it is ironic that I am sitting at a Starbucks, located some street named after garth brooks that appears to be in the middle of nowhere Oklahoma and am about to get some ick off my chest from a few days in Las Vegas with the greed, hustle, and a precursor for what happens when you let runaway debt control your business model. basically, you pray that interest rates don't go up and/or consumers don’t wise up. what does this have to do with Starbucks? simple…go try to use your loyalty card, reload it, and or use your rewards. you can't. the casino starbucks are all part of the money and soul sucking machine called corporate las vegas casino's.
what does this have to do with garth brooks?
he was one of the few entertainers that tried to keep his ticket prices within reason to his fan base. as far as I know, he doesn't sell his tickets to a broker, who marked them up 100% and then resells them using a different currency with employees that move half as fast as his normal crew and telling his fans all the loyalty rewards they have accumulated are worthless at his shows and makes them all pay a VIP fan license, for the right to pay for a VIP meet n greet photo op?
(forgive my sarcasm, but I think back to Lemmy commenting on the state of live entertainment these days and shake my head)
what is so sad about this is that a cup of coffee in Las Vegas strip – had different price points for, and might cost as much, if not more than a cup of coffee in Switzerland. I don’t expect my Starbucks card to work there, but I did not expect it to not work inside the united states.
a part of me wants to write to the founder of Starbucks, but the truth is, I don’t think he would care as he tries to steer his giant ship in waters where shareholders want shorter term ROI over the long-term health of a company.
another part of me wants to write to the CEO' of the Las Vegas conglomerates who are trying to figure out their path from debt loads and their own golden parachutes and stock options with OPM, it appears the old “roll up” strategy for scale is the game being played. I mean all Las Vegas really is anymore is a bunch of boxes with the same ingredients inside with a different package and theme on it. even Cirque du Solei, who I was forbidden to talk to when I worked at Feld entertainment has its issues with growth and “new” versus “just stick another licensing deal over some brand name act.”
but that was my analogy of what Las Vegas has become via a cup of Starbucks coffee. right now, I am in Richmond, Indiana where a road sign on the highway was emblazoned with a Starbucks logo that advertised a warm cup of coffee on a cool fall morning as I drive across the country.
what it didn’t say is that it is a few miles away from the highway to find the “Starbucks” and nowhere near the road. so, I wonder, “who and how did they get that logo on a highway sign?”
but "Alles gut" (if you want to learn German, that means "all is good") – as I am hearing two people speak Dutch and I had to laugh at how they put the American accent into their spoken English with this part of the world. they had a good-natured giggle at how the American service worker in Starbucks who hasn’t enjoyed their morning coffee sounds like.
what can I say, I am not sure if am grateful the robots are coming to take over so much of our labor force, or am I sad, in that I wonder “what will people actually do for work soon?” that lab in the middle of nature is looking like a really good idea today.
forgive any disjointed thoughts from too many miles and too little sleep. I realize why few people actually would make it in live entertainment as a career. it isn’t that they couldn’t do the work, but it is the hours and the perpetual motion that would have many say, “I can’t do this.”