It’s after midnight and eleven floors below and one block over some drinking establishment is hosting a competition to see who can butcher the music of White Stripes as loud as they possibly can. I have heard that Austin can get pretty loud but I never heard a thing last year. I was at the Radis-not a few blocks further from downtown, but these sounds coming from the street below can surely be heard across the river.

Knowing that enlisting the police wouldn’t do much in the land of Garagabandia, I called the animal shelter to report that somewhere below me a satanic cult was sacrificing cats by the hundreds. I could hear vehicles being dispatched as I left them my full contact information, starting with first name, last name: Ryan Irelan.

It makes sense that this is how my day coming to a close.

Earlier, while catching up on some work at Starbucks, a guy next to me was carrying on a full conversation, with himself. Topics included: Running for President against George Washington, re-writing the Constitution, Salvation via Jesus, Salvation via George Washington, and hanging people. After thirty solid minutes of hosting his own talk show he went outside to continue the debate while smoking a cigarette. Then he started to moonwalk, and then again, and again.

Last week Howard Schultz wrote a memo to his top management about Starbucks’ lackluster future. That second-to-last-word is my own and is used to refer to Schultz’s reflection that a lot of what was special about Starbucks, when they only had one-thousand stores, somehow got lost when they got to thirteen-thousand stores. After this afternoon’s coffee theatre I’d say nothing has been lost, it’s only changed. Instead of Starbucks being the “third place” it’s now become a drop off point for public transportation and field trips for the mentally unstable. Note to self: think before patronizing Starbucks locations right next to bus stops.