I usually avoid Starbucks. It’s not just that I prefer local shops, cafes and restaurants over chains—I’m also not crazy about their coffee. The beans taste “burned” to me. But, as they are incredibly popular, I know my opinion makes me an outlier. Once in a while I find myself in a Starbucks. Often it’s the place a business contact chooses for a meeting and sometimes it’s simply the only port in a storm.
It was a ‘port in a storm’ situation. I had time to kill before an appointment and it was too hot to continue window-shopping. I didn’t think much of it when the cashier wrote CANDY on the plastic cup, but when I discarded the cup a half hour later my mystery-spinning mind went into overdrive.
Not only did the straw contain my DNA, the cup had my name on it. It would be easy to lift the cup from the trashcan and place it anywhere—even in another Starbucks (there are so many). Could it be difficult to concoct a frame? Would it be easy to establish my whereabouts where I had never been? Given that I’m often without an alibi…. Um…
Maybe it’s time to try writing another genre? I see mysteries everywhere I look. Hehehehe… Imagining crimes is an occupational hazard.