My friend Chris (aka The Sultan of Sag Harbor™) came up with the idea that all immigrants and people with difficult to spell names should create their official Starbucks names. As a person with a name that is awkward for American ears, I totally feel his pain, and I am so tired of being called “Tall Vanilla Latte” every time I place the order in Starbucks. My name is Katya (pronounced as ‘Ka-ti-yah’), but for the indifferent Starbucks baristas I will go as ‘Kat.’
My decision to create an official Starbucks name was not sudden. I have had so many versions of my name written on these white paper cups that I could probably publish a photo book containing all the spelling games Starbucks employees have been playing with me over the years of my coffee addiction. But I don’t want to be one of these people that post every misspelled cup on their Facebook or at such blogs as Starbucks Spelling and The Starbucks Name Game. I am just a positive person that needs to come up with a solution. A solution which preferably would be just three letters long.
Prior to my Starbucks name change, I was surprised that many Russian models and socialites would change their names to the inauthentic ‘Kat.’ After six years of living in New York, I understand that this easy and playful nickname is not the worst solution. Especially if you take into consideration how much coffee models drink in order to suppress their appetite.
My Official Starbucks Name debut went quite well, and I immediately announced on my Instagram that the problem with spelling seems to be solved. But this prediction was premature. Last week me and Vital Agibalow, who also has a difficult name to pronounce (‘Vee-tal’) went to the East Hampton’s Starbucks, and here is what we got:
Compared to my previous unsuccessful experiences with strange names written on my cups, this one was acceptable. Thankfully, they did not call me ‘Brat,’ ‘Katiyakh’ or ‘Katcha.’ Considering that the barista that was passing coffees to people actually called me “Kat,” I guess it was progress … or at least the closest version of my official name that I ever received in Starbucks.
I can’t say that I regret my decision to pick an Official Starbucks Name. At the end of the day, the spelling mistake that the baristas have left is to write my name like I am a cute four-legged pet. Of course there is room for ‘Cad,’ ‘Kad’ and ‘Cut.’ But you know what? I will take Cat! The least letters your name has, the closer its spelling is to reality.
Top: J. Crew Swoop Top in Punk Floral (sold out, similar here) | Skirt: Incity Silver (similar here; also seen here)
Shoes: Ivanka Trump Carra 2 (also seen here) | Clutch: (similar here) | Sunglasses: Coach (similar here)
Ring: Faux Pearl Bauble Ring | Lips: L’Oreal Colour Riche Lipcolour in Raspberry Rush
Nails: Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear Nail Color, Mellow Yellow
Photos by Vital Agibalow
What is your Official Starbucks Name? Are you getting annoyed when Starbucks baristas misspell your name? Share your stories about the funniest name Starbucks employees called you and receive a $20 Starbucks E-Gift card from me. The rules are simple: 1. Follow me on Twitter at @StyleSprinter or Instagram @StyleSprinter or like Style Sprinter’s Facebook Page. 2. Leave one comment below telling me about the funniest name Starbucks baristas wrote on your cup (do not forget to provide your real name so we can compare) OR email me a picture of your Starbucks cup with a funny spelled name on it at firstname.lastname@example.org. 3. Submissions are open until 11:59 pm on September 15, 2014. I will announce the winner on September 17, 2014. Good luck!