A Love Supreme, Giant Steps, and Disappointment

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to stroll through the beautiful campus of Ball State University prior to an appointment. It was the perfect day to walk around campus as it wasn’t too hot or too cold. It was a lovely trip down memory lane. Of course, with age, some of the memories are becoming a bit foggy.

The appointment took place at a coffee house in the village. I ordered a mug of coffee and walked over to the air pots to make a selection. They had three offerings:

  • Colombian Decaf
  • A Love Supreme
  • Giant Steps

Now, we all know that I would quickly skip over the decaf because decaf is for sinners. However, naming coffee after John Coltrane albums is a bit vague. So, I asked the friendly baristas, “What’s the story with the John Coltrane coffee?”

This is where the disappointment sets in…Both baristas laughed and one said, “You are like only the second person in two years that has caught on to the whole Coltrane reference.”

Seriously? I’m only the second person who picked up on the Coltrane reference? Certainly not! I’m on the campus of Ball State University which has an incredible School of Music with an amazing jazz program (and, I’m not in the least bit prejudice). Certainly I’m not the second person. This cannot be! Muncie, at least in the area surrounding campus, is a decently cultured area. Certainly the folks who stop by this coffee shop own a Coltrane album or two. And, if they purchased a Coltrane album or two, chances are either “A Love Supreme” or “Giants Steps” would have been one of them. Certainly this reference has not gone unnoticed!

I’m sure BSU School of Music students drop in all the time. I’m sure BSU School of Music faculty and staff drop in all the time. It’s too convenient of a location for this coffee shop to not have high traffic from the School of Music. So, obviously, I’m disappointed that more School of Music folks have not, at the very least, acknowledged the Coltrane reference. Of course, maybe that’s not the case. Maybe School of Music folks skip the coffee shop in the village and settle for the coffee in the Coke lobby or even worse…go to Satan’s den (also known as Starbucks)…which would add to my disappointment.

Okay, I’ll cut them some slack. Maybe they caught the Coltrane reference and giggled a little. However, I remain disappointed because people should interact with their baristas!

In talking with the barista, it became apparent that not only do people not ask about the Coltrane reference, they don’t ask about the coffee itself.

I asked about the Coltrane reference because I wanted to know about the coffee. Is “A Love Supreme” some kind of blend? Is “Giant Steps” some kind of flavored atrocity? What is this John Coltrane inspired coffee I’m about to pour into my cup?

It appears that most folks don’t ask. They just walk up to the air pot and select whichever coffee they think has the most hip name. And, so I’m disappointed that people don’t show more concern about the coffee they are about to consume.

After listening to the description of each coffee, I decided to go with “Giant Steps”. Of course, that decision might have been influenced by the fact that when it comes to Coltrane recordings, I prefer “Giant Steps” over “A Love Supreme”.

So, the next time you find yourself at The Cup, if they have “Giant Steps” or “A Love Supreme”, be sure to bug the barista about John Coltrane. They will appreciate it and I will be less disappointed!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s