Monday, July 30, 2007

The Story Behind Kano's Coffee House

I just got home from work. My last day on the job. That job anyway. I have another one that will start in a few days. My old job had to go. I just wasn't into the culture of the place anymore. It was demanding, stressful, high pressure, hard physical labor and all for low pay.

I'm now 50 and have been working since I was about 7, picking berries and beans out in the fields during the summer. Then when I was 11 or 12 I got a morning newspaper route, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, 111 customers. At 16 came the canneries, sorting fruits and vegetables on the belt. At 18 the military and so on.

I'm tired of working for someone else and I crave Independence. About 5 years ago I quit my job of 13 years working in an institution for the criminally insane. My job title was Mental Health Therapist. A fancy name for the unglamorous, often ugly task of keeping order on a ward. Not a happy place to be.

One day I was badly injured from being attacked by a patient who decided to kill me for whatever delusional reason. I recovered for the most part minus 3 teeth and went back to work. Then I started wondering why I was working in a depressing place, dealing with violent people day in and day out. The job had a lot of the characteristics of being on the front line of a war that never ended. Never knowing what was going to happen and when. Never knowing if I was going to make it home in one piece.

Then I decided it was time for me to do work I really enjoyed and to be my own boss. Master of my own destiny. I packed up the family and moved to Texas from Oregon and opened up a coffee shop and art print gallery, Kano's Coffee House. Within 6 months I was out of business, my retirement money and life savings gone. 20/20 hindsight tells me it was a fools act. I was too depressed and desperate to make good decisions.

Unable to even pay the rent in the house we were living in I was faced with the toughest dilemma of my life. Completely unable to provide for my family.

We moved in with my Wife's sympathetic Brother and his Wife in Houston. (Bless you Juan and Raquel!) Our family of 5 lived crammed into one bedroom of a small trailer house for nearly a year. We were in effect a homeless family.

I worked a few various low paying labor jobs before finally giving up on the last material possession I owned and loved. My Sportster. I sold it with a promise to myself that I would get another one someday. With the money I moved our family back to Oregon where we belonged.

Since then I have managed to once again support my family, just barely, the credit card debts are piling up! I do have another Sportster, a shiny black 1200C. I still work for someone else but haven't given up on the dream of Kano's Coffee House.

Kano's Coffee House doesn't physically exist but it lives on in cyberspace. It's open for business, ready to serve anyone who walks through the door. Welcome!

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