Your Starbucks study sessions are ruining my dates

Go to the library you cretins

It’s official – romance is dead, and coffee shop students are to blame.

Picture the scene: a bright, sunny afternoon in Durham – but being Durham, it’s not without the cold, sharp bite of the wind on your uncovered face. Naturally you suggest to your date (did I mention you were on a date?) that you make a move into a coffee shop. Of course, you’ve the pragmatic excuse of seeking warmth – but you really revel in a more intimate setting, and around the romantic aroma of rose pistachio mochas and pumpkin spiced lattes. This can only go well.12787533_1011796058865959_96733203_o

After a few minutes’ deliberation you successfully navigate the complex array of available coffees. Once you collect your grande caramel latte with whipped cream and marshmallows (skinny, of course), you scan the room for somewhere to sit.

But as you’re looking around, a blush begins to creep up your neck as you fail to spot any free seats – 90% of which are taken up by Mocha Mollys or Flat White Freddies who, having long since finished their sugar-caffeine-milk mixes, are still hours away from finishing whatever project they require a “dynamic work environment” for on their invariably rose-gold Macbook pros.

Putting aside my envy of their superior computing devices, and undeniably greater financial freedom to spend the best part of a meal out on a pretty regular basis, there’s a serious point here.

12476915_1011837292195169_64044414_oThat is – quo warranto (by what right)? These aren’t study spaces – of which the university provides a great deal. And even if Billy B does end up clogged up with, eugh, freshers, there are plenty of underused areas such as CLC’s jazzy ‘techno café’, or the weird booths outside its lecture halls. You can even get Starbucks coffee at the science site now – truly, there are no excuses.

What is the innocent couple to do when they want to tune into those intimate coffee shop vibes and aromatic aromas, and they’re forced into some snide side-seating? You know your date’s absolutely fucked in the water if you’re forced to sit side-on, or in some ridiculous armchair sinking you into obscurity.

And suppose you do manage to get a seat, your attempts to have a conversation are inevitably met with a flash of cannon-fire; a broadside of dirty looks from behind those sumptuously skinny Macbook screens – as if to say “how dare you disturb my dynamic working environment?!” Your date is rendered limp, flaccid, and all in all about as desirable as a non-speciality latte.


I honestly couldn’t be more offended if they plastered pro-Trump stickers on their Macs: this coffee-shop-date killing business is a far greater affront to humankind than an evil and unlovable US version of Boris Johnson ever could be.

So next time you want to lock in to the Starbucks, Nero, or Costa, fuck off to the library so those desperate couples, yearning for seating that won’t cause their date to crumble like a lone cookie into a gingerbread latte, can finally catch a break.