Frivolous Monsters

Coffee Shop Decorations

It was in Costa Coffee that they once told me how as soon as Halloween is over, even before Guy Fawkes night occurs, Christmas begins. And so it was that I found them cracking out the festive takeaway cups again whilst, to accompany my drink through the large goldfish bowl windows, some wino with fancy trainers was quietly sleeping on a bench outside. The very spirit of Christmas, I thought… for the beginning of November.

Tramp Outside Costa Coffee

A couple of weeks later in Costa I had to admit that, even though it was still November, I was totally underwhelmed by their Christmas decorations consisting, as they did, of two shelf ends of cotton wool icicles, one string of bunting, and a small sign behind the counter which read: “Merry Christmas”.

I was told that their budget to decorate the shop was just ten pounds.

I couldn’t raise an eyebrow too high, though, because the only decorations that would appear at home that year, in the house of cats that had put the kybosh on trees and cards, were just three illuminated garden baubles hanging off the cat shed outside.

The spirit of Scrooge lived on.

Christmas Lights 2015

Unfortunately for us residents of Costa Coffee they had found the budget to fix the pointless light which was right by where I have to sit now, there being very few small tables available after the refit, because who really wants to share peripheral vision and play elbow hockey with a giant naked light bulb the size of your head? I had actually thought, previously, that someone had probably done it in intentionally.

It wasn’t so long ago that a barista had let slip the talk of the staff room, about how they kept mysteriously finding red hair, clumped together in fur balls, which regularity appeared behind this lamp. It left them wondering what was going on. As this occurred most days, I was told, I suggested that they were probably being haunted and that these manifestations were like ectoplasm from an ethereal realm.

That evening I remembered to check for myself, before I went home, and peering behind the giant naked light bulb with trepidation I found the advertising card stuffed with ginger hair. I got to thinking that if the staff collected enough of it, in an effort to bolster their paltry decorations, then maybe one of them could fashion some homemade tinsel out of it instead.

Costa Light and Hair


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8 thoughts on “Coffee Shop Decorations

  1. That is just kind of gross. People do all sorts of weird things when they think they can get away with it and don’t have to clean it up themselves. Ah, working in the customer service industry.

    • They do know who this is now, because she’s a daytime regular, who sits by the light, and has red hair so it’s all a bit of a giveaway.

      One of them has told me that they have dropped hints to her, and they thought that this put an end to it, although I think I took this (poor quality) photo after that.

      There are some strange people, but they do have a bin in Costa Coffee, a few paces from this seat, so it’s not like that’s the issue. Puzzling.

      • That’s what I would consider a weird territorial marking thing that people do. It’s not about having a trash can near by or not. It’s like a person moving chairs around in a room or at a table to make themselves feel more comfortable in the space, only more extreme behavior. I don’t understand why some people feel a need to leave behind some genetic component of themselves though. It is really fascinating. At least it is just hair and some kind of bodily fluids.

  2. I think I agree with Jami (above) on this and it’s a territorial issue. It might be because she’s a regular and feels that it’s her seat and doesn’t want anyone else sitting there. It’s quite a yucky thing to do though.

    • I know we all have genes that make us do odd stuff, and control us in a way, but I still find it odd. It’s not combing her hair and then leaving it on the table with your drink tray, but hiding it. Very odd. Plus that seems to me to be a lot of hair to lose every day. She must have a lot.

  3. I like the way you tailor your Christmas decorations to the cats! We limited the time we put up our inflatable nativity scene (yes, classy) between the two gum trees in the front yard because it scares the koalas.

    • More tailoring the decorations BECAUSE of the cats in the house. Over a number of years it shrunk, one year was shunted just into the porch, and then shrunk to almost nothing. I did quite like those three lights though.

      I never know if the “locals” would prefer to scare the koalas away whereas to us foreigners they seem majestically. I try and attract as much wildlife into the back garden as I can, but sadly no koala yet.

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