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The man was shaking. He seemed unhappy. No, he seemed miserable. I took one look at him and knew things were not going to go well for me at that meeting. My business partner had set up the encounter. I merely had to come up with the venue. So I did a bit of googling and found That Spot on 4th in Parktown North. It ticked all the boxes. It was just the right distance for all four of us. The pictures looked great — the place was small, intimate, not too trendy, tastefully decorated. The reviews were generous. The menu sounded interesting. What could possibly go wrong? Well, everything. I was the third person to arrive. The wind was whistling and Joburg temperatures had plummeted below 10°C. I sat down and our guest asked me pointedly: "Wouldn’t you agree that coffee is a basic human right?" I am a Ceylon tea man myself, but given the obsessive nature of coffee drinkers I knew the UN had erred in failing to pronounce on this matter in its universal declaration. It turns out the coffee ...

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