The long, hot summer may be over …

“How do I know?” you ask. Well, last Thursday night I went out for dinner. Hadn’t been out all day so Ihot assumed it was as hot as it’s been pretty much all summer. Wrong. When we got to the restaurant and were offered a table on the terrace we both decided it was way too cool.

Before you say anything let me cut you off: Yeah, I know one evening does not the end of summer make. But it was September 1 and we all know what that means.

The leaves will soon start changing colour, the days will get progressively cooler and shorter, pumpkin pie mix will Continue reading

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Day 19. Coffee Culture

I go out for coffee everyday.  I like to write in cafes.  I like the ‘buzz’ of human energy.

When I work I tend to zone right out.  Especially when the writing is going well.  So although I know there are other people there, I’m not really aware of them.  I have no idea when they arrived.  I don’t notice when they leave.  And I can’t tell you what they talk about while they’re there.

But from time to time I do look around.  It’s fascinating.  Different purveyors/brands definitely attract very different people.  And depending on the time of day, you may also find totally different types of clientele — at least much of the time.

Tim Hortons is as Canadian as the maple leaf.  Founded in Hamilton, Ontario in 1964, today it is a multi-million dollar franchise, best known for its coffee and doughnuts.   Although I’ve worked in advertising, I’ve never worked on the Tim Hortons account.  I’ve never seen one of their creative briefs so I don’t know who they would tell you their audience is.  I can only speak about what I’ve seen any time I’ve visited:

Go into any Tim Hortons, anywhere, and you’ll see your average Canadian. Ethnically diverse. Families. Parents with kids.  Multi-generational families — grandparents, with their kids and grandkids.  Seniors on fixed incomes.  Students on tight budgets.  Office workers.  Hard hats.  Policemen.  Some professionals.  Highway travellers stopping for gas, bio breaks and a coffee  on long road trips.   Shift workers, because so many of the stores, even in the city, are open all night.  But regardless of how they earn their living, they are hardworking, decent, looking for friendly service, a good cup of coffee and a price that cannot be beat.  It is not Continue reading