Every workday I have the same routine. I wake up when my alarm goes off at 7:20 a.m. (after the second snooze), sit on the edge of my bed and mindlessly scroll through social media for ten minutes. Then I shower and pack everything I’m going to need for the full day of work and night class, because I won’t be back home until 10 p.m. I take the Brown Line to work and distract myself from being in sardine can full of other people’s coffee breath by reading the news/checking SportsCenter updates. When I get to work I boot my computer up, review my tasks for the day, and chug a large cup of water to get my brain started. Then I begin working. With no coffee in my system. I don’t brew up a pot of special roast at home while I wait for my shower to warm up, I don’t stop at the Starbucks in the lobby of my office building to get an espresso, and I don’t take advantage of the free Keurig with 8 different K-cup flavors in my break room. Just a large glass of water, and I am good to go.
My friends tell me I’m either a psychopath or a terrible employee, but the truth is I just never got in the coffee habit. In high school when all my friends started drinking Frappucinos that were practically hot candy bars in a cup, I never made the switch. Even in college when we had free coffee in the dining hall/frat house kitchen, I never saw the appeal. Now that I am an adult (allegedly), it seems like I just missed the caffeine train. Maybe it’s because I’m not a fan of warm drinks because they make me sweat like the Italian I am, or maybe it’s because I don’t like the taste and never gave myself a chance to acquire it, but for whatever reason I am now the guy that doesn’t drink coffee.
People will constantly try and get me to start drinking, but I’m pretty sure it’s just because they’re afraid of my super power. I’ve seen my parents (5+ cup a day drinkers) and my friends fall the fuck apart when coffee is not readily available to them, and I don’t want to depend on that crutch. If tomorrow a wildfire takes out every coffee plant in the world, all productivity will decrease immediately by 30% except me. I will be a beacon of consistency amidst a bleak world, and recruiters far and wide will throw money at me to work for their companies. They won’t be happy with the results, since what praise I receive for being productive I undo by banging my coworkers, but they’ll be too tired and decaffeinated to send me to HR.
I know many of you out there are hating on me for defying the caffeinated way of life and thinking I’m better than you. But deep down, you know it’s true. You know that without coffee you’re sluggish, more irritable, and likely can’t poop. I rely on coffee for none of those things. Granted, I’m not the fastest mover in the morning, and I’m not one of those asshole “morning people” who wake up at dawn with a smile on their face, but I can get things done. I wake up neutral, not already in the red, not craving a cup o’ joe until I can begin to be a human again. And even without coffee, my morning shits are regular as fuck. I’m talking 9:35 a.m. on the dot. You could set the train schedule by my bathroom trips, if that’s the weird world we lived in.
I think people’s biggest issue with my lack of caffeine intake, however, is what would happen if I start to drink coffee. They hear me talk about how I just drink water in the morning to wake myself up and they get angry. “You’re not even using your full potential! If you drank coffee you would be crushing it at work Frank Underwood-style!” Believe me, I wish. The truth is I’ve had coffee a few times before work to see what would happen, and it doesn’t have a noticeable effect. For someone who almost never drinks it, even one cup should work, but all it does is make my hands shakier and thus slower on the keyboard. I don’t feel more alert or motivated at all. So while everyone else is spending a fortune to wake up in the morning, I’ll keep my caffeine intake where it belongs- in my vodka Redbulls at 2 a.m..
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