Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Coffee Talk

In my world, 
there's only one thing worse
than running out of toilet paper-
and that is
running out of coffee.

I will put on a pot of coffee
before I even comb my hair,
find my slippers,
or look outside to see the weather.

I am not really sure what happens
if I go without caffiene any
great length of time-
because I always keep back-up coffee
in the pantry.
For snow-bound days
and forgetfulness 
and all-nighters.

But, this morning, 
as I scraped the last grain of grounds
from my Maxwell House can,
I panicked.

Did I even have reserves left?
Was there any off-brand, generic,
Big Lot brew to even substitute?

Like a bear after honey,
I scoured the cabinets for coffee-
shaking canisters and opening crocks
and digging way back-
past the outdated baking powder
and the petrified garlic salt.

"Whoo-Hoo!" I shouted,
as my eye caught sight of
two small cans of flavored coffee.
It had been a gift years ago-
one of those Christmas packs
of coffee, tea and cocoa.
Luckily, I had the forethought
to store away what hadn't
been used that holiday season.

Even though I had never heard of
Zavida brand Affters coffee,
I was willing to consume anything
that would take the edge off
my ever-increasing homicidal mood.

"What's this?" my husband asked, 
setting his coffee cup down with a
look of nausea. 

"Duh. It's coffee, you silly," I perked up,
not yet tasting mine.

"Where did you scrape it up at?" he puckered,
"Another one of your rummage sale finds?"

"Well, Mr. Smartie Pants- I'll have you know
that it's 100% Arabica coffee, 
roasted and blended in Canada", I advised him.

"Kinda far from Columbia, wouldn't you say?'
he tested me.

"The label says that the flavor 
will go straight to the heart 
with comfort and joy," I read.

"Really?" he said sarcastically,
"And just what flavor is this?"

"Well..." I said, suddenly feeling
rather Lucille Ball-ish,
"I mixed some different kinds together
to have enough for a full pot.
It's Eggnog, Almond, Gingerbread,
and Hazelnut-
with a pinch of Pumpkin Pie
and Peppermint."

"Taste it," he commanded.

"Oh- it can't be that bad!" I scowled.
"Coffee is coffee. 
It's all made from ground beans.
And in this case, a bit of flavoring added."

I put my cup to my lips-
"Smells like...like... Pine-Sol...
tastes like...well...ugh...
it's not that bad..."

The drive to town this morning
helped wake me up.

I bought ten pounds of real Colombian coffee.

And when I got home,
I was out of toilet paper.