Soucheray: No shots of pumpkin spice at the Crabby Coffee Shop. But that other shot? We all got it.

8May 2021

The Crabby Coffee Shop endured the last year about as well as can be expected. We lost money. Thank you for asking. Not surprisingly, our plans to expand have been dashed on the rocks of the pandemic, but we have applied for a hut at the State Fair on the grounds that even crabby people get lonely for other crabby people.

In our year of hanging on, we followed all the rules, just like other businesses trying to make a buck. We have the sign on the door about masks. And we encouraged social distancing, although that is not difficult with our crowd. Our crowd is predisposed to social distancing, which is why they favor our shop in the first place. When there are just a few of us in the store and we know we all have been vaccinated, we take our masks off. It is quite daring and freeing.

Joe-SoucherayWe believe in getting vaccinated. You might think that contrary to our very name, that we are obstinate and standoffish when it comes to governors and presidents telling us what to do. Not in this case. The people telling us to get vaccinated are smarter than the people who think it’s a Bill Gates chip-in-the-brain scam. I’ll take the advice of a doctor over a talk-show host or a podcast howler. I’ll take the advice of an old seasoned medical scientist over the crackpot faction of what’s left of the Republican Party.

Our ownership group got vaccinated months ago when it was still a formal process. We waited in line at convention centers and arenas. These days, there is no excuse for avoiding what is irritatingly called in the tabloids the jab. In fact, we have been asked by very important people in the government if we will agree to be a vaccination center.

Why not? Personally, I think it would be very hip to get vaccinated at the Crabby Coffee Shop.

“You mean that place where you can’t even get a pumpkin spice?”

“That’s the place.”

“Aren’t they all a bunch of conservative grumps in there?”

“You are confusing a quiet, mind-your-own-business atmosphere with political ideology.”

So yes, if we are needed, we will serve. It is unlikely that we will ever get to herd immunity, but we are willing to do our part to return to normal before we forget what normal even looked like.

To that end, the governor has turned down his beloved dial. Things are opening up. He has to open up. You can’t announce the return of the State Fair and still keep people away from a hockey game. Speaking of which, the NHL playoffs begin Tuesday. The Wild are in. SELL OUT THE DAMN BUILDING! Alas, we have to wait until May 28 for that dynamic of the governor’s dial.

We are still waiting for our State Fair application approval. It is unlikely to arrive. Over the years, some of us have applied to sell a variety of concoctions, including my famous bologna, tomatoes and onions served in a paper boat. That didn’t pan out. I think the Fair did me a favor by pointing out my potential liability for just the dry-cleaning bills.

We will be there with or without our hut. This state could not survive two summers in a row without the Fair. It would have done us in. We would lose our being, lose the very sense of ourselves. No politician, dials be damned, would take that risk. We don’t know why, and that unanswered question is part of the magical mystery, but the Fair is who we are.


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Author: Joe Soucheray

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