually thought about that. The first menu was for tea. The second menu, coffee. I thought to myself, is there some stigma about ordering coffee here? :)
    cynthiagwilsonChristel
  • mnsrc said:

    Garry, I can relate! I just tried to order a "small" coffee at Starbucks - no such thing!

    Martin

    Oh s--t, Martin, don't get me started on Starbucks!

    g
    cynthiagwilson
  • I was gonna say there is NO WAY you would ever quit Downtown Abbey! Now it will probably get canceled just because you threatened! Poor G....Just drink the damn latte and be happy! :P
  • edited March 2013



    Guys,

    The day only got worse from there. I went to the airport and remembered why I don't like flying to London. They confiscated my large bottle of Frank's Hot Sauce, and my container of shaving cream.

    Dang G, :-O Not the HOT SAUCE... =)) :)) =))



    I snarled at her and said, "FINE! I'm never going to watch Downton Abbey or MI5 again!"

    :(( , I miss MI5.


    "Now, now sweety... I mean, captain, it's not that bad. Everything will be okay."

    I said, "I just can't take it anymore. I cried three times this year after Downton Abbey episodes, and then I can't get coffee this morning, and now you confiscate my hot sauce and my shaving cream. Life is just so complicated all of a sudden." My copilots moved further away from the area.

    I cried, and my copilot mover further away.... =)) :)) ...Folks you can't make this stuff up. =))

    O and this is my Favorite....




    She said, "They let you fly airplanes?"

    I shrugged.

    I shrugged....lolol. I SHRUGGED....LOL....LOL =)) =)) :))

    Last one - I SHRUGGED =)) =)) =)) . Hands down that beat the hot sauce....olololol

    Garry, My food flew out my mouth over that one.....lol. PRICCCCLESSS!

    G, you made my early spring forward morning. Safe travel.

    :) ;;)
    MRRhoadesmavis_swtGary
  • edited March 2013
    MRRhoades said:

    You got me with "cute Siberian girl with thick accent" lol

    HILARIOUS!!!!!

    :)) =))
    MRRhoadestjs
  • LizONeal said:

    I was gonna say there is NO WAY you would ever quit Downtown Abbey! Now it will probably get canceled just because you threatened! Poor G....Just drink the damn latte and be happy! :P

    Imagine that, an international incident over a bottle of Frank's Hot Sauce. I singlehandedly ruined relations with our closest ally (no offense Canada, it's just the people from Quebec who snowbird in Florida for the winters can't drive).


  • Last one - I SHRUGGED =)) =)) =)) . Hands down that beat the hot sauce....olololol

    Garry, My food flew out my mouth over that one.....lol. PRICCCCLESSS!

    G, you made my early spring forward morning. Safe travel.

    :) ;;)


    Cyn,

    Two things are clear to me now.

    1. You need to be reading some novels by a good friend of mine, Christopher Moore. Maybe start with FOOL, or LAMB, THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO BIFF, CHRIST'S CHILDHOOD PAL.

    2. I should send you an excerpt from my novel.

    G
  • Cyn, .... Okay here you go. Here is chapter one from my novel, FLYING DARWIN:

    image
  • Doesn't seem to be working... try this:
    Doesn't seem to be working...

    Try this: www.garrykravit.com/FLYINGDARWIN.html
    cynthiagwilson
  • Welcome to the EU, where all the English speaking folks moved to Australia to get a job. LOL! But if you find a cute Latvian chick that has been in England more than 2 weeks, try asking for a White Coffee. Hopefully that will provide you the desired Java.
    garrykravit
  • edited March 2013

    Cyn, .... Okay here you go. Here is chapter one from my novel, FLYING DARWIN:



    image

    Definitely reading this on my lunch today!

    Glad you survived your "HORRIFIC" day, lmao--Hey, never steal a man's hot sauce, I'll go fist to cuffs for my sriracha ;)

    garrykravit
  • edited March 2013
    Hmmm

    was it this bad?? :) I can't live without chilli but I want to visit UK someday~ :D
    garrykravit
  • edited March 2013

    Doesn't seem to be working... try this:
    Doesn't seem to be working...

    Try this: www.garrykravit.com/FLYINGDARWIN.html

    I just finished reading this. I laughed so hard it hurt. The story played excellent as if I watching a movie. I couldn't breathe from laughing so hard.

    Gunnar and my son Jon, couldn't get pass the third paragraph without howling with laughter. Tears was flowing. Fantastic work.

    Did I miss out on you promoting this book. Or you're still writing? Like I said, fantastic.

    >:D< =D> :)
    mavis_swt
  • :-bd It appears those writing seminars paid off ... either that or you have yet another natural talent. :P
    garrykravit
  • Cyn,

    Wow, that is THE most incredible compliment. Thank you! Writing has always been my first passion and it's what I went to graduate school for. I was very luck to be in an outstanding program. In fact, if you happened to see the Obama inauguration, the poet who read, Richard Blanco, is from our program in Miami (FIU - Florida International University). I'm going to be painting a portrait of one of our professors/novelist, and a good friend, John Dufresne. His novel is LOVE WARPS THE MIND A LITTLE is wonderful. He's a brilliant literary writer. I learned a lot from my years there.

    I'm thinking this is the photo I'm going to use but not sure yet.

    image

    See, I really think I have ADHD ... we were talking about the novel and suddenly, SQUIRREL!

    But seriously, I have about half 250 pages written but maybe really only half of it. There is a lot of extra stuff in there. Writing is much harder for me than painting. Maybe not the writing, but definitely plotting. In fact Karen and I were talking about it tonight because I mentioned that I posted this chapter. She's a writer. She actually completed her novel and it is with her agent in New York. She's starting her second one in a couple of months she she's finished teaching. Anyway, she said that comedy is really hard because it may come naturally to write something funny but those who do have a tendency to write for the laugh and find it hard to concoct a complete story out of it. I totally agree, though I do have my novel plotted out. I just have to finish writing it. For me painting is so much more enjoyable.

    If Gunnar thought that was funny please have him read some of Chris Moore's stuff. Chris is actually the reason I'm painting. I have mentioned this in the past.

    Here is what I suggest from his work (two of which were previously mentioned):

    - LAMB, THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO BIFF, CHRIST'S CHILDHOOD PAL
    - FOOL (this is King Lear told from the perspective of the horn dog court jester, the Fool. When Chris was telling Karen and me about this Karen said, "Chris, how are you going to take the single biggest example of a tragedy in literature and turn it into a comedy?
    - A DIRTY JOB
    - SACRE BLEU (this was his novel about the Impressionists)
    - COYOTE BLUE
    - ISLAND OF THE SEQUINED LOVE NUN

    He has several more but these are a good start. He also has a very popular vampire trilogy: BLOOD SUCKING FIENDS, BITE ME, A LOVE STORY, and YOU SUCK, A LOVE STORY.

    Chris is work is incredibly inventive and funny. While it's certainly not high brow literature, it's a lot of fun. In reality Chris is brilliant - one of the smartest people I know. He's just a consummate wise ass and at the top of his game in what he's doing right now.
    cynthiagwilson
  • :-bd It appears those writing seminars paid off ... either that or you have yet another natural talent. :P

    Shirl,

    That single short chapter you read is not about talent, natural or otherwise, it's the product of about twenty exhaustive revisions and lots of attempted critical review. And every time I read it I want to shred it. I see a bunch of stuff that needs to improved and fixed. Natural talent is B.S., as John Dufresne (photo above) would say. Writing is about hard, hard work. And it is hard work, on so many levels. Just like the creative part of painting. You need technical skills, which can be learned, and you need to learn to tell a story, which can be learned, and you need to be able to plot and develop characters, which can be learned, but at the end of the day the ability to be able to have people connect with the story and characters is what cannot be learned. The insightfulness into human nature and global connection is where those who are brilliant at writing have the natural ability, and that I think cannot be learned. John Dufresne has that. I often argue with him about it as he says anyone can write. I say maybe they can write but they cannot write the way you write. Just like painting. Some people can achieve the same technical proficiency but one will move people at great depth and the other will just be a fantastic painter.

    The one thing that made the biggest impact on me in that entire M.F.A. program was when one day in a class on plot the professor had us read the last page of The Sun Also Rises by Hemingway. I thought, man, that is some damn fine writing. He nails it so exquisitely, so succinctly. Then she handed us several pages and said, "Read these." It was basically the same ending but in first draft. I don't where she got it. Then we looked at successive drafts that Hemingway honed and honed and honed. He cut words, changed words, moved and removed sentences, like a diamond cutter creating a beautiful diamond from a rough stone. That day impacted me and it was then that I realized that writing (and now I see painting as well) isn't about simply being a genius who either has it or doesn't, it's about HARD WORK. It's about honing and polishing until you get it just right. It is almost never, ever, right the first time or the second, or even the third.

    That's a tough thing for those of us who are impatient.

    Anyway, I'm rambling again ... it's the jet lag.

    G
    Garymavis_swt
  • Get it going G., but this time just let it flow without correcting. No matter what, don't fix. ;)) Just tell the story straight through.

    Your painting will be Off the chart like the last. Watching from here. Great face, as well as character.
    =D>
  • edited March 2013

    Get it going G., but this time just let it flow without correcting. No matter what, don't fix. ;)) Just tell the story straight through.

    Your painting will be Off the chart like the last. Watching from here. Great face, as well as character.
    =D>

    Cyn,
    Wow. I went back and read what I wrote up there. Talk about jet lag. When I type and don't check it all of the words are coming out of my mind but many don't make it through the finger tips. It's actually kind of interesting how that works. That's my fault because I type very fast.

    Regarding the novel - yeah, I know how you're supposed to do it. Get it on the page. Then come back and revise. Thing is, I don't really want to write. That's why I'm painting. Maybe someday - but not now. It just requires way too much to do it right. You have to live, eat, breathe and be consumed by the characters and story. I can't do that and explore the paint as i want to.

    On John ... I took that photo about a week ago at his house. I shot a bunch, trying to do what Mark said. He likes different photos. I like the character photos, as you mentioned. Not sure what to do. We're going to shoot some more photos soon.

    But thanks,
    G
    cynthiagwilson
  • For an art forum, this thread certainly has veered off into a "latte" interesting directions.
    GarytjsAmritcynthiagwilson
  • edited March 2013



    You need technical skills, which can be learned, and you need to learn to tell a story, which can be learned, and you need to be able to plot and develop characters, which can be learned, but at the end of the day the ability to be able to have people connect with the story and characters is what cannot be learned. The insightfulness into human nature and global connection is where those who are brilliant at writing have the natural ability, and that I think cannot be learned. John Dufresne has that. I often argue with him about it as he says anyone can write. I say maybe they can write but they cannot write the way you write. Just like painting. Some people can achieve the same technical proficiency but one will move people at great depth and the other will just be a fantastic painter.

    G

    Creativity can be learnt, analytical thinking can be trained but the part about connecting with people is emotional and its a something inbuilt in you the ability to have sympathy or the empathise. We are made differently people have high IQ; low EQ, and low IQ; high EQ.

    If you are able to identify which you're lacking in you might:
    #1 accept it the way it is "oh I'm born like this, I can only be this.."
    #2 improving on what you lack.

    So I agree that some people are more "emotionally expressive" and impactful that way. The rest might be able to come close through identifying what's lacking and working on that. :) If the person can't feel that's just hopeless.. Lol.. Or they can hire someone to aid.

    ^^ just my thoughts on this matter. :D
  • @garrykravit you are amazing with your talents! When is this going to be published? Have you ever self-published? blurb.com is a good one.
  • @garrykravit you are amazing with your talents! When is this going to be published? Have you ever self-published? blurb.com is a good one.

    Sue,

    Thank you. I have to finish writing it first. :) I probably would not use a "self-publisher." This may be just me but I feel that if I couldn't find an agent to believe in and represent the work, and if I couldn't find an editor who thinks it worthy on some level and is willing to get their publisher to print it, then why in the world would I think it worthy of being published. Of course, that's just me. There have been a very few cases where self-published work went on to gain notoriety, though they are extremely rare.

    I think my attitude is, in part, due to the program I went through and the professional writers I know. It's crafted my attitude on the subject. On the other hand the world of publishing is changing dramatically.

    G
  • Garry, it is changing SO much! Just like there being more self-representing artists now, doing their own marketing, writers who have been dismissed in the past, yet who are really good, are getting their books on kindle and other electronic media. A publishing house has to make a HUGE investment to take a chance on an unknown author, and the odds are stacked against you even though you could be a great writer. If you get your work on an e-reader, I think it's even free or nearly so! Just my opinion, and don't mean to be negative, but remember that if agents, etc. turn you down, it likely has nothing to do with the merit of the work, and just consider at least uploading to Amazon or some e-reader.
  • AmritAmrit -
    edited March 2013
    Not only can you paint anything, you can also write. It's really great being amongst such a wonderful community of brilliant people.
    Oh, and next time, order a Mocha - hot chocolate mixed with coffee (delicious).
    In case you really didn't know:
    Latte is milky coffee
    Cappucinno frothy milk coffee (delicious).

    And I'd go to Costa over Starbucks anyday of the week.
    And if you are down in London, give me a buzz. I'll message you my email. We can check out some galleries, and I'll pick you up from the airport. I only live 20 minutes from Heathrow.
    elena
  • Amrit said:

    Not only can you paint anything, you can also write. It's really great being amongst such a wonderful community of brilliant people.
    Oh, and next time, order a Mocha - hot chocolate mixed with coffee (delicious).
    In case you really didn't know:
    Latte is milky coffee
    Cappucinno frothy milk coffee (delicious).

    And I'd go to Costa over Starbucks anyday of the week.
    And if you are down in London, give me a buzz. I'll message you my email. We can check out some galleries, and I'll pick you up from the airport. I only live 20 minutes from Heathrow.

    OH MAN! I wish I knew all that, Amrit. Especially the part about your living there. I would have definitely called you. On the other hand we really don't have much time there but it would be cool to have a coffee, or whatever they call it. ;)

    I generally don't fly London trips, not because I don't like London (I do), but because we get paid by the flight hour and from Washington to London is the shortest international flight time. When you commute, as I do, I want every day I spend on the company's time to pay the most flight time I can get it to. So the idea is why fly 6 or 7 hours in one day when you can fly 12 to 14 to Dubai or Beijing. :)
    Amrit
  • I have my cousin and her husband who are pilot and copilot for Jet airways. He does the Delhi to London but comes to visit sometimes. I know what it's like, little time to recover between flights and you need some me time. But in any case, next time you are down and feeling up to it contact me dude. We can go for a drive into London in my convertible (before I sell it).
    garrykravit
  • I know this is waaay after the fact, but try, 'coffee American or Americano'.
  • Amrit, thanks brother. I will definitely get in touch if I'm in London.

    Melissa, thanks! :)
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