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Iced Coffee in the (Half-)Dead of Winter

On the bus, as I’m waiting for blood to circulate back to my numbed ears, I look out the window and I see people carrying iced coffees. Large ones. Perhaps I should rethink my theory that I’m insane. But, you know, maybe these people are made of volcanoes.

Ok, maybe I’m still insane…

But at least I’m not crazy enough to drink iced coffee when it’s this cold out.

This morning was day 1 of my new project: being able to wake up like a normal person. Yesterday, after sleeping way too late yet again, I searched for articles about how to wake up more easily. Some of the tips were stupid, but some were helpful, and the most helpful-sounding ones were repeated over and over again.

  • Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
  • Take some time to “wind down” before bed (I’m giving it at least half an hour). That means turn off electronics, don’t eat anything heavy, maybe meditate.
  • Turn lights on/open blinds right when you wake up. I’ve always noticed this definitely does help, but now that the internet has confirmed my observation, it’s officially true.

The articles actually suggest setting your alarm every single day, including weekends… I’m not going to do that this weekend (at least, not both days), and not on Christmas, but I will probably start to do it soon. My winter-induced urge to hibernate does not match up with my daily life. Supposedly, if you stick to the routine, after a little while you’ll fall asleep and wake up naturally at those times.

I’m also going to try, for a little while, to reduce my caffeine intake after 2 or 3 pm. I’ve been known to drink coffee right up until sometimes 9pm, although usually I stop closer to 6 or 7. However, I think that until I get used to falling asleep earlier, having unnecessary caffeine in my system probably won’t be helpful.

I’m not a decaf person. I’ve rarely ever had it in my life. Does it taste different? Is it worth even getting it? Because I feel like it would change the flavor. Maybe it’s just the idea of it–if I didn’t know it was decaf, it would taste exactly the same. I want to do this experiment. Someone, please give me decaf coffee, tell me it’s regular, and we’ll see if I can tell the difference.

Probably not. But I do like to think I would.

That also means less black tea in the evenings. I have no idea what I’m going to drink now. Probably water and green or herbal teas.

However, as I might have mentioned, my policy is not to deprive myself of foods (apparently, this is the European way?) or drinks, so if I really want chai or coffee after work, I’ll get it. I just might hold off for this week, to try to get myself used to actually falling asleep.

If you’re like me, and you’re not a morning person at all in terms of energy, you might like to hear how this project goes. I’ll update occasionally as my sleep patterns change or don’t change, so pop back in next Monday or so.

In the meantime, avoid iced coffee if you live in New England (or Canada, or somewhere else where it’s almost winter). For me.

Voting day breakfast


This is the breakfast I got to have to reward myself for getting out to vote early enough to actually have time for breakfast afterward.

At Cafenation in Brighton. I ordered the Spanish Sunrise omelet, stuffed full of beans and cheese and a delicious salsa fresca. There was cilantro in my eggs! Perfect! It came with nicely ripe melon and a stack of buttered Iggy’s toast. I was so happy about the toast–so often when your breakfast comes with toast, they fail both to avoid burning it and to put the butter on before it’s cooled off too much to melt it. Cafenation, doing toast right! I almost never get to have this type of breakfast on a weekday.

And of course, an iced coffee because it’s a hot day! I considered chai, but coffee mornings are most wonderful. But if you don’t like coffee, Cafenation has really good iced tea, including one of their summer drinks, Thai iced tea (which I just have to get a few times every summer, it’s delicious but very sweet).

They also had tons of day old bread available, so I got one bag of baked goods (the scone will be either a mid-morning or mid-afternoon snack) and one of ciabatta rolls. They aren’t hard at all! I love when the day old bread is still fresh and soft.

That’s my breakfast spiel. Did you vote? Did you have a nice breakfast? Are you thinking about iced coffee and/or tea? I need to know!


**By the way, that out-of-place clothing tag on the table is actually my bookmark.

Monday Madness: . . .

I really should do this first thing in the morning, so I don’t forget/almost forget. But that would probably mean waking up earlier, and waking up on Monday sucks enough as it is.

I survived without any coffee today. It was odd. I didn’t have any half and half, and I still don’t like black coffee unless it’s iced (and also really good), so I had tea instead. Tea is always recommended as a “substitute” for coffee, but it tastes so different that it is not a proper replacement. Tea should not be considered a coffee stand-in, but a tasty beverage in its own right. The range of flavors for tea is much more dramatic than coffee, which always tastes kind of the same on certain basic levels. Tea tastes drastically different depending on with what it is infused.

Chai is my favorite. Chai is like the god of beverages. Well, I guess that would have to be water, actually. This paragraph makes no sense, please ignore it.

I don’t really have anything interesting to say right now. Monday Madness fail. Oh well. I’m tired and I had no coffee today.

Coffee? Tea? What to do!

This is not a post about which one I prefer, because I really like them both in different circumstances.

First of all, I believe that people who think coffee tastes bad just have never had good coffee. And that is sad. By the way, instant coffee is terrible. It tastes like death’s ass. Seriously.

This post was brought on by some happenings of today. Let me explain…

Without boring you with the details, I didn’t have time for coffee before work this morning. It was very sad. I don’t have coffee every morning, but I do have it often and it’s a nice way to perk up. It’s also quite delicious. It was clear I would have to settle on tea today, so I thought, there’s Irish Breakfast in the kitchen if I remember correctly, I’ll have some of that.

When I got to work and went to make my tea, I read the “decaf” label on the box just in time to stop opening the individual teabag package. I hope it’s clear by now: I was incredibly disappointed. While I do really like the taste of Irish Breakfast, the whole point was really the caffeine.

“Fine, I’ll just have PG Tips.” I acquired a box of 40 or 50 PG Tips black tea bags a while ago from someone who didn’t want it. I said that I would take it so that it wouldn’t be wasted. It’s sitting on a shelf in my office right now. So I went back to my desk and dropped one of their little pyramids in it.

It has now been officially decided: I hate PG Tips. I don’t know what it is about this tea, but it makes me feel physically sick when I drink it. Before today I had only noticed it happening when I had a cup of coffee soon before, so I thought it was just the combination that didn’t agree with me. Now I know that was not the case. Rather, some quality of PG Tips black tea makes me feel like throwing up about 80% of the times I drink it.

I hate to give bad reviews; the stuff I want to complain about always seems so circumstantial. If I’ve been to a restaurant several times and it’s sucked every time, I just don’t go there or recommend it to my friends. I’m not going to waste time slamming them on yelp or in a blog post. What does that actually accomplish? Do yelp reviews actually affect a place’s business? I’m seriously asking. Anyone know?

Well, that was a digression. As I was saying, I hate to give bad reviews, but I am completely done with this product. I still have a fair number of teabags left in this box and I’m pretty sure I’m going to throw them away. I can’t drink that stuff anymore, I hate the sensation I get afterward — and I’m not going to keep it if I’m not going to drink it. I would offer it to someone else, but … considering how little I like it, why would I want to make someone else experience that?

Although the monkey guy on their website, if you go to it, is pretty funny.


I’m just going to stick to what I know. Trader Joe’s brand tea, Twinings, Stash, Adagio. Give me some Lapsang Souchong.

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