By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
After the scheduled talk was done, Cogill stayed on, chatting with a dozen or so people who came up to him one at a time. He didn't have to be at Channel 8 until the 10 p.m. news anyway.
"You think it would be possible, Gary," asked one his Thursday regulars, "to watch the Oscars together?"
"I don't know, because I'm gonna be there," said Cogill, who is scheduled to attend the big Hollywood happening for the first time in his career. "You guys are going to have to get together and figure that out on your own."
But Cogill's absence didn't seem to be a deterrent. The man left still trying to determine whether there was a classier location than a CiCi's Pizza that could provide the space and the large-screen television for himself and his friends.
And on the following Saturday night, without Cogill chaperoning, some of the crowd also managed to go together to see a movie. Chris Richard, a software programmer at Center Financial Services Inc. and a Thursday-night regular, met up with Mahan and Friedel to see Dr. Death, an eerie documentary that Cogill had highly recommended about a man who manufacturers execution equipment. At the movie house, they ran into another group of new friends from the Starbucks crowd. "This thing just happened," said Friedel about the chance meeting, "but it was good."