leaving aside the sober implications of the mermaid closing for three hours today (how badly do their baristi need training?), it’s worth noting the nimble and complementary (with an “e”) approach of c-n-c’s hudgens, who’s serving all-free spro during the same time period.
on its surface, a tactical move to snag new customers looking for a fix with the virtues of superior taste … the meta-narrative, though, suggests a subliminal ante-upping. as in, “we may not be a global mega-chain, but we can sacrifice three hours of revenue too!” so there.
UPDATE: there are, um, alternate theories abounding about today’s Great Outage.
“2) Determine if the carefully selected music makes patrons feel as if they are having a genuine urban experience flavored with an indie spirit, or an indie experience flavored with an urban spirit. It’s a subtle difference, granted, and if anyone doesn’t understand, perhaps it’s time you found another job? Mmmmkay? Okay, baristas, does anyone know why we play free-form noodly jazz at 8:45 AM, even though the entire genre of music makes people think of smoky nightclubs were all the musicians wear sunglasses are refer to each other as “cats”? Right: because it makes people feel hip. We used to play happy shopping music at barely perceptible volume, but too many people asked if it was meant ironically.”
UPDATE: b-mag editrix sarah allen, of course, extrapolates the larger “clash” of coffee cultures getting so much press today … and the wave of top-tier establishments retaliating to the great outage with freebies.