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Christmas coffee mug December 22, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Holidays, Kitchen & Bath, Smiley.
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Christmas coffee mug. From my personal collection.

What would the winter holidays be without a hot beverage in a holiday mug? Whether you enjoy hot cocoa, hot tea, hot buttered rum, hot glühwein, or — like I do — hot coffee, you need a holiday mug to drink it from! And in my case, that mug had better have a smiley face on it!

Happy holidays in general, everyone! And if, like the smiley on this mug, you believe in Santa Claus, then Merry Christmas.

And to all a good night! 🙂


Dunkin’ Donuts coffee October 24, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Food, Smiley.
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Dunkin' Donuts coffee. Photo taken April 2010.

I’m a bit of a coffee snob, and while I’m sure that Dunkin’ Donuts coffee tastes just fine, I prefer to eschew big brand names in favor of buying local roasts. So I can’t tell you if this “Toasted Almond” coffee would actually make me smile. But I certainly love the packaging!

Smiley simulacrum: coffee burner September 12, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Kitchen & Bath, Simulacra, Smiley.
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My coffee burner. Photo taken August 2011.

If you’re new to this blog, I should tell you now that I love coffee. If you’re a long-time reader, I should tell you now that this is not the last coffee-related smiley you’re ever going to see. What can I say? Coffee makes me smile.

Even when spills over the pot and burns on the hotplate. Which, apparently, makes the hotplate smile, too. 🙂

Reader-submitted “smilin’ dark roast” simulacrum July 18, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Food, Reader submission, Simulacra, Smiley.
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"Smilin' dark roast." Submitted by Locrian Rhapsody.

My Canadian friend from back in Abu Dhabi, who online goes by Locrian Rhapsody, knows I love coffee at least as much as I love smileys. So when she found this grin in her coffee grounds, she sent the photo to me!

Thanks, Locrian! Hope the cup was as happy as the grounds!

Have a smiley you’d like to share? Check out the “About” page for info on how you can send me an email!

Flower pot June 30, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Decor, Smiley.
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Smiley flower pot. Photo taken in Portland, OR, 30 June 2011.

This morning my wife and I went strolling around our new neighborhood and stopped into Caffé Brioso in northeast Portland. The coffee was good, the barista extremely friendly, and while the atmosphere was a bit austere, the big red chairs we sat in were nice and comfy. But the highlight, for me, was finding this happy little flower pot — full of tiny orange roses — sitting on the counter behind the bar.

Here’s a close-up of the flower pot:

Smiley flower pot (close-up).

As I leaned over to snap the photo with my phone, the barista kindly moved it closer and asked why I needed the pic, so I told her about this blog. Turns out, she studied happiness and positive psychology at Portland State University, which led us to a quick conversation about cultural happiness, positive thinking, and the government of Bhutan!

All in all, a very pleasant way to spend a morning. 🙂

Happy Valentine’s Day February 14, 2011

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Art, Holidays, Smiley.
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For as long as I’ve known my wife, I’ve been drawing smiley faces on the cards I give her. Anniversary, birthday, Christmas–you name the event, and I’ve put a smiley on a card for her.  It’s become a variation on my signature, so when she sees my little smiley face she knows it’s from me.  Usually, I surround the smiley with a heart, because she is, after all, my wife.  This is of course most prevalent during Valentine’s Day, when I will often add smileys to existing hearts on the card and “seal” the envelope with a smiling heart.

Poster for the 1953 film Lili, from Wikipedia

I’m not the only one who does this.  Hearts have been happy for decades (the Wikipedia entry on the smiley currently includes a movie poster from 1953’s Lili, which shows not only the traditional smiley-in-a-circle but also a smiley in a heart), and I could have included a whole post of smiling-heart clip art.  But this year is a bit special for my wife and me, since it’s our 14th Valentine’s Day together.  The conjunction of 14 years on the 14th of February feels distinctive, so I felt this more personal post was better suited to the day.

So yes, that is the card and envelope I gave my wife today.

Today, spread a little love while you’re sharing your smileys, and help make the world not only a happier but also a more loving place!

BONUS: I like to make my wife special coffee drinks, like cafe lattes and mochaccinos, but I’m no barista.  So when I want to make shapes with cinnamon or chocolate on the foamy surface of her coffee, I have to use a template, which I cut out of cardboard.  The other day, I was straightening up our coffee area in the kitchen and tossed two of my templates, the heart and the smiley face, together on the counter.  Later, I realized they’d landed like this:

Heart and smiley templates, cut from the cardboard of a Linda McCartney veggieburger box.

I swear it wasn’t on purpose–they just landed that way.  🙂

Benno Mélange, Viennese specialty coffee December 16, 2010

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Food, Travel.
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Benno Mélange, Viennese specialty coffee from Cafe Benno, Vienna, Austria. Photo taken December 2009.

This is the Benno Mélange, a specialty of the Café Benno in Vienna.  The mélange is a kind of cappuccino particular to Vienna, and the Benno version always comes with this smiley face in cocoa on the foam.  It’d be delicious even without the smiley, but seeing that grin looking up at me made the coffee taste even better!

Here’s an overhead view, and a shot of me with my smiley:

BONUS: Coffee Pot Films August 24, 2010

Posted by Samuel Snoek-Brown in Smiley, Web smileys.
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Logo for Coffee Pot Films, Irving, TX. http://vimeo.com/coffeepotfilms

Earlier today, I was nosing around Facebook when I stumbled across a combination of my two favorite things:  Coffee, and smiley faces!  This is a small, local film group doing short films for the Web (much like my brother [shameless plug], Jon Snoek).  Plus, they’re a great excuse to pass along a pot of coffee and/or a smile to anyone looking for a morning pick-me-up.