Archive for October, 2009

Coffee Project: Day Seventy-Two

Saturday, October 31st, 2009

(Sorry if this is getting tedious, but I continue to observe and experiment with coffee, and continue to assure myself that this is all good science and not just well-rationalized backsliding.  You judge.)

This week I’ve had three more cups of coffee.  That’s one cup every two or three days, which feels moderate.  But this takes discipline, because I crave a lot more than that, and my neighborhood is a minefield of coffeeshops.  Abstinence was easier.

Today, during lunch with my daughter, I had a 12oz latte.  It was delicious.  It kicked my linguistic lobes into overdrive; I talked my mom’s ear off, talked my wife’s ear off, spent a productive afternoon clearing my inbox and replying to correspondence, plotted several upcoming pieces of writing, read Cometbus, read Facebook … soon it was eleven PM. Read the rest of this entry »

Coffee Project: Day Sixty-Four

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

I had a cup of coffee on my birthday.  It was a latte from Stumptown on SW 3rd, downtown, and it was wonderful.  It’s hard to separate the coffee-feeling from the immense hangover and sleep deprivation I had from the night before, or with the euphoria and validation from all 300 of my Facebook friends wishing me happy birthday.  But I felt wide-eyed, imaginative, gregarious, festive and happy.  All afternoon I visited bookstores and bought tiny presents for myself with my gift money.  Happy birthday to me!  I stayed up a bit late but had no real trouble sleeping, and the next morning I did not feel any ill effects of withdrawal.

Two days later I had another cup of coffee — a latte from the Fresh Pot on Mississippi — and it totally sucked!  That was with plenty of rest, no hangover, and a strong need to get some writing done.  It’s hard to separate the coffee-feeling from my deeply ingrained procrastination problems, but it didn’t inspire me or improve my concentration.   I just felt twitchy, dehydrated and scatterbrained.  Walking down a sunny street I felt a layer of excess perception seperating me from the sights and smells around me.  And even though that coffee tasted just like I remember wanting coffee to taste, it still tasted terrible.  My favorite coffee from my favorite cafe.  WTF? Read the rest of this entry »

Coffee Project: Day Fifty-Eight

Saturday, October 17th, 2009

I feel fine now.  My mind is in a good place.  I’m getting things done, I’m working, I’m even writing a little.  Life without stimulants isn’t so bad.

But Monday will be the sixty day mark of this experiment, and also my forty-first birthday.  I’d like to celebrate with a really good cup of coffee.

Abstinence is easier than moderation for me.  But moderation is what I want.  It would be great to enjoy a cup of coffee over lunch with a friend, every now and then, and not feel crippled without it.  To use it for what it’s good for, and then leave it alone. Read the rest of this entry »

Coq Au Smoke

Sunday, October 4th, 2009

image: Pablo Picasso

There once was a chicken, silver and gray.  It was broody and uncooperative at our friends’ farm.  We got it for free; we thought a change of scenery might help it.  But in sixteen months it never laid one egg.  Worse, it became tangled up in an underground egg-eating ring — a ring that we recently busted.

I am a licensed poultry farmer in Multnomah County, but I am not the operator of a sanctuary for troubled chickens.  I cut that chicken’s head off last Tuesday, plucked and eviscerated it, and began fantasizing of fine cuisine.  So it goes. Read the rest of this entry »