Derek Jeter apparently tried to pass himself off as a dude named Philip while ordering coffee at Starbucks in Greenwich Village yesterday, but is that so wrong? Chances are you don’t give your real name at Starbucks, because no one does. The practice of baristas scrawling names on customers’ cups has been around in some markets for a while and is now a more or less universal thing that only seems to have engendered a vast proliferation of fake coffee-customer names. There are fake Starbucks names Tumblrs and alter ego blogs that go to show that no one likes giving their real name at the counter (except for Jessica Alba, ever the iconoclast). So, celebrities, as the adage goes, are just like us, and the proof is straight ahead, ranked from most to least credible.
The Celebrity: Jessica Alba
Starbucks Name: “Jessica”
Extra Shot: Absolutely credible.
The Celebrity: Lawrence O’Donnell
Starbucks Name: “Jim”
Extra Shot: The MSNBC host views Starbucks as a safe haven from the general unhappiness his name normally makes him feel. “Everywhere else,” he says, “I endure life with a first name that I don’t really like because not using my first name just seems too phony to me.” Verdict: Credible and sad.
The Celebrity: Jonathan Knight
Starbucks Name: “Michael”
Extra Shot: Former N.K.O.T.B. heartthrob Knight routinely plays the Starbucks name game and could totally pass for a Michael. Fran, however, maybe not so much.
The Celebrity: Jemele Hill
Starbucks Name: “Barbara”
Extra Shot:“I give a fake name at Starbucks,” the ESPN columnist explains. “Always try to pick something that couldn’t possibly sound like it’s my name. Today I was Barbara.” Hill clearly does not think she could be a Barbara, so we’re going with that.
The Celebrity: Ben Affleck
Starbucks Name: “Spencer”
Extra Shot: Coming up with fake Starbucks names are work, you know, just like marriage is work. But it’s worth it!
The Celebrity: Rainn Wilson
Starbucks Name: “Bob”
Extra Shot: No, not at all. More like long shot. (Though we could see Wilson totally passing for “Bob” at an airport Starbucks.)
The Celebrity: Derek Jeter
Starbucks Name: “Philip”
Extra Shot: Points for attempting the rarer, one L version of Philip, but ultimately no one was fooled.
The Celebrity: Amanda Bynes
Starbucks Name: “Nadia”
Extra Shot: The perennial Drake enthusiast has a real-life assistant named Nadia, yet Bynes’s fake Starbucks name still manages to be the least credible of the bunch.