I’ve recently noticed a trend of “speak” that has become so increasingly annoying to me, it makes me want to avoid conversation altogether. I’ve been calling it the ‘superior speak.’ Ya know, like when you ask a Starbucks barista for a “black eye” (a black eye, by the way, is a cup of coffee with two shots of espresso in it. Needed to make a Starbucks coffee drinkable. I even ask for a “bold blackeye” or else they’ll add it to that Pikes Place shit they try to pawn off on everyone. OH! Even better? Pikes blonde. As if Pikes wasn’t horrendous enough. Lulz.)


The “red eye” (one shot) and “black eye” are Starbucks speak. Google that shit. I’ve even been told when saying, ‘medium bold coffee with two shots, ristretto’ to just go ahead and say “bold black eye, ristretto.” Hokay, I can do that. But somewhere along the lines of Management (I’m guessing) they’re trying to get away from the secret menu. So now when I say, “bold black eye, ristretto” like a good little customer I get an entire production of the following:

Eye roll, open mouth wide and say, “uhhhhh, a what?” in that way where the ‘at’ in ‘what’ are increased by an octave or two. There is mostly likely some kind of break or stutter also so it actually sounds like this, ‘uhhhh, a, break a, whaat?!’ So what is said is one thing; however; what is meant is, “Dear Ms. Customer, I am no longer acknowledging to know what a Black Eye is and you are a complete dumbass for trying to use that phrase here anymore. I also am so glaringly superior to you that I will do everything in my power to make you feel like an imbecile for even attempting to order that here.” Sincerely, hugs and kisses, your Starbucks barista.

Hey barista girl? GFY. And while you’re at it, demand that additional training so you can understand what it means when someone in the drive through says “WITH CREAM.” See, it means that I want a little cream in my bold black eye. So when you hand it out and I ask if you’ve managed the arduous task of putting cream in a coffee, you completely understand the concept instead of saying, ‘uhhhhh, I’m sure it does’ with another eye roll but then it doesn’t.

I know, I pick on the Starbucks. But they are not the only one’s who do this. Now, it could be a regional thing. I get it a little less in Minneapolis but it still exists. The Seattle area barista’s are usually as efficient and friendly as they come but I don’t go to Starbucks there. In general; however; it’s happening all over, not just at the coffee shop.

First off, if eyes are ever rolled at me, I’m out. It is quite possible the most immature, aggressive form of communication that really only tells me that you have the self esteem of a rock and so need to put down everyone you come into contact with to possible eek out a drop of worth before you go to bed at night. People like that are to be avoided. Especially if I’m giving you money for a goods or a service.

Secondly, the stutter. I know people who stutter. While I never have, I spent ten years in speech therapy classes as a young’n to try to fix other speech issues I had. I don’t think they cured me, I just stopped caring.  Thanks a bunch speech therapist but I’ll take it from here and if people want to make fun of me for the way I talk, I’ll own it. Kthxbye. So to purposely stutter to try to appear more superior than others kinda baffles me. Dramatic stuttering doesn’t make you right, it makes you a tool. Don’t do that.

See, I can be right without being superior and I’ll always assume people want to enter a conversation agreement with just general respect and mirth (the word “mirth” isn’t used nearly enough anymore.) But an eye roll, a deliberate stutter followed by an “uhhhhhhhh” will actually not get you respect. It gets you one less customer/friend/ coach/whatever you want me to be in that moment to you. Cuz peace out YO! You’ll need to play those games with someone else.

So, to recap, Lake Superior in the picture above? Beautiful, dangerous; cold; black; sparkling; frozen; shipwrecks; cliffs; majestic, and worthy of respect on any given day. Superior attitude to make others feel as shitty as you do?


Lying has a kind of respect and reverence to it. We pay a person the compliment of acknowledging his superiority whenever we lie to him.

Samuel Butler

Training Log

About tosabarbell

For training opportunities at tosabarbell, call or text Juli at 320-296-9313. e-mail to At tosabarbell, I build relationships cultivated in a strength and learning environment. There is no 12 week magic pill program to strength but rather a lifetime commitment to be the very best and most useful human you can be. tosabarbell is a private, home grown gym with three lifting platforms; squat rack; prowlers; throwing implements; bars, bumpers and everything else needed for an effective strength and conditioning program. Straightforward barbell programming including the Olympic lifts; sound (read: not fancy bullshit) diet advance for weight gain or loss; and strong coaching will ensure you will meet your goals such as becoming stronger, more explosive, and better conditioned. I have been coaching teams and athletes for over 30 years. I grew up participating in various sports at various levels but was always drawn to those that require strength training. I have multiple local, national, and world records in the sports of Weightlifting and Highland Games Heavy Events as well as a combined total of 5 World Championships. My 5 years of training and coaching under Mark Rippetoe provided a wide range of influence from some of the top strength & conditioning and throwing coaches in the country. I will strongly encourage tosabarbell athletes to compete (and prepare you to do so.) However, tosabarbell is also for those who wish to be stronger and go through life feeling better. Matt WanAt is a retired Professional Strongman who competed frequently with Strongman Champions League in Europe. He played a year of D1 football with Iowa before concentrating on his Chemical Engineering degree in Iowa City. He is a native of Wauwatosa and still remains a staunch supporter of Tosa East. This blog will be a mixture of strength notes, coaching and nutrition tips, personal shit; bacon delicacies, and a whole lot of fun.
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