Thursday, March 11, 2010

milwaukee. barista's. why the hell do i do this?

so i'm back in milwaukee. which is a good thing.
i'm here for a few reasons. the primary one being to judge the great lakes barista competition. and the second is to just catch up with some of the very good friends that i made during my time here.
maybe the first reason was simply the best way i could justify coming back to hang out with some very good people? maybe not? it doesn't matter. i'm here. regardless of the reason.

it kinda caught me off guard a little. i flew in last night. bumpy as all hell. after working a long day in the cafe. and as i was coming over the hoan bridge there it was. the milwaukee skyline.
now i'm not being a knob. i know, compared to the city in which i now reside, the skyline isn't anything that special. but there is something about it. or there was last night. when i saw milwaukee i got really excited to be back. genuinely excited. it was nice. unexpected. but really cool.

barista's are rad. they just are. or rather coffee people are rad. i spent the entire day with a bunch of them. professionals. enthusiasts. barista's. owners. and alike. the certification to become a united states barista competition regional judge is an all day affair. it always is. i've done it a few times before. and it never runs on schedule.
for a group of people who typically have to be up very early to open cafes across the country, when we get together, timekeeping goes out the window. weird.

after exams. discussions. calibrations. coffee. lots of coffee. some good. some bad. we were done. this year we have a huge pool of judges. which is also rad. because now maybe i won't have to judge every single competitor. its not that much fun vibrating from too much espresso for the next three days. the coffee shits suck too.

why do i do this?
because i've found something that i love doing. i've found an industry that i want to be a part of. an industry full of people who are just as passionate as me about what they do. its not just a part time job or something to do until a real job comes along. this is what i, and we love. its what we do. and giving up a little bit of my time to help promote this industry? i love that too.