“The addiction of our generation is readily available widely acceptable.”
October 6, 2014 | The Coffee Table Book | Fall 2014
It started off slow and stealthy, without notice. A habit observed; a sign of adulthood and graduating taste buds. I started because my father did it, and did it with love. Hefty pure doses in the morning continuing on through out the day, communally imbibed. Really it was a genetic disposition. Parents who themselves rely on twice-daily doses are likely to pass on similar traits to their children. I went through different forms of consuming, per suggestion testing out potency and flavor: large steaming cups of black drip to syrupy two-sip shots; skim then almond, moving on to raw crystals. It was all fun and games, a braggable maturity and superiority among high schoolers, then a snobby past time among fellow university students. Familially supported and societally enabled, I descended further, frequenting the locales with the best product, tracking the monetary outlay in order to budget for following months.
Its attraction is in the aroma, the warmth, the momentary escape from the drudgery of life. Grind, pound, pourover, percolate: repeat. Monkey see, monkey do. Wondering what the connection is between loving the taste or loving the effect. I am too far gone to know. My trajectory was progressively towards fast acting strength. Once tasted it was hard to go back – nothing could compete with straight double shots occasionally dressed up. It got to the point where I challenged myself with quad-shots, my dealer verifying the volume was my intention.
The first step is acknowledgement, then recovery. Too many Day Ones, always having to start from scratch. Attempting to limit or to space instances of consumption results in quick return to overuse and abuse. I love and hate it, this roller coaster ride of euphoria. Every environmental stimulus calls out to me, pushing me to work at that shop, confronting me with friends who have desired product in hand, fighting my brain that feels like wool. I have quit enough times to wonder if it will ever hold, if I will ever be free. Each time it is sparked by a different aspect: money, overdosing, headaches, cosmetics, my parents’ addiction. Rarely do I receive the support needed or the distance required. The addiction of our generation is readily available and widely acceptable. Coffee serves to stimulate, to unite, and enjoy. My body says I am done with it.
Illustration by Geoff Bates.