Ch-ch-ch-changesLast week, after two months without caffeine, I broke down and had a large, black coffee at Starbucks. They call a large a Venti, I think. As you might guess, my sophistication, or lack thereof, concerning coffee is rather obvious. All previous intake has been via my ten dollar coffee maker or gas station brew. Once in a blue moon I drank the good stuff. An expert barista, I am most definitely not.Why the return to artificial stimulation? Well, I believe (insert laughter here) that I can drink coffee in moderation, that is to say not right before bed. (For the last thirty years it was not uncommon for me to slam down a 44 oz of diet coke on the drive home from work and then hit the sack. And I did sleep. You bet. Weird, huh?) I am currently studying for a promotional exam while simultaneously finishing the first draft of my work-in-progress, a science fiction / steam punk masterpiece that I love dearly (Her Majesty the Queen).On go-juice induced berserker rage ended with 7,400 extremely raw words splashed across my narrative arc.
That first cup of coffee after so many weeks was markedly different than the previous lifetime of caffeine saturated experience. In the past, I just didn’t feel it. Consumed in moderation, or at least on a reasonable schedule, coffee is my new best friend. I will not be going back to diet soda, mostly for fear of the mysterious chemical cocktail that had me so addicted to the stuff–you know, making midnight runs for a two liter and drinking diet soda with every single bite of every single meal.Then I Realized I Had a ProblemThe coffee I made at home tasted bad and the stuff at my favorite gas station convenience store was not good. With nothing left to do but throw myself on the ground and curse fate, I turned to the internet to learn how to make good coffee. I started with Starbucks here. Taste TestAlong comes Monday morning. I don’t work until later. The wife just went to work and the kids are at school. It is time for some experimentation and a taste test. Since I am not a professional, or even skilled barista, please refer to the Starbucks link above for an explanation of how I made the two kinds of coffee by coffee maker and by coffee press.
ResultsDoes a coffee press really make significantly better coffee? Survey says, oh hell yes! The red cup, which you will see in the author profile picture guarding access to this top secret information at the top of the page contains freshly ground Starbucks coffee made in a press. I am fairly impressed with myself right now. And just to be clear, the red cup / blue cup comparison is merely because I like these two cups; it has nothing to do with the red pill / blue pill dilemma in the Matrix.
This is not only the secret to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and writing, but to life!
Writer’s ParadiseAround this time, I also started meeting with Josh Hayes (author of Second Star: Breaking Through and The Forgotten Prince) at Barnes and Noble or Mead’s Corner (a local coffee shop). We discuss writing, but mostly we set a timer and do writing sprints. This has helped my motivation immensely. I highly recommend the practice. Call me a complete writing geek, but I would rather do this than any other “social” activity.”Thanks for stopping by and reading this article. Please take a look at my author page and see if you or anyone you know might enjoy my science fiction or urban fantasy / horror novels.Have a great day!