I love coffee. I love the smell of it, the taste of it, and the sweet, sweet jolt it administers unto my soul. As soon as I’m finished offloading cloudy pee in the morning, I head straight for the coffee pot. And there are few things more satisfying as finding some already brewed java there. It’s a rare occurrence, but it does sometimes happen.
Usually I’m the only person home, and have to make a pot myself. Which is not a problem… the problem is the waiting. Man, I hate the waiting. It feels like it takes a half-hour for it to finish brewing, and that’s a torturous limbo state, my friends.
Today I’m going to share some of my thoughts and observations about coffee, and hope you guys will add your own in the comments. So, let’s get down to business!
The morning ritual is sacred
There can be no exceptions: a goodly amount of coffee MUST be ingested shortly after waking.
Back when I would occasionally find myself in a hotel, they always had those tiny coffee makers in the rooms, with a single sack of normal-people coffee, and a bag of decaf for the weirdos. And I didn’t care for it.
For one thing, I’m convinced people piss in those carafes (is that paranoid?), and they’re never washed. And it’s also not nearly enough. Oh, it’s better than nothing, but once I’ve laid waste to the pitiful yield, I’m headed straight for the stainless steel lobby silo. So, it requires relocation and logistics, which is bullshit.
Also, I’ve stayed at peoples’ houses that don’t drink coffee, and have to prepare everyone the night before: “No offense, but as soon as I get up I’m heading straight to a convenience store or a Starbucks… so know that now, no-coffee freaks.”
It’s all unnecessarily exhausting.
But once the ritual is over, it’s over
At some point I instinctually know I’m properly caffeinated, and stop. When I was young and inexperienced, I would sometimes have one cup too many, and reach the point of diminishing returns. But I’m a pro now, and that rarely happens.
And once I’m finished with coffee for the day, I never return to it. It goes like this: hot beverages, cold beverages, alcoholic beverages (sometimes). Always in that order. After I’ve moved from one phase o’ the day, there can be no phase-jumping. I never drink coffee, have a glass of ice water, and go BACK to coffee. That’s beverage anarchy, and I can’t have it.
People who drink nothing but coffee
I’ve worked with people who chug giant tankards of the stuff continuously. They’re usually skinny, and also smoke cigarettes like the Red Chinese are in Allentown.
I once knew a guy named Fred who would arrive at work freaking wired, and continue drinking high-octane coffee throughout the night. And, he swore this was true… when he got home at 1:35 a.m. he’d brew another full pot and drink it before bed.
That’s some crazy-ass shit, right there. There must be some major receptors burned out in his central nervous system, or something. Good god. The dude probably urinates something that looks like dry Sanka crystals.
And he’s not the only one. I’ve known plenty of people who rarely go five minutes without taking another slug o’ coffee. There was a guy named Joe in California who probably could’ve benefited from an intervention. The man clearly had a problem. I always wondered if he had a Mr. Coffee on his nightstand at home.
The most baffling of these kinds of folks: the ones who mainline java throughout the day, yet are still lazy slow-moving sacks of shit. How is that possible?
The trendiness of it all
When I was a kid it seemed like only old people drank coffee. It was not a cool thing to do, and there were no hipster businesses where you could exchange a five dollar bill for a cup o’ joe/fashion accessory.
Convenience stores had a single carafe of acidic motor oil coffee going at all times, and the only people who ever bought it were truckers and guys working three jobs to keep up with their child support payments.
The first time I visited a “cool” coffee shop was in Atlanta. It was a place called Aurora, in the Virginia Highland section of town. There were no Starbucks there, and I probably had never even heard of them.
But Toney and I liked Aurora, and I actually asked her to marry me, while sitting on a bench outside the place. I’m not the type to build big dramatic scenarios, with skywriting ‘n’ shit. So I just decided to ask her at a place we both liked. I could’ve gone with a favorite bar or restaurant, but liked the idea of doing it in the morning. So, Aurora got the nod.
Of course nowadays there are coffee shops on every corner, and I enjoy ’em. But I do most of my coffee uploading at home.
For years we were partial to Eight O’Clock, which we’d grind in the store and that whole song and dance. It’s good stuff, and I have nothing bad to say about it. Except… it became popular and they promptly raised the price.
We also sometimes buy Dunkin’ Donuts coffee at Sam’s Club, and that’s good — but also pricey.
Mostly we just go with the Wegmans store brand, which is amazingly good and not super-expensive. Wegmans is the gift that keeps on giving.
I’m not a fan of novelty. When I go to Starbucks I always just say, “Large coffee, please. With room for cream,” and the guy generally gives me a nod of appreciation.
What’s wrong with just coffee? There’s no need to run it through a hissing trombone, or infuse it with foamy milk, or boolshit like that. And if there’s a dome lid involved, it’s not coffee that you like… it’s something else entirely.
I also don’t go for hazelnut, and that sort of thing. And those flavored creamers? They flat-out ruin everything the come in contact with. They’re basically a vat of chemicals and sugar, with a shot of artificial flavoring. Call me a radical, but it’s not my thing.
I drink coffee, with a splash of milk to take the edge off. Anything beyond that is showboating, in my opinion.
So, there you go. Please share your thoughts on this important subject, and I’ll see you again next time.
Have a great day!