We’ve previously posted about the phenomenon of well-heeled consumers paying for the privilege of performing manual labor in food production that our country could otherwise only get illegal immigrants to do. But here’s a new twist on the continued glamorization of the food service industry — yesterday Microsoft announced a new video game for the Xbox 360 called “Barista Barista Revolution”: Microsoft Unveils Barista Barista Revolution | The Naked Loon.

In case you’ve been hiding out in a cave with Osama Bin Laden for the past decade, the name is a take on an immensely popular video game called Dance Dance Revolution (aka “DDR”). In “BBR”, players apparently take on the roles of highly skilled disco baristas as they “grind, tamp, pull, and steam their way to the perfect espresso, in rhythm to the beat of dozens of today’s top hits.”

The article then goes on to announce:

The game is expected to retail for $120, and thanks to an exclusive partnership with Starbucks, will include a wireless espresso machine game controller—an 80-pound full-scale model of the most common unit found in Starbucks around the world.

“Our driving motivation for BBR was to bring the thrill and excitement of the United States Barista Championship into the living room,” explained [the game’s lead developer, John] Parker.

We’ve always thought the specialty drink program of the U.S. Barista Championship (USBC) smacked a little too much of Tom Cruise-inspired Cocktail mixology. And the competition’s deficit of real-life barista skills and emphasis on barista gymnastics have always been a puzzle.

But a video game that sports a game controller modeled after the heinous super-automatic Verismo machine so people can play video barista to the sounds of the disco beat? The USBC had better hope this video game does not catch on, or its integrity is going into the toilet faster than you can say “Frappuccino”.

P.s.: Psyche! Continuing our need for blog comedy, Microsoft has no such plans and the The Naked Loon is, er, well… you get the idea.

DDR scene from the movie “Grandma’s Boy”