Friday, January 14, 2011

Coffee: Its Own Food Group?

Who's awake?! Me! Pick me! I don't really want to be, but I am so I've decided to enrich your lives by blogging.
I know exactly why I'm awake-it's exam day and my brain is going a million miles a minute trying to recall random Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology, draping and anything else I can possibly remember about massage therapy. I could sit here and tell you exactly what is happening with my body, right down to the chemical reactions of cortosol and adrenalin, but I won't bore you with the details. I thought, instead of bombarding you with anatomical structures and blood composition, I would go over a few other things. So bare with me, this post probably won't be the only one I write today.

For our first post of January 14 2011, let us discuss coffee. There is so much to be said for a good cup of coffee, but I wouldn't have always said that. I used to think the stuff was gross: it was bitter and, well, just plain disgusting. My great grandma, on my dad's side, was Finn. I'm not talking a few generations removed, can trace it back to somewhere Finnish. No, I'm talking straight off the boat, came to Canada when my grandpa was thirteen. So, that automatically means the woman could cook, bake and make coffee strong enough to peel paint.
When I was a little girl-she passed away when I was twelve at the age of 83 due to a heart attack-we would go and visit her. I always liked going there. Her house had a certain smell and she had this huge, fluffy cat named Leroy who didn't like anyone but me and my great grandma, of course. Sometimes we had lunch, sometimes we just had snacks or just finnish coffee bread. Whatever the food choice was, you could always be certain that there was coffee brewing. That is how I learned to love the smell of coffee. Those afternoons perched on a chair at her kitchen table, with finnish coffee bread crumbs on my lap and the smell of coffee permeating my nostrils.
She always insisted that I have coffee too. Being from the "old country" it was her belief that you were never too young to drink coffee. So, quite often my mom would pour me a cup, fill it half full with creamer and sugar and let me have some. I liked coffee then, but I am not sure it was the taste or the fact that it was a special treat that I got to have with my mom and great grandma.
Fast forward a few years. I went through high school completely despising coffee.. I liked hot chocolate and apple cider and such things, but offer me coffee and I would laugh at you. I was competing pretty hard back then and I think the part of the reason I refused to drink coffee was because I was hyper vigilant about what I put in my body. I also think another reason was because I hated being shuffled along with everyone else. I liked dancing to my own music and I think, deep down, I thought drinking coffee was a bit too corporate for me. I would never have been able to articulate that way back then, but I am pretty sure that is what was going on.
My first couple of years of university I still did not drink coffee. I would have dates where we went for "coffee" and I was always ordering steamers, tea and fruit smoothies.
In September of 2005, Tenie and I moved in with one of her classmates Carmen. That was the year we adopted Sisu and Loki as well who are now living with my parents; a story for another time. Carmen was an avid coffee drinker. She would get up in the morning, stumble down her spiral staircase and bee line for the coffee maker. You always knew not to talk to her until the pot was half brewed and she never truly woke up until after her first mug was half finished. I still loved the smell and started letting her coax me into trying some every once in a while. Surprisingly, I started really enjoying it. It was a treat that I did not have on a daily basis and I usually limited myself to one mug of a specific size. I was still swimming and didn't want to become dehydrated from the coffee. It also became my drug of choice in the last few years of university when I was trying to stay awake at night to complete one essay or another. I even bought myself my first mug; a tall Tinker Bell mug with a large handle that I still have and love.
After I moved on from university and into massage therapy college, coffee became a comfort. Most of my friends had moved away for Grad school and I was trying to establish a new routine for myself. It sounds strange put that way, but brewing coffee in the morning and bringing it to class in my travel mug became an integral part of my mornings. Some days I knew I wouldn't even drink the stuff, but made it and brought it anyway. It was the smell I think.
It was here that I developed a taste for Starbucks fancier coffees and really enjoyed a good, fresh cup of coffee from Tim Horton's. I quickly realised that buying coffee every day was incredibly pricey and was not an expense I could afford. So, that travel mug and I became best friends.
After massage therapy college, I have hung on to my coffee drinking habit. Since I've been unemployed-awaiting the "ok" to write my licensing exam-coffee has been a constant in my life. I get up and feed the dogs-all four-put them out, have breakfast and set the coffee pot into motion. . I've even found ways to "spice" my coffee up. Anything from putting cinnamon in the grounds to be brewed into the pot, to buying flavoured creamers. I've also developed the nasty experience of having headaches if I miss a cup in the mornings-a sign you are a true addict. Even now as I write this, there is a fresh cup sitting at my side in my Mini Mouse mug, fancied up with some chocolate mint creamer. It's not something I drink all day. In fact, if I drink coffee past 2 or 3 PM I won't be able to get to sleep.
With all of this in mind, I propose that we petition the FDA to make coffee its own food group. I mean, really, how can it not be? :)


Brooke, Phoenix, Cessna, Aspen & Canyon said...

I was also not a lover of coffee at first, I liked my lattes and capaccinos in university but couldn't find a taste for coffee itself. One day Huib decided to make me a cup and said he didn't understand why I liked espresso, but not coffee, that began my love affair with the stuff lol! Huib makes his coffee really strong, being a dutch boy, but I honestly can't handle the weak stuff lol! Brandi got me a Tassimo brewer for Christmas this year and I love it!! It always makes a perfect cup of coffee and she got me the Starbucks pods to go with it so w'ere all set! Cessna has even gotten into the (probably not so good) habit of licking my frothy milk when I make the chai tea lattes, maybe we'll need to find a recipe to make her some chai tea latte treats? Good luck on your exam today Jess!

Jess and Glacier said...

I have also experienced those machines and they are fantastic! I think one day I will invest in one. At least Cessna is only drinking the milk-Aria got into my coffee mug once already and it was wound up for the entire day. I was a little concerned about her, but she just raced around and I think she burned it off.
Thanks-I passed and am very glad it is done. :)