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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My Love/Hate Relationship

All latte art courtesy of Tristin Roberts and his family's company, Jitter Bean
Oh coffee... you saucy minx you!  I adore your bittersweet taste, the way you mingle so deliciously with cream and sugar, and how bold you can be on your own.  Alas, you do not love me as I love you.

My love affair with coffee started at a young age; my folks usually drink about 2-3 cups of coffee a day.  When I was little, I would ask for frequent "sips."  I LOVED the taste because they put a bit of cream and sugar in their coffee (my mom more than my dad) and it seemed like a fun, grownup thing.  At my grandparents' house, coffee was something to be had after every meal, pretty much.  They were good Swedes, what can I say?

I first encountered Starbucks at age 14; my folks didn't get their coffee at coffeeshops, they brewed it at home, so Starbucks felt SUPER fancy to me.  My first 'fancy' drink was White Mocha and I remember that first sip as pure bliss.  My best friend, Alaina, and I would rollerblade to Starbucks regularly for Frappuccinos (although, if I remember correctly, she'd get Tazoberry, which is no longer offered... does anyone remember those??  SUPER tasty, I think they were discontinued in 2005ish?).  In 2001, right after I turned 17, I started working at Starbucks while in my junior year of high school.  I gained at least 5 pounds (maybe closer to ten??) after eating tons of pastries, Frappuccinos, and White Mochas.  Daaaaangerous, I tell you!!

Flower
In 2002 I left Starbucks for Caribou Coffee, since they offered me a shift supervisor position (and my coworkers were creepy pervs... DEFINITELY could have had them fired under the sexual harassment policies, but I was a fairly shy almost 18 year old who didn't want to cause trouble... weird, right???).  I didn't like Caribou's coffee as much as Starbucks, but I still drank it.  PLUS, Caribou offered "Wild Drinks" which were super sweet and topped with things like crushed Oreos, Snickers, and Andes Mints.  Annnnnd we add on another 5 pounds....

In college I roomed with a Miss Kathy O'Dowd, who also worked at Starbucks and who was also a coffee junkie.  We regularly drank coffee in our cramped dorm rooms, we drank coffee in the university cafeteria, we drank coffee at the university coffeeshop...  Coffee, coffee, coffee.

In the early Spring of 2006, I decided to give up coffee for Lent.  I'd never participated in Lent before as it seemed to be a largely Catholic practice to me, but I thought I'd give it a go.  I was suppppper graceful about it, realllllly.... except that it seemed that denying myself coffee opened me up to sleepiness, headaches, and bouts of bitchiness.  Not so pleasant.  I made it the whole 40 days, however, and kicked the habit.  It really WAS a habit for me, one that became more and more apparent the less and less I drank the stuff.

Rosetta
That summer I moved to Wyoming and roomed with three Mormon girls who did NOT drink coffee because of religious reasons.  I drank it occasionally at work, but we only had either 1. nasty stuff or 2. instant stuff (I know, repetitive, eh??).  When I went back to Chicago, I started drinking a little bit more coffee, but it was pretty rare.  My last semester in university was spent at home on internship, and I was once more surrounded by coffee.  My finance, Bryan, didn't drink coffee, even though he worked at Starbucks (MAN do I know a lot of Starbucks people...) and so I didn't drink much either.

When we moved to California I decided that I'd only drink coffee when Bryan brought it to me from Starbucks, and I generally preferred chais at the time, so I drank very little then as well.  In the last year I've decided to make coffee a tiny part of my life.  Seemed innocent enough... as long as I didn't get addicted, I'd be good, right??

WRONG!!! Apparently my body doesn't LIKE coffee anymore, because when I drink more than a few sips, I get a nasty stomach ache, nausea, and occasionally an ache in my back.  Crazy, right??  I thought maybe this was caused by drinking coffee that was too dark, so I started to add more cream and sugar to my coffee.  That seemed to work a little bit, but now even THAT isn't working!  I read online that this can be a sensitivity to the oils and the acidity in the coffee, and not so much the caffeine.  The website recommended cream in your coffee, as well as eating something with your coffee.  This works occasionally, but more often than not, I drink my 1.5 cups of coffee in my cute little "J" mug and then the tummy starts getting angry within a half hour.  It's the saddest thing.

Taj Mahal
During those two years I didn't drink coffee, I drank a lot of black or green tea.  I know I can go back to that, but it certainly doesn't have the same KICK as coffee does, and it doesn't do as good of a job waking me up at my 7am work days.  But I have a feeling I may have to stop the coffee entirely.

Like I said, it's the saddest thing.

Does anyone else have this problem with coffee??  It's not like I get the jitters or anything, just the tummy ache and the occasional urge to throw up.  It's seriously gross.  And... sad.

(Pssssst.... If you're in HumCo or plan on visiting Nor Cal anytime soon, Jitter Bean is the tastiest!!!)

5 comments:

  1. I used to feel like that if I drank it first thing before eating everything...and then I started working at Pizza Hut (lots of opening shifts) and started the tummy aches stopped? I have no idea if it was because I accepted it or if it was because I was pregnant (i didnt know it at the time) but ever since I haven't had any real problems with coffee...??? weird huh

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  2. I love it and sometimes drink it, but I end up with really bad stomach pains from it. Tea doesn't do it to me, so I don't think it's the caffeine, I think it's the coffee. Even the sugary yummy stuff still does it.

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  3. Jean - Ahhh so pregnancy is the cure, eh?? Hahaha not sure if I'm ready for that treatment yet. :-)

    Brittany - Hi!!! I think it's the same with me; not necessarily the caffeine (b/c I drink lots of black tea and don't have problems), but maybe the acidity and oils??

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  4. Ya, that is probably it. It is worse if I drink it without food, but I get it no matter what. So it makes sense that it would be the acidity and oils.

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  5. Dude. I drink 3-4 cups a day, usually within 20 minutes of each other.

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