My favorite thing to do when I step into work in the morning is prepare a delicious pot of syrupy coffee. The smell from the coffee maker (company-bought) wafts through air and fills the office, as a reminder to the TBM Mormons of what they are missing out on. I make sure to slurp loudly as I go from cubicle to cubicle chatting with other ladies. How often do TBM Mormons think they are better because of their commitment of abstinence? How often do they tell their children that coffee-drinkers like us are sinners who are destined for sickness and a face full of wrinkles before the age of 35? Well, the laugh is on them as my bright cheery face yacks away while they are sitting there trying to work. That’s what they get for judging me!
But the fact is, I am superior to them because I drink coffee. The health benefits of coffee have been well documented by scientists. It is scientifically proven to protect against Parkinson’s disease, lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, help you relax, and treat depression. I find it is like a medication for depression all on its own. And sugar-filled lattes from chain-coffee houses are even better, because sugar makes it more stimulating and delicious, and lower the risk of Diabetes. Drinking coffee also gives me more time to socialize. Coffee is like the perfect elixir of goodness. So in the evening when the media corporation I work for hands me my paycheck, the first thing I do is walk into Starbucks and order a massive frappuccino with extra whip cream and syrupy red goo. Then I go home and attack the bottle of red wine. And then another trip to Starbucks before I go to bed.
A study shows a third of church members drink coffee pretty regularly, including a quarter of temple-attendees within the last 6 months. Well, I applaud these sinners for deciding for themselves what is best for their bodies and not leaving it up to some old white male. For many, coffee has become a symbol of the forbidden fruit that carries such a negative stigma in our judgemental culture yet provides so much knowledge and wisdom. It literally makes you smarter. I find that people who drink two or three cups of syrup-filled coffee a day like me know more stuff. We can chat away about the latest celebrity news and recent episodes of TV reality shows, and the TBM sits there silently in her office chair like she has no idea what we are talking about! Then she turns back to her computer, probably because she is ashamed of not being smart like us, and sometimes I like to rub it in her face by asking pointed questions about last night’s episode of the Bachelor, and she tells me, “I really need to get back to work.” I can’t believe how stupid coffee-skeptics are! They lack so much nuance!
Next time a TBM yells at you for drinking coffee, remind them that their hot cocoa has caffeine in it too. So what’s the difference? The only difference I see is coffee literally makes you a better person and cocoa just makes you pathetic. In fact, drinking coffee can help you be a more spiritual person, because drinking coffee means you are no longer judging people who do, and being non-judgemental makes you a better person. It’s a toss-up which makes you a more righteous person–coffee or marijuana–probably marijuana because it doesn’t stain your teeth. But I find that inhaling coffee at a frantic pace is also a reminder that I can be whoever I want to be. Once I cross the fence into the world of “spiritual crocodiles,” I can discover hidden treasure like coffee and chart my own course, walk my own woke path. It empowers me as a woman.
This is why I always use coffee to identity who I am as a person. This is why I spend over $200 per month on coffee, not including money for gas. It is like my daily communion. If tomorrow the world’s infrastructure collapsed and there were no delivery trucks carrying bags of coffee beans from impoverished slave-labor countries, I would probably collapse on the floor and slip into a coma. But right now we are living in a modern technological world where I don’t need to worry about things like self-sufficiency. For now, coffee is literally who I am, and I am a happier and smarter 26-year old because of it.
Until next time, I am Ann Eliza.