Today was the day I finally remembered to bring my thermos with me to the campus coffee shop, which is within convenient sight of all of my classes and taunts me regularly. The first day. Finally.
I’ve been drinking coffee semi-often in the last year (once a week is semi-often for me, go ahead and laugh, junkies), which means I’ve been using disposable plastic coated paper cups…which I know leach chemicals and go straight to the landfill. But I get it anyway, because of reasons.
It doesn’t make me less tired/more awake/more focused…I mean, I clean more. So there is that. But I am trying to get better, and part of getting better is pushing through the day – and nothing reminds me more of pushing through a rough day like a nice hot cop of hot coffee, just the way my favorite coffee addict, Cortni, makes it for me (seriously though I remember not even liking brewed coffee and this girl would hand me a mug and I would be in HEAVEN. Mad skills).
Granted, the coffee I’ve been buying is mostly fair-trade organic, I shouldn’t be drinking it anyway. Not only is the caffeine terrible for you, especially when you’re me and add a butt-load of sugar to it, sometimes soymilk or even cream, but coffee production is SO NOT EVEN REMOTELY SUSTAINABLE UGHHH. I’m going to be a bad journalist/blogger/writer of any kind, worse than usual, and not link or footnote any research because I need to go to bed (read: stay up all night reading this southern ghost mystery I’m halfway through like always), but trust me when I say, coffee farming is eating up the rainforest like crazy. I’ve seen it firsthand, in Costa Rica. The US is a huge consumer of coffee, as is Europe, and NOWHERE in those two vast swathes of the planet can coffee be grown. I mean, yes, Hawaii is a state that grows coffee, but it’s not contiguous. Shipping isn’t so environmentally friendly, either.
SO, how to assuage my conscience? I mean, clearly I can easily just stop drinking coffee again. I am okay without lattes, and I shouldn’t be drinking milk or soymilk anyway (milk could be unethical/hormoned out, soymilk does stuff to your hormones; again, no evidence, just google it if you don’t believe me). I am long past the days of drinking caramel machiattos with four shots of espresso in them (age 17). I hate busy coffee shops: too loud to talk, too public to work or write. The sound of coffee grinders give me mild PTSD from previous serving hell-job. But part of living a pura vida is feeling the “pura” not the “Spanish word for restricted,” so I don’t want to take it away from myself. SO. Options.
1. Glue that damned thermos to my hand OR
2. Suture a cup-holder for it into my upper arm, kinda like those jogging sleeves for your mp3 player.
3. Buy coffee from the San Rafael Sustainable Coffee Initiative (now Thrive Farmers).* Buy human powered, non-plastic coffee grinder. Buy glass & metal french press. Violate my no-more-new-things sensibility. Drink lots of coffee and feel guilty about cost and shipping from Costa Rica.
I am not going to do 2 or 3, obvs. So remembering the thermos and just exercising a little restraint until the phase passes is the plan. I’ve only got about 3-4 months of college left, give or take, for this round anyway. That’s only like 12 more cups of coffee. Maybe 15 if you factor in finals. I just need to calm it down. Coffee makes me jittery anyway. I am already jittery enough like how am I even typing this right now seriously.
*Thrive Farmers are great people to buy coffee from. They take sustainability seriously. I met Luis Alejandro Garcia Villalobos and visited Finca Santa Marta when I was in Costa Rica in 2010. I learned that not only is coffee farming mostly ecologically unethical, but often farmers get shafted by the distributors who buy their coffee. Coffee growing is labour-intensive, y’all, and labour is expensive. Buying directly from a co-operative or farmer’s collective like Thrive Farmers is a good way to see where your money goes. And the coffee isn’t bad either ;] Here is a bad picture of me drinking probably my third cup at Finca Santa Marta in 2010:
Anyway. Green tea is better for you. Unicorns. Cats in sweaters. Ghost mysteries. Pura vida!
p.s. Oh yeah I am totally still on Facebook and let’s be real, coffee takes my normal crazy to new levels of “What is she on and can I have some, too?”