What nots of a former coffee house guy

Welcome to random bon mots from a guy that used to own the best darn coffee house in Union City, CA

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Donations and Recycling

What do you do with all the old clothes, shoes, books etc you have or want to get rid off ? Drop it off at Paddy's, and we will donate it to Centro De Servicios, Union City's shelter. They are a great organisation staffed by wonderful people who love helping the down trodden in society.

Periodically, we designate one day, where you can drop off your used electronics or your spring/fall cleaning stuff, and we co ordinate with both Centro De Servicios and Tri-Ced Recycling, as a convenient option for the community.

We are also a drop off spot for your old batteries, cell phones etc. If you have old medicines, you can drop them off at Nakamura Clinic on Alvarado Niles Road, or at your local hospital. If you have old printer cartridges, you can drop them off at any Cartridge World or any major electronic appliance store like Best Buy or Office Depot etc.

The Princess Club

We are doing this for the 2nd year now. We are inviting all our customers to donate their used formal wear to the Princess Club of James Logan High School. This is a club that helps out the underprivileged students attend the prom with nary a worry.

So if you have old formal clothes that you cannot fit into now, either because you have now become a pale shadow of what you were, or have attained a very well defined figure, you can drop off those clothes at Paddy's, and we will hand it over to the Princess Club.

Coffee -- good or bad ?

Studies and legends abound about coffee being good for your health or bad for health. Here's one article

Anyone have any more to contribute ?

Disputing a fallacy

Paddy's Coffee House sells coffee by the pound, whole beans or ground. And contrary to the legend, you never store them in a refrigerator or a freezer. You store it in an airtight container in your larder.

We find out your consumption rate and we sell you an appropriate quantity. That way we ensure you taste our good coffee.

Tales from the Vault

We are a coffee house choc-ablock full of teenagers and young adults. And in our usual uninhibited fashion, we talk to them. There was this really nice young kid, going through a very stressful home situation.

Broken relationship with the family, lived on the streets, had a job but was wandering meaninglessly through life. We talked and counseled the young kid, pointing out the maze that can be the pathway of life. There are forks to be taken, dead ends reached, but through it all, never to get lost in the ultimate goal and that is to be a good human being.

Had not seen the young kid for a long time, then word reached us that the plunge was taken and the US Army had a new recruit. Every time when a call was made to friends, they were constantly reminded to come and thank us for showing a troubled youth the way of life. And every time the friends come and tell us, we cannot but get emotional.

Are we just a coffee house or are we more than that ?

Ills of the community

While we watch with pride the growth of the "coffee house" babies, what we also notice very sadly, is the rise in the ills of the teenage society.

We have seen a lot of teenage pregnancies, drug abuse and a monosyllabic withdrawal. To combat these and to spread awareness of the ills, we partner with the Filipino Youth Coaltion, have open mics, have the youth talk to the youth about the ills.

Have we been successful, we don't know ? But we have definitely learnt and are now aware that are organisations that deal with issues like this and we guide the youth towards them.

And we started, all we wanted was to brew coffee and tea. We have become a fabric of the community and we truly hope that this fabric is helping the community.

Joy to behold

Not only have we seen relationships made, broken, brokered, but we have also been privileged in welcoming, what we call "coffee house babies". Parents would proudly walk in, announce that they are expecting. Next thing we know, they walk in with their little one.

And nothing gives us greatest pleasure in watching the growth of the little ones. From being carried around in a portable crib to a stroller to their first steps, and pretty soon, we see them going to Alvarado Elementary or Eastin and then they are in Alvarado Middle School.

Likewise, we have seen students graduate from the Middle School to Logan High to college and now entering the professional world. At each stage, we have been honoured to talk to them, marvel at their growth and guide them in their moments of bewilderment.

Does this make us a fossilized institution ?

Tales from the Vault

Elderly couple come in toting one laptop. Really nice elderly couple. Not sure if they were coming to Paddy's, pre or post doctor visit. Nevertheless, husband powers up the laptop, starts doing his work, wife busies herself reading the newspaper or what have you. Blissful peace reigns for a couple hours.

Then it is the wife's turn to use the laptop. Husband sits on the other recently vacated chair. Wife starts using the laptop and we start hearing sounds from her laptop use. Turns out she is busy playing games. After a bit, husband interjects her for something, gets yelled at, "Can't you see I am busy playing games ? " :) :) Brought a smile to our features, reminds us so much of our household. Wife yelling at us when we interject and interrupt her during her gaming activities. Deja vu. Relationship is the same everywhere.

Tales from the Vault

We have seen quite a bit in our 8 years serving the community. There are some instances that stand out and without annoying or disturbing anyone, we will present the human face of the neighbourhood.

One memory that stands out vividly. Young man walks in, bleary eyed but happy, from welcoming their baby to this world. Some time later, our regular mid afternoon elderly customer walks in, alone and a bit down in the dumps. When I mentioned, the usual drinks Sir, he tears up, and says, Paddy, just one drink from now on. The missus passed away. Ah, circle of life.