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Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Grinch Watch

That would make a good series, but it's too late this year. Maybe next.

The other day VodkaPundit mentioned that he'd run down to the Starbucks drive-through for some coffee, and when he got to the front of the line he was informed that the person ahead of him had paid for his order. So he paid for the person behind him. With any luck, people are still in line down there, spreading a little Christmas spirit, he said.

The next day I read this in the local paper:

One woman's kindness to a fellow Starbucks patron resulted in more than a thousand others spreading the holiday-season generosity in this northwest Washington town.

...[O]n Wednesday, her good deed set off a chain of 1,013 customers paying for the next person's drink.

Well, how nice! Did this break out spontaneously, or had VodkaPundit's neighbors in Colorado heard about the Washington incident ("Wednesday" would have been the 19th), or what?

Fortunately, we have VodkaPundit commenter Chad to tell us that it was all a PR stunt!

So says the blogger at the oddly-named Story+Welch blog, anyway. He doesn't actually offer any evidence.

What's really amusing (and Grinchy) are the comments there. Fools! You haven't really given anything, because you got something in return! Don't you see that this only plays into the hands of Starbucks?? Er, even though they don't actually make any more money out of it and it's not like anyone is going to dash down to Starbucks just to participate. But they're a corporation, so they're evil! Eeeevillll! It's a good thing we have the perpetually-awakening consumers at that site to keep us from feeling even the smallest charitable glow about something like this. It might be bad for our moral fiber.

Me, I'm staying out of it, just to be on the safe side. Besides, I'm the kind of schlimazel who would get a free regular "large" coffee only to pay for venti triple-whipped skinny half-caff carbonara macchiatos plus poppy-seed scones for a carful of yuppy teenagers.

Merry Christmas, sheep!