Friday, October 15, 2010

My New Best Friend

Meet my new friend…
I’ve been acquainted with coffee since childhood.   I used to sip my dad’s demitasse cup of black coffee after dinner when we ate over my grandparents’ house.   I liked it, but only a sip at a time.  The tiny cup… the tiny spoon…  the mountains of sugar my dad added to it.  In my eyes, it was coffee made for a kid.  Plus, it really pleased my relatives to see me drinking espresso; they thought I had really Italian sensibilities.  But I could never get into brown coffee.  It was just so bitter.  It always came in such a large cup, too – who could drink that much?  So instead, for a long time, I copied mom.  She liked tea.  But then she started doing weird things with her tea as she got older, like dipping the teabag for only about 10 seconds before taking it out.  The lighter the tea, the better.  It was like drinking hot, colored water.

But that’s another story altogether.  Coffee is not colored water. 
When I was student teaching, I also had to take a statistics class on Saturday mornings. Class started at 9:00 a.m.  I went to the first class (three consecutive hours of math – just shoot me) and I struggled to stay awake.  I remember when I was driving there the next Saturday, I had an epiphany…  I got a Starbucks Café Mocha, hoping it would keep me awake, and eureka, in those moments I had discovered the wonder of caffeine.  I stayed awake for the whole class.  Awake, alert, and ready to learn, baby!
Still, I converted to daily coffee drinking in small steps.  At home, we signed up for Gevalia, mostly for the free coffee pot.  What a pleasant surprise!  If you haven’t tried Gevalia, you should.  I think it’s the best coffee around, overall.  Then again, I’m not a professional coffee drinker, so what do I know, really?  I just know that Gevalia is great, and my aunt’s coffee, for example, tastes like Draino, even if you try to disguise it with lots of sugar and a quarter cup of milk.  Anyway, eventually, we moved on from Gevalia (which is pretty expensive, and it’s hard to make a pot of coffee when you really want just one cup) to a Keurig coffee maker with my new favorite coffee:  Green Mountain Columbian Fair Trade Select.  I love it.  A just opened box of k-cups from Costco is a beautiful sight. 
I’ve noticed that coffee is more than just the taste, it’s the whole experience… it’s the sound of the pot in the morning (whatever sound your pot makes), the smell, the warmth of the cup in your hand.  Holding the cup as you walk around at work (if you’ve gifted yourself with a travel mug, like I have) is like wearing your comfy bedroom slippers at work.  I ask you, who cannot use another few minutes of comfy slippers in the morning?

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