Starbucks is closing all of its locations today. All 7,100 stores across America.

Did that just make you panic?? Admit it. You started reaching for the defibrillator, didn't you? The thought of a world without Starbucks made you rethink the very nature of the universe.

Well, they are closing today. But for only 3 hours. Bear in mind that 3 hours for most of us equates to 9 weeks for the hardcore coffee lovers out there. What on earth will they do when the doors close at 5:30pm local time today for THREE HOURS?

That's up to them. Maybe they can get their fix earlier or later in the day. The country should survive this. It might, anyway.

But why are those doors closing for so long? Because the "baristas" are being trained and
re-trained on the finer points of customer service and coffee production. It's all part of the Seattle based company's refocusing on the customer experience.

Don't get me wrong. I love a good Frappuccino on a hot day. Heck, I drank one the other day and it was 40 degrees outside. They are tasty, yes.

But let's stop this whole nonsense that making the drinks is somehow analogous to building a dining room set or cracking enemy codes.

It isn't. I used to make many coffee beverages when I was in high school working at a movie theater. Some drinks were trickier than others, maybe, but none of it was rocket science. And giving someone the title of "barista" is frankly ludicrous.

You make coffee!! Not that it's a bad thing. Millions of people would sink into the sea without their daily cup of caffeine. But let's not make it fancy and all!

Why is making a coffee drink at Starbucks any more difficult for the server to make than a taco is for the server at Taco Bell? It isn't. You have the recipes in front of you or memorized and it's the same drink over and over and over again. Sure, people throw you for a loop and ask for customized drinks. But still. It's not curing cancer.

You don't see the guy at Burger King with a tip jar, do you? Why not? Isn't he worthy as well? That's another thing that makes me crazy. You nuke a breakfast sandwich for me, pour coffee into a cup, and then hit me with a huge tip jar at the drive in window?

I don't think so.

I'm glad I got that off my chest. Now go run off to Starbucks. You've been warned. Three hours is a long time to go without a designer cup of coffee. But remember. Just breathe, count to 10, and know that all will turn out alright.