I don’t know the exact month or year I stopped my morning “joe.” No, not the blowhard talking head on MSNBC, I mean the real morning joe.
I remember stopping my first addiction, Pall Malls, on February 10, 1971. I was close to three packs a day. Sixty cancer sticks each and every day. I remember reaching in my shirt pocket to pull out a phantom cigarette for the next year or so. It was a tough addiction to quit, but I did it cold turkey. I also had a $100 bet with a friend. He still owes me, but I can’t collect. He died of lung cancer fifteen years ago.
I quit my beloved coffee cold turkey in either ’88 or ’89. I don’t’ remember. I do remember the physical hell I went through for a week. As a traveling salesman I was on the California freeways daily. My front windshield was a constant blur of flashing stars (in the daytime) hallucinations and pounding headaches. It lasted five days. Five days of hell. I quit coffee because I couldn’t say no to a cup. My customers always offered one and I always accepted. I loved it, even the murky bitter crap made in a dirty percolator in the back room of a music store in Yucaipa.
It was no wonder I was having knifing pains in my gut in the late afternoon hours. But, being a little slow on the draw, I figured it had to be stomach cancer or ulcers. For a few months I didn’t know what was happening to my stomach. Then one day it didn’t hurt. The next day it did. I figured out the only difference was I didn’t drink coffee the afternoon of the pain-free day. Hurray!
A normal man would have said to himself, “cut back, dude, cut back on the java.” But I was angry, just like I was when I had my coughing fits from smoking. I was not going to allow one thing in this world to addict me. I quit coffee that day….cold turkey.
I’ve been told and I’ve read that coffee is pretty damn good for me. In moderation of course. It’s sure a lot better for me than the Chai Tea I’ve been drinking for twenty some years. (Lots of sugar, milk and preservatives in my favorite type)
We have a Keurig because we have only had one morning coffee drinker in the family. We have every type of K-cup ever made. Some even without flavors. About a month ago I decided to try coffee. I chose some French Roast something or other. Yuk. I spit it out and stayed with the Chai.
Well today, I successfully drank and somewhat enjoyed a K-cup of Medium Roast Donut Shop. Not bad. And I feel my brain ticking. Very cool.
Bye Chai. I will not give you up completely, but mostly.