Wanted: New Drug

The book I’m reading (another Terry Pratchett book, Monstrous Regiment) has a vampire who’s joined the Temperance League and substituted a blood addiction for an addiction to coffee. Somehow that got the idea stuck in my head that I should do the same thing.

Not give up my addiction to blood, of course — I love blood. But I’ve got a costly Coke habit that has not only done a number on my teeth and my breath, but also keeps me perpetually chubby. I figure if I could just get over my aversion to coffee, I’d get all the caffeine — something my body needs anyway, and I like that — without as much of the high fructose corn syrup.

So sometime last week (details are hazy), I went and busted up a Starbuck’s in my initial test run. I’m not even going to go into the whole business about the coffee-drinkers vs. non-coffee-drinkers club, and how the feeling I got looking at the menu must be what normal people feel like when they go into a comic book store. The double whammy of you don’t belong here and you have no idea how this works. (Plus the double grande non-fat mocha latte chino bit was already tired even when LA Story came out).

I ended up with a latte because I heard someone order one one time and I know it has something to do with milk. Tasted like warm milk served in a cup that had been previously used to drink coffee and wasn’t sufficiently cleaned. Not bad, definitely not as bad as my previous attempts at coffee-drinking, but nothing spectacular. I forced myself to like beer and cigarettes, I figured, so I can force myself to like this. The only question was whether it would have any effect — it didn’t seem very strong, and my years of the Coke monkey on my back have built up a pretty significant tolerance to caffeine.

At about 5:30 the next morning, I thought it would probably be a good idea to go to bed. I wasn’t tired yet, but it was starting to get light out so it just seemed like the thing to do. As I stopped vibrating long enough to drift off, I started to wonder what an espresso would do… Maybe Coke Blak is the answer?

Update: Apparently a latte is espresso. Go figure. Well, now I know, and knowing is half the battle.

3 thoughts on “Wanted: New Drug”

  1. And here’s something else: while many people think espresso is stronger than a regular cup of joe, it’s not really the case. Sort of. Regular brewed coffee has more caffeine than a shot of a espresso–and that’s not just because you’re drinking more in one cup of coffee than in a shot of espresso. The LIGHTER the roast of the bean, the MORE caffeine it will have. Espresso is a darker roast than most other coffees, hence less caffeine…

    So, I’m just saying, I think you’d notice the caffeine effect more if you had an actual cup of coffee, and not an espresso drink.

    As far as the effect Coke might have on your teeth and breath, well, coffee isn’t any better for that.

  2. Yeah, and I checked online and it’s actually WORSE for you than Coke. At least, the only way I like it is when it’s got enough added to it so it doesn’t taste like coffee anymore, and by the time I’ve added all that, it’s got more fat than regular Coke does, and almost as much sugar. Plus the teeth and breath conundrum.

    Maybe I’ll go to my backup plan, and make a new year’s resolution to drink a lot more water. With No-Doz dissolved in it.

  3. Dang, the ‘regular coffee is stronger than espresso’ myth just refuses to die. It’s true regular coffee beans are stronger because of the lighter roast. However, espresso is ground very fine and made under pressure, which means more of the coffee stuff winds up in your cup than with regular coffee–so espresso, per unit of volume, usually has much more caffeine than drip coffee. The problem here is with disreputable purveyors who use way too much milk and nowhere near enough coffee to make their lattes and such–so a 16oz latte may have less caffeine than a 16oz drip coffee.

    Chuck, my recommendation to you would be to drink straight espresso. You may not like it, but at least it will be over quickly, as you’ll only need an ounce or two at a time. Follow that up with water (hydration is key, since you probably currently get most of your fluids from Coke) and sugar-free gum to deal with the breath issue.

    Or you could just take to chewing coca leaves.

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