“You should write a book.”
People have been telling me that for years. And I didn’t totally disagree, but writing a book seemed like a Pheidippidean task. One beyond my endurance, beyond my attention span, maybe beyond my abilities. But as we approach the 20th anniversary of The DoubleShot, I’ve started looking back over my career and thinking about all the crazy and remarkable things that have happened. I’ve grown and matured and found a deeper well of patience and a team that supports what I do. I’ve found a rhythm to life, and it has allowed me to stop and think for once, not about what I should be doing, but about what happened and how I got here.
And so I’ve written. I’ve written things that no one knows about. I’ve written things I’d forgotten about. I’ve never been a big talker (well, I talk big but I don’t talk a lot usually), and I don’t particularly enjoy telling people about things I’ve done. “How was your trip?” Ugh. Well, it’s all in there. I dug deep. I went back to the beginning, even earlier, and I explained my thoughts, my experiences, my perspective. I’m fortunate that I started journaling in my early 20s and have filled up nearly 30 diaries with a bazillion words describing everything from the mundane day to my wildest dreams. So I had that to reference when trying to recall how or when something happened.
But it’s more than the story of my coffee career. This is a book that will tell you what coffee is, where it comes from, where it came from, how it gets from tropical farms to your coffee table. I’m attempting to lay out everything you need to know to really appreciate coffee. So that, whether you’re brewing bad grocery store coffee or sipping on some of the finest beans in the world, your coffee experiences will be better by being fully informed.
I want you to understand how I think. You’ve been looking at me for years wondering what the hell is going on inside my skull, and I couldn’t explain it. But I’m going to explain it. I’m going to tell you how I learned to run and how that taught me to run a business. I’m going to explain what it was like living without utilities for three-and-a-half years. Why I slept in a plastic chair on the streets of Long Beach. How I barely kept from peeing my pants with a pistol pointed at my forehead in Guatemala. And I’ll tell you what I learned from all those experiences, and more.
It’s not just my story, though. This has been a group endeavor. My purpose has always been to serve great coffee to you. Without you there is no DoubleShot. Without you I have no purpose. So I wrote this book for you. It’s an extension of the coffee. It’s a rear-view explanation of all the events you may have been a part of, or wondered about, or heard rumors about, or didn’t know about. I’ll fill in all the gaps. Whether you’ve been coming to the DoubleShot since the beginning or just a couple years, if you’re a fan, you’re Folk.
Just the other day I parked my car and walked up the street to have lunch, and a clean-cut young guy was walking toward me. Straight toward me. Awkwardly bee-lining it for me. When he got close, he told me I make the best coffee on the planet. He told me he was a huge fan, and had been coming in since we were in the old location. I’m probably better at reading negative reviews than I am at taking compliments, so I clumsily thanked him and said something like, “We try hard.” But that guy is folk. He’s why I wrote this book. Maybe you’ve been buying coffee from us online. Maybe you’ve never heard of DoubleShot Coffee Company. That’s ok too, because no one ever heard of us until they did. And when you know, you know.
Yes, this is a book project, but if coffee is a big part of your life (even more if DoubleShot is a big part of your life), this is a field guide for you. I promise you’ll enjoy it.
Your name should be in there.