I walked into the Pearl Cup for probably the last time in my life. I had a dream about its finality last night, and just had to go in today.
The first thing I saw? The hand written menu I created in my last weeks working there over 2 years ago.
When I first moved to Dallas from Oklahoma, the Pearl Cup was my first big person job after getting a degree in Studio Art (because what else do you do with a painting degree.....). I worked in coffee shops all through college, so it seemed like a safe next step.
It was weird being there because it's the same, and yet I'm so different. Oddly enough, it feels like I'm different because of it. The Pearl Cup was a place of transformation while transitioning into being a real person.
// It was my first job in management.
// The first place I showed my art after college.
// The shop I picked up my last two boyfriends, and about 50 first dates.
// I met my BFF Liz (& Poppi) there, and after a cappuccino bootcamp incident, she let me crash at her house (for way too long...) until I could get a place of my own.
// It was the first place where I had the proper tools to make good coffee.
// When looking around, it's probable that I washed very dish in that place at least 25 times.
// I met a lot of photographers sitting at cramped, wobbly tables trying to edit, and landed my first design job from one of them. That design gig (with Shaun Menary) landed me a job with WELD when Austin Mann was looking for someone to help establish a coffee program. It's also interesting to note that Shaun introduced the world, via instagram, to his now wife, Shannon (@bumpit) there.
// I met my fabulous Dallas Mom, Rosita here when she would come in with her Dolche fur (boyfriends in tail).
// Not to mention, I got to meet: most restaurant owners in town, a plethora of chefs and mixologists, artists, cute seminary students, cops (who helped get me out of tickets...), and probably about 80% of the people I know in Dallas.
So that place was pretty important to me.
As with any service job, it was exhausting, demanding, and the pay was hilarious…but it will always be a sweet memory. The Pearl Cup was my launching pad into adult life.
In the words of a current barista there tonight,
“Hey, at least we don't work at Starbucks.”
*It's important to note that only the original Pearl Cup on Henderson is closing...and I'm very excited to go back in there when Houndstooth takes over the space!*