About a month ago, I shadowed the jobs of members of the Starbucks Newsroom at Starbucks Headquarters. Yes, coffee heaven. Often when we imagine what something will be like, we tend to picture it better than how it is in reality. (I still consider myself a child in this aspect.) However, when I went to coffee heaven, I was out-imagined by Starbucks.
The bittersweet aroma of roasted coffee beans filled the air as I walked up to the elevator. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight—the eighth floor was where I was supposed to wait. Once I met with the Newsroom Director, we went straight into the newsroom meeting. Here, I met the rest of the newsroom staff, people with diverse interests and roles in the newsroom. The meetings started out with a delicious tea tasting. The staff talked about news ideas, stories they needed to follow up with, and new systems to make communication easier between the editors and the photographer.
A small presentation was made by the photographer. She laid out a set of pictures. They were iconic pictures and posters, including "V-J Day in Times Square" and Joe Rosenthal's "Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima." She then took out another photo she took of a soldier smiling so widely you naturally wonder what he is looking at. I saw the humanity in her photos—something spontaneous, mind-boggling, and hauntingly beautiful. As a musician, an artist, and a performer, I saw the members of the newsroom and their souls shine through their work. Their work, their life, and their being was their art.