Wednesday, March 21, 2007

I've used but one too many times, I think

I drink coffee now.

I vowed since the day I was eight, and grabbed my dad's travel mug off the hood of the rusting old SUV parked in our upper parking lot I wouldn't touch the stuff.

But to be fair, the coffee was way past cold, and I was only eight.

I've had tea for caffeine since then. Well I had a brief, torrid love affair with Pepsi, which ended with me swearing off soda for perceived health reasons. But tea. A good black tea, with a spritz of ReaLemon. None of that cheap, real lemon crap for me.

I prefer my flavor to come from a lemon-like substance conveniently bottled in a lemon-shaped container.

But then, oops, I lost the can of my Republic of Tea - Earl Greyer that I bought at Wegman's last year.

But hooray, my darling and wonderful girlfriend bought be a small tin of Barnes & Noble's house tea (which isn't really a house tea since its an actual brand, some English-sounding name).

But oh no, I drank all that, too.

Then she asked me last night if I would like a cup of tea. It was like she read my mind. I hadn't had tea in months. It was very good.

But coffee. I've had a cup here and there. Black. Wal-Mart coffee is probably the worst I've had, and Seattle's Best -- which The Spot brews -- the best (go figure).

I've grown accustomed to it. Much like I grew accustomed to beer sophomore year of college. Or accustomed myself to Scotch earlier this year (is it weird I still think of a year as starting in August and ending in May/June?).

Mmmm coffee. Sweet java. Plus, drink a lot and it will make you hyper.

Plus plus, there's a coffee shop around here -- which I have yet to frequent -- that grinds their own beans. Or do they roast and grind their own beans. I don't know. But it's a cool little shack at which I've always wanted to stop on my way to work, but I've never left the apartment early enough.

I guess I was first introduced to coffee during my tenure at Lakewood 84 Truck Stop. I would get a Starbucks Double Shot every morning, to wake me up at 6 a.m. when I had to play coffee wench and refill the pots every 30 seconds.

By the way, who knew truck drivers carried around kegs disguised as coffee mugs. I honestly have no clue how they fit those mugs in cupholders, unless the entrance into the trucking world included some gift basket-cum-cupholder.

Also, who knew Starbucks Double Shot was basically taking heavy cream and pouring it down my throat, letting it slosh and stew in my stomach until it eventually permeated my fat fatty fat fat. But it woke me up. And, much to my chagrin, Exxon stations do not come with espresso machines standard.

But black coffee -- no calories (well, OK, calories, but you know what I mean). No HFCS. No fat. No sugar. Just good.

Like my beloved British tea, but more accessible. (Plus, for Christmas, El Editorio bought us a rather fabulous coffee brewer and bean grinder, and a whole bag o' beans from that local shop I mentioned -- Merlin's.)

But when I'm dying after four hours of court rote, a small (I refuse, Starbucks, you can't make me say it!) black coffee hits the spot, which, probably rather unironically, is the name of the establishment I "frequent." They also have great sandwiches, which are sadly a little too pricey for my meager salary to handle. But boy are they good. Every time I have a court day, my mind wrestles with itself, Steven Seagal vs. Kurt Russel, battling it out to "forget" the turkey and cheese sandwich I made the night before, or be economic and bring the sandwich with me.

Kurt Russell always wins, although it splits evenly because they alternate stances. My mind is pretty screwed up sometimes. I bet it can't wait for the remake of Escape from New York (some idealistic writer/director/producer thinks they can do better? Well, let me tell you. The finest bookshelf made from cow manure is still a pile of cow manure). Know what I mean?

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