Hong Kong’s unflappable ‘Starbucks Uncle’ goes viral, is the hero we all need

Yesterday, as the streets and roads of Hong Kong were flooded during a Black Rainstorm, an unexpected hero emerged from the fracas and gave us all hope. The name of this great champion?

Er, Starbucks Uncle.

You see, as people were trapped on buses or simply abandoning their vans in the sometimes waist-deep water, one resilient man led by example, calmly continuing to read his paper at a Chai Wan Starbucks, wet ankles be damned.

Photo: Kristy Chan via TV Most

A few different photos of this unidentified icon made their way onto social media, but one taken by netizen Kristy Chan blew up when it was shared by TV Most on Facebook.

Soon, Hongkongers began imagining (read: photoshopping) Starbucks Uncle in various dire situations, like on the sidelines of an explosion.

Photo: TV Most via Facebook

However, our favourite is the one of him in a gnarly wave. Our reasoning: 1. it reminds us of another great masterpiece, Hokusai’s Great Wave Off Kanagawa, and 2. Starbucks Uncle has already proven that he has no fear in the face of water, so it only makes sense.

Photo: TV Most via Facebook

Later, when it emerged that Starbucks Uncle had a companion, one man took it upon himself to imagine the pair in a more relaxing environment.

Photo: Tony Man via Facebook

But the crowning moment came today, when we found out that Starbucks Uncle had made the front page of Reddit. (Or at least, it had before press time. The internet’s a fickle place, just ask Ken Bone.)

Thank you, Starbucks Uncle, for enriching our lives. Truly, you are our Taiwanese pork bun lady.


Got a tip? Send it to us at hongkong@coconuts.co


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