A Weekly Coffee Break

The Louisville-Syracuse men’s basketball game was the topic of the conversation at the Dunkin’ Donuts on the South Side during this March 6 discussion between Bob Eudell and Don O’Leary, two regulars of the coffee shop.

“Syracuse is going to lose but it doesn’t matter because we already have an NCAA tournament birth,” O’Leary said.

The two friends come to the coffee shop every Saturday to sip coffee, read the newspaper and discuss local affairs. They come from different backgrounds. Eudell is African-American and O’Leary is Irish-American. Sports drew them together one morning and the two have been meeting to talk ever since.

“Sports are a reflection of society at large and communities in particular,” O’Leary said.

Eudell and O’Leary have always enjoyed the coffee, bagels and donuts at the South Side Dunkin’ Donuts but they have noticed an improvement in the service over the last eight weeks.  A new manager started at the location a month ago and the attitude and personality of the staff has improved, Eudell said.

“She runs a tight ship,” O’Leary said.

Yoshe Bibbs started working at Dunkin’ Donuts two months ago. Bibbs has a good feeling waking up in the morning and coming to work.

“I love to work here,” Bibbs said. “I like to interact with my peers and the team spirit that we have.”

Bibbs is friendly with her regular customers but doesn’t have a favorite.

“The Dunkin’ Donut shop is like a surrogate community center because there aren’t many in the area,” Bibbs said.

Eudell and O’Leary echoed Bibbs’ sentiment in regards to the community atmosphere at the coffee shop.  The friends enjoy the camaraderie at the coffee shop but don’t like the lines that sometimes form at the busy location.

“The service is usually good but it sometimes gets busy,” O’Leary said. “But it comes with the territory.”

O’Leary visits the coffee shops on Saturdays and Sundays but Eudell is there more often.

“I’m here everyday,” Eudell said. “I was here at five o’clock in the morning.”

— By Miguel Balbuena, Community Correspondent