By Ashley Rodriguez
10 . 19 . 2016
I like listening to stories. Once, a co-worker told me about how he takes ownerships of chose his profession: barista. This is something I’ve always struggled with, and for a long time I hated telling people I worked in a coffeeshop. I wouldn’t necessarily try to hide it, but I’d certainly try to exaggerate it or make it sound fancier. My co-worker was a slightly older barista, and instead of trying to justify the coffee profession or embellish his title, he simply tells people he makes coffee. Permanently.
The term ‘permanent barista’ is meant to honor those who have chosen to be baristas. Who are unapologetic about their jobs, and are working tirelessly not just to do something else in coffee like be a roaster or move off the floor, but also to be the best at their jobs. I want to highlight the stories of those who interact with customers everyday, and who fight to make their cafes better spaces to engage with.
Every barista collects stories, and I want to hear from the myriad members of our community. Sure, there are leaders with interesting and relevant topics, but I want to hear from those who don’t always feel like they hear their stories told, from those who maybe aren’t the faces of their companies or in charge of making decisions. Baristas are our front lines, roasters are our craftspeople, and everyone in between makes it all happen. I want to hear from every corner of our diverse population.