01.28-30.15: ANNIE TARWATER

"It's always best to extend the olive branch. Unless the person's a POS. Then fuck 'em."

I first met Annie at my very first job in the city of Chicago, a slightly grimy, not-too-hip-but-still-cool coffee shop on the northwest side of the city. This was the place which provided the catalyst for launching me out of the suburban, religious bubble I inhabited my whole life. It threw me in, gave me a little whiplash and cuts and bruises, but gave me some pretty cool scars in the process.

Annie was in her own transition when I first met her. She was a little distant and very cool so I was, of course, intimidated by her, even though she is a small-ish faery looking woman. That cafe ended up closing 8 months after I started working there and everyone scattered and Annie got a job at a new cafe down the road, which basically became the same place with all the same regulars and don't-give-a-fuck baristas. After a bout with a terrible cafe in another part of town, I reached out to Annie who worked at the new cafe and she got me the job there and it basically changed the course of my life with all the wonderful people I worked with there (many of whom are featured here :).

But Annie was like, this different person. She flitted and floated and giggled and laughed and her lightness was undeniable. She not only looked like a faery - she was one. She constantly showered everyone with affirmations while streaming Erykah Badu in the background. She ended up quitting the cafe (understandably so, as the careerspan of a barista in that environment is a testy thing), and ended up finding her calling working with rescue animals. She has definitely hit her stride and continues to spread glitter and R&B everywhere she goes.