When I was young younger, like ten, I hated coffee. The smell tricked my nose and convinced my mouth to taste. I expected homey and rich buttery flavors, but the taste was tar and bitter; harsh oil that stained my teeth and set in deep on my tongue.
And beer. My dad let me sip some once on a hike in the woods. It was like the pop-machine ran out of the syrup. It was fizzy water that sat for weeks like spoiled sugar-free apple juice.
Time passed as it does and I forgot to keep not liking these things. I gradually enlisted these reputable characters as friends to see what they could do for me. Coffee needed a donut and the beer needed chips close behind the sip. Through grueling practice, I talked my taste buds into thinking the unaccompanied forms of both were very good. Desirable even.
Coffee makes me feel better. Beer makes me feel better. I like to feel better. Some days I wake up and grumble and shuffle and stand bare foot on freezing cold bathroom tile and pee dehydrateadly. I know something holds the better and I’m gonna get it. I’m gonna get passed the headache throbbing behind my eyes with the coffee. I’m gonna numb some nerves with a couple or few at night. The tricky part is the balance of the beverages. The balance of feeling better; because you could get too better and then feel worse.
Another thing to know is these betters are suspiciously unhealthy in large quantities: Ulcer causing, teeth staining, liver pummeling, runny shitting, possibly addictive. The endless want of the betterness is sometimes called destructive but if friends are on board too, blame them. I have sat on the idea of yoga or some other zen causing body relaxment or tea to betterize a day. Something without harsh shaking effects or words that follow like, “I over did it.” I would have black tea; two bags to make it closer to the coffee. I would have fancy beer, to spend my way into intelligent drunkeness.
I need to drink things to live. Water mostly, but that gets old and predictable and too necessary to be enjoyed. I want to drink things that make me live good. Ceremonious beverages. Concocted liquids for life living. For anything’s birthday. For the heartbreak and loss. For any major (or minor) victory. I want to see a lantern of importance glowing in the heart of everything I see. Drown me in the hot and cold. My wet throat. My dampened stomach. My better feelings. Wring them all out in a big mason jar and cap it.