I see I'm not the only one who's noticed this trend at Starbucks - getting coffee there is slow, slow, slow. (Link to the Boston Globe's Business Filter blog.)
I think they need to have an express line in which no drinks over three syllables in name length can be ordered.
I love coffee - good old coffee. I also like traditional espresso drinks like cafe latte. I'm always kind of stunned to hear people order a peppermint no-whip skim latte with extra foam. What the heck is it?
Part of the brilliance of Starbucks is that they have so many candy-in-a-cup drinks that they can now appeal to people who actually don't like coffee very much, but like that coffee shop experience (in the sort of bland way that Starbucks provides it). It does, however, make the order process a bit long.
Part of the irritation of Starbucks is that they're so focused on those drinks that at my most-frequented Starbucks (in Houston's Montrose neighborhood) I can't order a latte without getting a full press sales effort to "upgrade" it to the latest flavored concoction (which has led me to explain to the employees there, "I like coffee. Real coffee. That tastes like coffee.").
I think they see me as a crank.