Tag Archives: coffee

Happy new year

Everyone knows the real New Year begins the day after Labor Day. January 1st is just a date that brings a new calendar but not much else of significance.

Historically, school starts the day after Labor Day, though many jurisdictions have bumped it to August. Congress is back, Washington traffic will build to its usual awful and the white shoes of those who observe proper etiquette are aptly stored in boxes until next May.

It’s time for resolutions. Last Labor Day, I gave up coffee, but the old demon has dripped back into my life. Time to filter out that and other bad habits that brewed over the summer—the trips to Baskin Robbins, the chips and dips, the carbonated beverages.

It used to be that Labor Day was marked by the Jerry Lewis Multiple Dystrophy telethon, but this year it was a condensed telethon sans Jerry. In honor of Jerry—and because I was a little down—I spent much of yesterday on the sofa, watching a marathon of Jerry Lewis movies on Antenna TV.

Several times over the weekend, I heard from parents who had dropped their freshmen off at college. While sitting with a friend Sunday night, we traded observations about how the college drop-off has changed over the last 30 years.

After filling multiple carts at Bed Bath and Beyond, parents now haul truckloads of electronics, appliances, shelving and bedding (coordinated between roommates) into kids’ dorms, make their beds, set out their color-coded file folders on their neatly organized desks, hang bulletin boards, place their folded tee shirts and underwear into school-issued dressers, set out mailing supplies for writing Grandma, and leave them behind with hugs, tearful goodbyes and as much advice as we can hurl at them while pulling out of the parking lot.

I shared with my friend a memory of moving into my freshman dorm. Granted, I was just moving across town. Regardless, on the night before classes began, I packed one large turquoise pleather suitcase, grabbed an afghan I had crocheted that summer, watched Jerry Lewis sing his ceremonial “You’ll Never Walk Alone” and drove myself to college.

It’s the day after Labor Day once again and I’m looking forward to a happy New Year. It was kind of a weird summer for me, so I’m not particularly sorry to leave it behind. Here’s to a new school year, to resolutions, to fabulous fall fabrics. And to Jerry Lewis.


Filed under Food, Health, Holidays, Movies, Television and Radio

Difficult breakup

Today is my first day without coffee since 1975.

After a beautiful 35-year friendship, I am going to try and break it off.

Without dwelling too much on my health issues of late, let’s just leave it that I’ve come to terms with the reality that the painfully strict diet my doctor has prescribed may actually help me. The flip side of this reality is that I can no longer have any of the beverages I like—including coffee, orange juice, milk, sparkling water, beer or wine. I also can’t have 90 percent of the foods I enjoy, which amount to about 95 percent of the foods in existence on the planet. Basically, if it’s acidic, or acid-producing, I can’t have it.

I am on Day 11 of almost total compliance. The final step is the coffee. Luckily, I don’t need to give up caffeine altogether, and I can have limited kinds of tea.

Even so, people battling addictions often say the substance itself is only part of the challenge. It’s the ritual that’s difficult to give up.

I’ve always said I could give up wine before I could give up coffee.

But it’s not about the caffeine. Coffee is my morning companion. I awake to its aroma. A mug of the warm elixir helps me greet the day with hope and enthusiasm. It goes so well with the newspaper.

I ask for your patience. If you see a mistake in the blog, or sense a more subdued tone than normal, please be kind. Remember I’ve just lost my best friend.

Remember there’s no blog tomorrow. I’ll be curled up with the Sunday paper and a steaming mug of hot water. I can’t even have lemon.


Filed under Food, Health