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CAMPUS CORNER'S "LIVING ROOM": Second Wind Coffeehouse

Photo courtesy Second Wind
Second Wind Coffeehouse is in Norman's Campus Corner district.
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NORMAN, Okla. -- College classes opened to a bitter winter wind for the University of Oklahoma on January 16.

As people made their way from one class to another, there were students seeking shelter from the freezing air. By noon, the temperature was 14 degrees and everyone looked like Russians marching into Siberia.

Campus Corner has many places to try. O’Connells and Logies for your stiff drink and better bar food, Hurts Donut for the sugar rush of a lifetime, and a string of coffee shops from one end of the campus to the next.

While people brace the cold walking towards the campus, they would be inclined to walk onto Campus Corner. There, in the middle of it all, sits a tiny blue building with a hanging white and pink sign of a windmill.

It reads “Second Wind Coffeehouse.”

According to a study conducted by Harvard University, the average American college student has consumed at least 2 cups of coffee before 9 a.m. The time was 9:32 a.m. and I was overdue for a fix.

I walked through the door and my boots thumped against the wood flooring. In this building were strung a wide assortment of mix-matched chairs, tables and couches. Most of the occupants were hunched over a laptop working on their first assignments from class. Others were gathered at tables talking as friends who hadn’t seen each other for some time.

Strings of white–lined Christmas lights were strung out among the rafters. The window facing the east poured in enough sunlight to illuminate the store; however, it was the Christmas lights that made one feel at home.

Three steps away from me was the counter to order. To my right was a menu which listed 10 items and an assortment of flavorings for the items. The items included: An espresso, cappuccino, Americana brew, latte, or a drip coffee. One could also get tea, a chai latte, hot cocoa or an Italian soda.

Among the flavorings included coconut, caramel, vanilla and chocolate.

Each of these items came in regular, medium-sized cups which were all served in to-go cups.

The prices of the items listed ranged from $2 to $3. For a college student trying to make it by, this was a bargain deal.

This being said, the price of the coffee is only as good as the brew itself.

I ordered an Americana coffee and added a dash of creamer. As I was paying for my brew, I noticed a large mason jar with tips stuffed near to the top of the rim.

When I drank my coffee, you could tell it was freshly brewed. No stale coffee nor cold concoctions would be made at the Second Wind Coffeehouse today.

The baristas working the shop were college students serving other students. Dressed in regular clothing, two OU students worked each machine with precision and a smile. Even as the door next to them blew open with rushing cold air, they still greeted everyone indoors.

One of the baristas hugged the other when the rush of people stopped for a moment.

“This is one of the best damn jobs I’ve ever had,” the barista named Jessica said. “This way, I’ll have time for school and get paid; it doesn’t get better than this.”

I found a wicker chair on the left side of the building. Nestled between a couple working on a project and a man drumming to a song blaring in his headphones, this felt like a hub for those to seek shelter.

It welcomed everyone and everyone welcomed Second Wind Coffeehouse.

The east window looked out onto one of the side streets of Campus Corner. This street, heading south, would lead you straight to the University of Oklahoma with almost complete coverage from the elements.

What I would say is that this coffeehouse is more designed for the college student.

On the right side of the building sat a rack of board games a group of people could use to play together. Games like Blokkus, Life, Uno and Monopoly were set there for when the rush of the first week had died.

While I was working on homework, the baristas went around to almost each table and asked how everything was. The benefit of it all was the fact that it never sounded fake when they asked.

You knew they cared.

Cody Lindloff, a sophomore economics major, sat beside me on the couch with his girlfriend. He sighed with a smile each time he took a sip from his coffee. Lindloff has been going to the Second Wind Coffeehouse for over two years.

“I found this place late one night when got back from a study session on campus,” Lindloff said. “It was like a beacon before you hit the parking lot that wanted you to come in for a cup. It doesn’t hurt that the coffee is damn good.”

When I left, the two baristas wished me luck with the weather and hoped I would come back.

Don’t worry, I’ll always be back for a good cup of coffee.

Second Wind Coffee House
564 Buchanan Ave.
Norman, OK 73069

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About the Author

Brandon King

Brandon King is a journalism student at OCCC, working towards becoming a professional writer....

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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