Monday, April 11, 2005

The Vice that Binds

I was watching Donnie Darko with my kids a few nights ago and one of the characters extolled the virtues of what is considered to be the most beautiful word combination known to man: cellar door. To hell with that - how about Soy Latte? What about Venti Espresso?

I remember my first cup of coffee: I was sixteen and my best friend was fourteen. She's Jewish, but as Annie Lamott so aptly puts it, not into Moses Jewish, but bagelly Jewish...she might as well be Canadian... but she was raised on caffeine by parents who didn't buy into the bullshit of caffeine being a drug and all that. My friend and I were band geeks on a trip to St. Louis. We were free to do as we pleased, thanks in part to chaperones who were too busy fucking each other to pay any attention to us. We had snuck out the night before and found ourselves flat on our backs under the arch. No, we weren't star gazing...we were busy getting felt-up by some horny band geek boys. I only recall that (1) they weren't any good at it (2) how glorious it was to be making out in St. Louis (3) How absolutely glorious it was to have my best friend beside me, laughing at how inept these boys were at tweaking the titty. Never mind that we didn't have anything to compare their skills to - a girl just knows, and we knew they were doing it all the hell wrong.

My first cup of coffee was thrust upon me by my friend the next morning. "You look hung-over. You're gonna get us busted, bitch."(note: Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie totally stole our act.) My protest of "But I don't LIKE coffee" was met with the evil bagely-jew eye and a styrofoam cup. My first cup of coffee was probably closer to my first cup of sugar-laden cream than it was coffee. "Just put more stuff in it. Eventually you won't taste the coffee...and put on some concealer... Jesus Christ on a Popsicle Stick, don't you EVER wear make-up?"

I became violently ill later on in the afternoon. My precious digestive system was not accustomed to so much caffeine, let alone so much sugar. But I remember the joy of sharing my first grope and my first coffee with my first best friend, and I've never turned back from either.

I've been through my various coffee phases: cream, flavored, straight up, and back to cream again. It's not just the flavor I'm after anymore; the aroma is intoxicating, the temperature is soothing, the marbling affect of cream settling along the surface is mesmerizing...

But let's face it - no matter how much I glorify it, I'm addicted to caffeine. If you try to take it from me, I will do my best impression of a bagelly jew, and then I will fight you to the death.