Starbucks’ red cups are the worst things on campus at Christmas
Halloween has barely even finished and Starbucks has already released their annual red cups to mark the start of the behemoth that is “The Holiday Season”. Now in cafés across campus the white cups are being phased out and this year’s fleet of red coffee cups have been sent in to make the coffee addicts of the libraries feel a bit more festive.
As Christmas enters the hearts, minds and advert breaks of the nation, thousands of people are becoming more susceptible to the marketing endeavours of business like Starbucks and we’re no exception. The effect that Starbucks has on people is fairly plain, (just like the coffee that they’re drinking) people are becoming more and more basic and willing to splash out for that extra shot of Monin.
Over the next few weeks leading up to Christmas what you will find is a sea of red cups overflowing the bins of the SU, lecture theatres and libraries all over campus. They’ll be littered with reckless abandon on the downs, and all along Derby Road.
Hallward will be filled with mammoth queues of people loudly discussing what syrup they’re thinking about experimenting with and all the while Starbucks will be profiting from their new fad. Priced at around £3.50 a pop, these experiments in being very slightly different just aren’t worth it. I’m begging anyone who will make our lives miserable with the overwhelming stench of cinnamon and caramel to please give it a rest this year, it’s getting old.
The transition from pumpkin spiced latte to peppermint hot chocolate is not exciting. It’s not a big deal. Listening to people talk about how the red cup means they can now feel “properly Christmassy” as they leisurely walk between Psychology seminars is far worse than the rest of the year’s banal chat.
I dread the day that the leaves turn, the nights draw in and the red cups come out. You can feel the shift in the air. Everything becomes a little bit more twee, and not in the feel-good John Lewis way. It’s manufactured, it’s tacky and every year it’s exactly the same.
In a press release from Starbucks, VP of design and content Jeffrey Fields claimed “Starbucks has become a place of sanctuary [during the holidays]”. Forget family and friends, forget spiritual reflection, forget baby Jesus, what the people need is high blood sugar and the soothing sound of Macbook keys being aggressively slammed for tomorrow’s deadline. The obsession with Starbucks is too much, the seasonal cheer of Starbucks is just the feeling of wanting to spend money. Don’t believe the hype, even if toffee nut lattes are delicious.