As a former barista, I give you props for actually knowing the correct way to order your drink! You're supposed to read the modifications as they appear going down the side of the cup.
I also COMPLETELY agree with the article. There is NOTHING wrong with ordering your drink the way you like it. While it sounds complicated & stupid when you order, in most cases it is just as easy to make (unless you're one of those Quad Venti 1/4 Decalf Breve Extra Hot No Foam Latte bastards...and yes, I have made that drink before). Speaking from experience, people are MORE passionate when their drink isn't perfect, so I hardly think it's a blight on Starbucks and corporatism.
Now you're really making me want my Iced Grande 1 Pump Vanilla Extra-Light Cream Iced Coffee :D
I'm a nice and simple Grande No Water Chai. woohoo.