Caffeine Menagerie

1227 words by attila written on 2003–01–21, last edit: 2016–08–06, tags: snarkPrevious post: ReligionNext post: And now, a message from the Chief Dissonance Officer

Coffee Drinkers: The heroin addicts of the caffeine world: serious, determined, set on their own particular preferences, not interested in what you have to say about the matter. Voltaire drank at least 40 cups of strong coffee a day, and was a force to be reckoned with right up until the moment his liver, pancreas, kidneys, and several other internal organs simultaneously dropped off and fell out of his ass. He turned blue, took one last swig of coffee, and exploded on the spot: a warrior’s death fit for the King of Caffeine. You hear his descendants in line in front of you now a days, mumbling things like No, I don’t need any fucking room for cream in that, thank you very much, I’ll just inject it here while I wait for you to ring it up… I see you’re taking your sweet time about that, aren’t you… probably a tea drinker…

Tea Drinkers: Cravat-wearing, pinky-pointing posh.people, who, none the less, can become surprisingly vicious if deprived of their cuppa. Prefer their fix with light snacks, usually heavy on the carbs. In general, tea drinkers are bureaucrats, functionaries, Oxford dons, people with accents, and Unitarians. A preference for lemon is almost universally an indication of deep, dark sexual perversions and/or Catholicism (often lapsed). Keep these people away from sheep and small children, but it’s okay to let them do your books.

Coke Fiends: These people rate Animal House in their top 10 favorite movies, but don’t have the balls to drink liquor or smoke dope. Instead, they arise from slumber, stumble to the ’fridge and pour a long draught of the Black Water of Capitalism down their throats as if it were orange juice. Generally accompany their fix with a bag of chips or some other mass-produced, cancer-causing, “flavor”-dusted, deep-fried garbage. Make little sculptures out of their “dead soldiers”, often lining the doorways or windows with their fanciful creations. Networking people are often Coke fiends, which is why your routes are always fucked up.

Other Soda Jerks: We include in this category advocates of Mountain Dew, Pepsi, and especially Dr. Pepper, a substance so vile that my spies tell me several extra-terrestrial civilizations have signed treaties quarantining Earth from interplanetary commerce until we stop producing it. This category fans out fairly quickly, encompassing acolytes of Jolt Cola (which is to coffee as methadone is to heroin), RC Cola (granola-eaters and other people who wear leather coats with fringes on them often sneak these when their tree-hugging friends are in the toilet), and various “power” drinks that supposedly contain occult substances derived from the internal juices of rare Amazonian snakes. These people generally wish they were coffee drinkers, but don’t have the stones.

The Hot Cocoa/Chocolate Continuum: Yes, darlings, there is usually caffeine in chocolate and other derivatives of the cocoa-leaf. “Chocoholics,” as they fancifully call themselves, are generally five sizes overweight, have a penchant for romance novels, and wear French cuffs and frilly clothing at inappropriate times (e.g. while trying to pick up dates at a K-Mart). These people just want to feel good, and thus completely miss the point of caffeine addiction, which is, rather, to stave off the misery of existence for another lousy half an hour. If you can’t see the difference between these two points of view, you’re probably stuffing a Bon Bon into your mouth as you read this. Coffee drinkers sometimes sneak a quick square of bittersweet chocolate, to supplement the caffeine in a double espresso when they’re on the run, but it’s because they need all the caffeine they can get to keep from throttling your ill-behaved children; don’t confuse these poor, lost souls with chocolate people, it’s just that they have no scruples whatsoever.

Permanent Quitters: Mealy-mouthed dilettantes that are barely worth mentioning, but they must be included, since, at any given time, if you took a sample of their blood they would test positive for caffeine. You’ll know you’ve met one of these losers because they’ll apologize profusely for the cappucino they’re guzzling (with extra milk, and make it frothy, please, thanks!). They are perennially “trying to quit.” Let me tell you something, Mr. and Ms. “Trying to Quit,” if you’re trying to quit, you’re also trying not to quit, so why don’t you just have a Coke and a smile and shut the fuck up. Nobody likes a quitter, anyway. You give coffee drinkers, and addiction in general, a bad name. Often end up as Tea drinkers, because they’re too pathetic to actually quit, and find it easier to rationalize their addiction if they intersperse it with hairy-fairy herbal teas and and other “wellness” horseshit. Don’t kid yourselves: you’re addicted, and you’re going down with the rest of us.

Pill Poppers: These occupy the lowest rung on the caffeine evolutionary ladder. Advocates of Stay-Up(tm), No-Doze(tm), etc. are in this category, and what a pasty, pimple-ridden little slice of humanity it is. What I don’t get about these people is their pathetic choice of drug: if you’re going to pop pills, why pick on caffeine, a tender little molecule that never really hurt anyone (in the short term, anyway; cf. Voltaire). Pill-popping has a long and glorious past in the USA, and there are pills a plenty for every possible purpose. Taking caffeine pills is like saying to the world: yes, it’s true my powers of concentration are lacking, and yes, it’s true that I’ve wasted too much time listening to Phish and trying to “get with” this Deadhead chick, but I have a paper due and this is my idea of taking action along those lines. Great Scott, lad, why not just kill yourself now and save us the trouble of bumping into you when you’re working as the night manager at our local Taco Bell. If you want to pop pills, try methamphetamines, you can score them off of any competent biker or trucker, and a little dab will do ya… for a while.

Crossover Addicts: Finally, we come to the category that bleeds: caffeine addicts who don’t have the decency to stay in a single cage of the menagerie, but, rather, who prefer to dabble here and there. I’m pretty sure that there’s not a whole lot that pisses me off worse than indecision of this kind… I could be wrong, of course, but I’ll be damned if I’ll admit it. If you know someone who sometimes orders coffee, and other times orders tea, who sneaks a coke at lunch occasionally (when “there’s nothing else to drink”), then you probably also have a sneak pill-popper/Chocoloholic on your hands as well. Intervention is indicated in such cases, preferably with handcuffs and cudgels. These people clearly have no self-control whatsoever, and must be clubbed, repeatedly, until they either come around, or die. The bad news is that, if they do come around, they’ll be insufferably, evangelically unaddicted, but the good news is that they probably won’t notice if they die.

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