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You flick the switch on the back of the Keurig in Break Room Two. Putting on your best “Please don’t talk to me” face, you dump the stale water from yesterday’s blitzkrieg of k-cups into the sink and wait as the cold, fresh water from the faucet slowly fills the tank up. An intern brushes past you as you methodically get a clean coffee cup out of a cabinet and place it on the platform that will soon give you what you came here for.
It is the lifeblood of offices all over the world. It’s aroma haunts break rooms from New York City to Los Angeles and everywhere in between. Some are luckier than others. If your company is rolling in petty cash and treats their employees with respect, you might have fresh beans that you can grind up right there in the kitchen. Perhaps you’re a man or woman of principal and elect to brew your own coffee and lug it into work with you.
You could buy a decent cup of coffee at Starbucks or Biggby, but that would be the third time this week and you’re not a goddamn millionaire. Maybe you’re an old-school twelve cup pot of Folgers office. Statistically speaking, though, your place of work is more than likely using a Keurig machine, which dishes out appallingly mediocre one cup servings of watered down coffee. No matter what it is – Green Mountain, Starbucks, Folgers – it all sucks. Whoever invented the Keurig knew what he was doing. He made a machine that requires the consumer to buy k-cups, which dispenses just enough ground up coffee to not make you think that you’re just drinking a cup of hot water. I guarantee you that prisoners in correctional institutions all across South America drink better coffee than the 9-5 desk jockey making $50K a year in America.
It’s Monday morning in the cubicle farm and you’ve arrived at work twenty minutes late. Your person smells of stale Miller Lite and cigarettes, and the only remedy is a piping hot mug of Green Mountain Breakfast Blend in the trusty old office Keurig. But you don’t have one eight ounce serving of coffee and call it quits. You take it farther than it should go because you’ve got a throbbing headache and think that a shit load of caffeine is going to get you back to tip-top shape to surf the internet for the rest of the day. What started as one cup soon becomes two, and why wouldn’t you have a third cup with a splash of milk and some sugar while you eat that month old Chewy bar that’s been sitting next to your keyboard collecting dust?
There aren’t a lot of things worse than being hungover at work. But drinking copious, violent, amounts of coffee is a recipe for disaster. Assuming that you don’t have access to breakfast foods or any sort of snack with nutritional value, ripping coffee after coffee is only going to end in disaster. An empty stomach full of the demon diuretic will leave you on the toilet regretting those chili cheese dogs you decided you had to have on Saturday night after taking down five 22-ounce Miller Lites and a few shots of rail tequila. You can’t continue on like this, drinking cup after cup after cup counting down the minutes until you can take a lunch break and nap in the handicapped bathroom stall. But what is the alternative? Not drink coffee? You and I both know it’s not a ‘want’ anymore. It’s a need, and without it, you’re not shit. .