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Starbucks has been all over the business sections recently, so I figured for my second throwback piece, I'd feature a feature I wrote on the Chantico for the Snider Scroll, my high school newspaper. Not being a consumer of Starbucks, I never had the pleasure of enjoying a Chantico, but it still saddens me to know it apparently has not been served for some time.

The reason I'm a journalism major and the reason I continue to write has a lot to do with Pamela O'Reilly and her acceptance of me into her newspaper class having not taken the prerequisites. I will always be indebted to her for whatever success I may find in writing. I believe this was the second or third story I wrote for her (circa October/November 2004) and it brings back some fond memories.

(I forget what headline preceded this article.)

Starbucks is cool. They are so cool, that they alone decide what is and what is not cool. Don't believe it? Who else could make paying six dollars for a cup of coffee cool? Arthur Fonzarelli couldn't even pull that off.

So what's cool now? Fat. That's right, Starbucks has created a new product called the Chantico, named for the Aztec goddess of the hearth. Pronounced (shank-tee-ko), this chocolate drink is steamed with cocoa butter and whole milk and a six ounce cup has 390 calories, 21 grams of fat, and 51 grams of the dreaded carbohydrates. It's like a candy bar without all of that chewing nonsense. Because chewing isn't cool.

Nutritionists advise against Chantico.

"This should be a very occasional treat--like maybe on your 100th birthday," Neal Barnard, the author of Breaking the Food Seduction, says.

Starbucks hopes that Chantico will bring in customers later in the day, a problem they continue to have.

Chantico will hit Starbucks' stores on January 8, 2005. The drink will proceed to make Starbucks 80 zillion dollars, thus allowing the company to finally take over the world.

Chantico is the newest of Starbucks imaginative/somewhat pretentious drink ideas. Drinks like the Komodo Dragon blend, for those who have never tasted a monitor lizard. Or try the Christmas blend, which combines Indonesian and Central American coffees with the secret ingredients of mistletoe and the souls of elves. Another delicious beverage to sample is the Ethiopia Yergacheffe, for something that tastes like it doesn't make sense.

If any of these treats sparked your interest in Starbucks, for the nearest location, look outside your window.

Chantico is not just a dessert; it is an attempt to further fatten up the American public. This is merely Stage One. Starbucks will introduce Chantico and the public will immediately be addicted. Starbucks will then design a treadmill. They will tell people the treadmill is cool and everyone will buy it. With the added profits, Starbucks will build a store on the sun so they can literally become the center of the universe.

Starbucks may be an evil conglomerate, but they must receive some credit. If Starbucks did not exist, office productivity all over America would plummet. Starbucks is responsible for waking up millions of people every day. Who would want to go outside knowing that the people driving to work did not get their morning caffeine rush? Teachers wouldn't be able to teach, police officers wouldn't be able to police, and soccer moms would become even more violent.

But it's not just enough to taste Starbucks; I need to hear them too. All the time. My wish was granted on August 3, 2004, as XM Satellite radio and Starbucks formed an unholy alliance.

"Hear Music, the Voice of Music at Starbucks, is dedicated to helping you discover your next favorite artist," the Axis of Evil said in its press release.

This partnership, at long last, puts an end to my once-ongoing problem. You see, I find it tedious listening to music, trying to decide what CDs to buy. I would much rather listen to and buy and do exactly what Starbucks tells me. They know what's cool.

Once a quaint little coffee shop at Pike Place Market in Seattle, Starbucks rose to uncharted levels. Uncharted because charts aren't cool. Starbucks says so.

(I even found one of the old sources I used for this story!)