What Do Starbucks, Gertrude Stein & Rocco DiSpirito Have In Common?

14 Mar

I worked from home today.  I will be doing this for a time.  In place of my daily trip to Starbucks on the way up to my office, I bought myself this reusable Starbucks cup and made my own tea.  I bought this before I bought paper or ink or a telephone.This got me thinking about the significance of logos in our everyday – how a logo can act as a constant when other things are unrecognizable.  (Maybe this is why I like Starbucks so much – it’s about home.)

Also, my reusable cup has the newest Starbucks logo, which I love.  I think the logo itself is nice-looking but it’s more about the progression of the logo – amazing.

Anyway, it’s also fascinating how this is image is now another word for coffee.  Like apple is another word for computer.

So then this got me thinking about Gertrude Stein, and a story I heard about Picasso’s portrait of Gertrude Stein.  Apparently, in the early 1900’s, Picasso attempted to paint Gertrude Stein (they were friends; they lived in Paris at the same time).  She sat for the portrait over 80 times but Picasso was never satisfied with his work and he abandoned the project.  Years later, he painted Gertrude Stein from memory and arrived at this still-life, of sorts (not in the sense of a fruit basket but of the still, expressionless face).  When Gertrude Stein saw the painting, she liked it but remarked that it looked nothing like her.  Picasso responded, “It will.”  In other words, he knew his work – and his painting of Gertrude Stein, specifically – would be bigger than his writer-friend herself would ever be.  This painting is another word for Gertrude Stein.  I’ve always loved that story.  Finally, Shira and I met Rocco DiSpirito at his restaurant, Union Pacific (now closed), in New York City when I was still in law school.  It was his mom’s birthday party and he invited us to join them.  After, I sent him a thank you note and for some reason that I can no longer remember and will likely never figure out, I told him that Gertrude Stein story in the card.  Weird.

The answer is nothing.  Me, I guess.


4 Responses to “What Do Starbucks, Gertrude Stein & Rocco DiSpirito Have In Common?”

  1. Shira March 15, 2011 at 1:42 pm #

    You are a wonderful writer. Keep writing in this world

  2. Fabianne March 15, 2011 at 6:55 pm #

    I think this is my favorite post. I love the new Starbucks logo too. Before I saw it, I read an article about how they were about to unveil a new logo, and people they surveyed hated it. What were they talking about? It’s so clean and modern! Anyway, great post! I love simple stories about accomplished people.

    • Cindy March 24, 2011 at 12:47 pm #

      Fab and I were just talking about the logo! Love Rocco!

  3. Brad Golden March 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm #

    Great post!!!
    Thank you for pointing this out.

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