I told Layce that I wanted an English bull dog. (see her blog “I Just Got Played” for full explanation.) I got a cappuccino machine instead . It was my Valentine’s present. She didn’t have a gift idea so she was highly amenable to my plan B—a cappuccino machine.
Operating a cappuccino machine isn’t as easy as Starbucks makes it look.
First, we had technical difficulties with the “filter retention clip.”
“Did you read the manual?” I asked. I always read the instructions on everything, literally. You would not believe the stuff you learn from instructions. In fact, if I ever quit writing novels, I’ll become a technical writer and write instruction manuals.
“No.” She always says that. We make good partners because of our different methodologies when it comes to new kitchen appliances.
We eventually discovered that the filter retention clip was malfunctioning. With gentle twisting and turning, and a little brute force, we managed the get the clip working. Next we searched for cups to fit under the filter nozzles. I hadn’t realized that all our coffee cups were too tall.
“We’ll have to get some of those cute white porcelain cups—the elite liberal kind so we look posh,” I said.
“Yeah. I’ll add that to the stainless steel steamed milk pitcher that I had to order.”
“I’d like to start using fresh beans but we’d need a coffee grinder.”
“I thought we had one?”
“We did but something happened to it,” I said. (Em and I used it to grind up crayons for an art project. Don’t ever do this.) I changed the subject. “I want to learn to put those hearts and trees on top of the coffee.”
“And then you’ll want some of the fancy syrups to add to your frothy drink with the tree or heart shape.”
“I’d forgotten all about the syrups, thanks for reminding me. It’ll help me channel my inner barista. I might need a do-rag and green apron.”
“This is getting very involved,” Layce said.
“I need the appropriate accoutrements if I’m going to become a barista. It’ll be another one of my hobbies. Every afternoon as we read the New York Times and Vanity Fair, I’ll make us this excellent cup of perfectly brewed coffee.” I imagined myself wearing a do-rag and a green apron calling out “Layce, your amazing cappuccino is ready.”
“Your hobbies do keep you out of trouble despite the accoutrements.”
I ignored her facetious tone. “I’m going to research about becoming a barista. I’ll need to buy a couple of books.”
“I had no idea that a cappuccino machine was going to start a new obsession that requires so much stuff.”
“That’s what happens when you don’t get me a dog,” I said.
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