Day 51, coffee hissy fit, ILF drive-by

Sunday, 1/20/2019

Did the NYT big puzzle in record time, 26:19, yay me. I’m using a new approach to crosswords and it is working well.

Headed out at 8am for coffee. Drove to Baron Barista, because it’s close to The Avant on El Camino, which I want to eyeball. Alas, at 8:15 they were very apologetic that their pastry order hadn’t arrived. As an almond croissant was the whole purpose of my visit, I smiled and said “sorry, bye”. Just down the street was a Starbucks. It’s an odd one, squeezed into a building that’s the shape of a skinny wedge of cheese. For some reason they have tinted windows with shades pulled down. It was almost too dark to read the paper. But they displayed almond croissants so I ordered one and a, quote, “Grande Dry Cappuccino”. The dude leans down and gets the pastry from below the counter and it’s wrapped in cellophane. Sigh, ok, I don’t complain. I pay and find a table with a little light and put down my paper and my hat and my jacket. And wait. There’s two guys and neither doing any coffee-related activity. Finally the one guy brings out my coffee, which was nice of him, except when I pick it up, it  weighs at least 8 ounces, it’s two-thirds full. I don’t say anything but I am fuming inside. If I wanted a fucking latte I would have ordered a fucking cup of hot milk with a dash of coffee, I think. And then, why am I here? To eat a stale pastry and have a coffee I don’t want? And I put on my coat and pick up my paper and start quietly out, quickly walk back and pick up my hat, and leave and drive to my usual P.A. Cafe in Midtown, thinking on the way what a gem of a place it is. The staff have been there forever; they bake all their pastries on site; they make your drinks as you request them. It gets noisy, true, but that’s because it’s a success and people love it.

After reading the paper I drive by

the Avant

It’s the place that charges $4000 more per month than several other ILFs including Channing House. I am not impressed with the exterior, other than a nice entry, the side exposures look like a motel. I don’t see the extra money on the outside, anyway. I wonder if they charge extra for off-street parking? Well, I’ll never find out, because I am verifying it is much too far from the nearest shopping street. It’s a good half-mile to California Avenue. So it fails at my first requirement. Which is a bit of a relief, frankly. I can finally stop wondering how they justify their rates.

I drive that half-mile to El Camino at Oregon, park, and walk around

Sunrise Palo Alto

an ILF that (I only now notice) also advertises “a special community for the memory impaired”. In fact, looking now at their web page, they really don’t bill themselves for IL, but rather for “personalized living options” and “continuing care”. Which I read as, more for the sick and the feeble, less for the independent.

Sunrise is a month-to-month place which — I only just now realized from Alan’s info sheet — also charges $8200/month for a 1BR unit. Oof! Well, to the eye it’s a decent looking building, fairly new. (Looks a little more like $8k than the Avant.) The ground-floor street corner is a large dining room. There are only a couple of people visible in it. The windows on the next corner reveal what is clearly the staff break room with several nurse-looking types chatting around a table. There appears to be an underground garage. Frankly, Channing House is looking better all the time. Well, time to head off to


The Cardinal women dominated WSU behind a career performance from Alanna Smith. Back home I polished up three remaining loose ends in my game. Next time I work on it, it will be package it as a stand-alone app.




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