The Hot Chocolate Incident
Memo to the people who make the lids that go on to-go coffee cups, or in my case, hot chocolate cups:
You need to work on the seal between the lid and the cup. It works fine in low-stress situations -- sitting, walking, waving your cup around to illustrate a point. But what happens when the lid is put to the test? What if you're tense, driving, arguing, running?
I didn't get the name of the outfit that made the lid I slapped on this morning's hot chocolate, but if I did, they would be getting a disgruntled letter from me today. Everything was fine as I walked, slipped next door to Starbucks to get a lemon scone (with great satisfaction, I placed my Creighton's hot chocolate on the Starbucks counter to get my money. Sorry, no coffee for me. Just a scone.), and continued to my car.
Creighton's is a few blocks from my Zephyr Wednesday sales meeting, at which I have become dead man walking. I have five months to complete 3 deals, they've said. I am still considering whether that is realistic.
So I wasn't in the greatest mood to begin with.
I pull out and go to turn right onto Portola, one hand on the steering wheel, one on my hot chocolate. As I complete my turn, the lid pops up off of the cup. The hot chocolate, which has splashed against the lid during the turn, stays up, landing violently all over the inside of the Acura -- which, by the way, I now only drive on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. So in addition to the discomfort of driving a car full of pools of hot chocolate, I have the added burden of knowing that I must remove every single drop of liquid before returning the car to Sandra Bullock on Thursday.
By the time I completed my turn, hot chocolate was everywhere. It was on the steering wheel, all across the cd player, on the passenger's seat, in the console, on the gear shift, and only a little, thankfully, on my inexpensive Kenneth Cole Reaction pants. I slammed the cup down into the wet cup holder and wished I was a swearing guy, all while being careful to drive sensibly.
Since I am not a swearing guy, I was limited to "Shoot!" and my dad's famed "Aaargh!" as I wrung the hot chocolate out of my hands. Since it had coated the steering wheel, my hands stuck as I drove, stickiness being my least favorite of feelings.
I arrived at my meeting disgruntled, with small brown spots all over my hands and wrists. My cup of remaining hot chocolate sat smugly in the cup holder, hiding about 1/4" of hot chocolate that had gathered underneath, creating a small replica of the mustard-off pools they have in Katroo. Again, I could only exclaim "Aargh!"
It is bad enough to be a dead man walking at a work meeting. Even worse to enter that meeting late, with hot chocolate dripping off both hands, then place your cup on the table only to have it leave thick, dark rings. Because I was late, I had to park a block away, thereby short-circuiting my plan to grab some wet paper towels and wipe off my interior. Instead, the car sat, growing stickier by the moment.
It plagued me all day. During our Wednesday tour of homes, I rode with the very thin, ultra marathon-running Metro Rob, enjoying myself and working out my present career crises. Still, occasionally I would remember. I'd picture the inside of my car and grind my teeth. When we completed the tour, it was like waking up the morning after being dumped by your girlfriend. "Ah, everything is fine... No! That's right! There is hot chocolate all over the inside of my car!"
Happily, the offending fluids have been eradicated. I returned home and immediately ran up, grabbed a wash cloth and began furiously wiping down the Acura's interior. Sandra Bullock will be none the wiser. My cheap pants will survive, and the Jawa thought the entire deal was gut-bustingly hilarious.
That's the kind of respect I command.