Saturday, September 22, 2007

the first step is admitting you have a problem

Two nights ago I went to prepare my morning coffee and I realized we had a crisis on our hands. I was out of coffee filters! How had I let this happen?! How could I have been so darn irresponsible to let myself stoop to this new low? What was I going to do? Last year I had bought a pack of coffee filters at Costco that I was sure would last me until at least 2010. I was sure there were at least 1500 filters in the pack. I was delusional, apparently, because the pack only contained 400 filters. But I still searched the entire kitchen 3 times to see if I had just 1 left somewhere. I didn't.

Instead of crying about it, I googled "coffee filter substitutes" and there were a few sites that said you could use a paper towel instead. But that was too much work and being my luck, I know the paper towel would have been too thick and would have caused an overflowing mess in my kitchen. So then I would have been without my coffee and with a huge mess to clean up. That's just not a good way to start the day. I searched the kitchen one last time and then compromised and decided I would drink a Coke in the morning instead so I wouldn't get that insane caffeine headache at 3 in the afternoon.

The next morning I woke up and did my habitual practice of walking to the coffee maker to press the button. And then I remembered; there was no coffee to be made this morning. It made me sad and the compromise of drinking Coke just wasn't sounding good. Then I remembered that my much loved Cuisinart Brew Central that I bought a couple of years ago might have come with a few sample coffee filters. I haven't used this coffee maker since we left Washington over a year ago because it won't fit into the outlets here without blowing the house up so it's been in it's box in the attic. I climbed up to the attic and opened the box and there, like a light from heaven, was a single coffee filter. Hallelujah!

In the literal hour I was searching for a stupid filter, I didn't realize how desperate and obsessive I was. But as I was drinking my delicious coffee, I realized that I had a problem. Hi. My name is JoAnna and I have an addiction.

(here come the justifications and excuses)

It's not the caffeine that I love, although that's a nice perk. When I make the coffee, I make 6 cups and drink 4 or 5 of them. I make it with 5 scoops of decaf and 2 scoops of regular coffee. So it really isn't the caffeine rush that I get which makes me so addicted but it's the routine of the coffee that I need. There's something really comforting about starting your day with a warm cup of hazelnut flavored creamer with a bit of coffee. I don't drink it after noon. I just drink it in the morning so it's not like I need an IV drip of it daily so it's not that bad. But the fact that it can make or break my day is what makes this a problem.

It can't be that bad of an addiction, though. There are some out there that are much worse. There are at least health benefits associated with mine, as coffee is filled with antioxidants and does great things for your body and mind. There's even an entire website devoted to the benefits of coffee. Granted, it's sponsored by the National Coffee Association and the people who run all of these studies are probably addicted to coffee too and are just looking for some justification for drinking so much...

But if my 4-5 cups of decaf a day helps cut my risk for liver cancer and Parkinson's, then I'm going to keep drinking up. Heck, if I drink enough coffee and red wine and eat enough canned tomatoes, then maybe, just maybe I can undo some of the damage I've done from drinking out of hard plastic bottles, living under high voltage power lines, eating so much high fructose corn syrup, standing in front of the microwave, living on or near farms that use pesticides, talking on a cell phone for more than a hour at a time, drinking too much soda, eating non organic produce and meat, being in the sun without sun block, driving a diesel engine car, having too many x-rays done, swallowing fluoride tooth paste as a kid, eating paste as a kid, painting tons of rooms, cleaning with harsh chemicals, etc... I better get a ton of coffee filters.


Bitter Coffee said...

LOL I hope you got your filters Jo. ;) I have the same coffee addiction as you, only I use full caf, and either Creme Brulee or Coconut Creme creamer. The mid-day headache is a horror. Either's good, we like it whether it's good for us or not. At least we aren't huffing gas. ;)

Anonymous said...

Oh, I SOOOO understand...the ritual/routine thing. You're OK, I'm OK. But be careful. I was totally decaffed almost since you were W's age and now I'm on half and half. This could get really serious!
Love and hugs.

Anonymous said...

Coffee is ok - but I really approve of and prefer the red wine -- after 5pm of course. We continue to send healthy thoughts and prayers for CB. I can't wait to meet her in person.

Andrea said...

You climbed into the attic? Now that is dedication! I won't even buy myself a coffee maker because I'm sure I could get to that point. I settle for the new tea bag style single serve stuff. Maybe you should get some of those for backup... PS don't you just love "antioxidants" - dark chocolate is loaded with them too. Thats my drug of choice these days ; )

Imcombobulated said...

I am that dedicated to my coffee too. And being knocked up now and prone to sleep disturbance even when empty-wombed, I do the mostly decaf with a hint of caffeine that you do.
Bravo on the attic inspiration.

Anonymous said...

JoAnna, you crack me up. I can't believe you went through boxes in the attic! Oh, and for future reference... the paper towel trick does work! It'll give your coffee a little bit of a weird taste- but it works in a pinch. And slightly weird tasting coffee is much better than no coffee at all!

Jessica Ryan said...

I too have a drinking problem Jo! If I can not get my morning coffee well, you may just stay the heck away! 1. get a gold filter -- they are washable and reusable should you ever find yourself in this situation... 2) when you get paper filters, if you get the white ones they make a GREAT canvass for water color!