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they all wonder

Let’s talk about why I like coffee so much.

Today I snuck into a high-brow cafe at lunch time in my “just doing laundry” outfit, simply to sit in the far back corner and drink their strong, smokey coffee. I hid my mess of hair in a too-big, too-ugly, god-awful-acrylic knit hat (which I *did not* make) and kept my jacket zipped tight against my chest so no one would see my worn out t-shirt . The waitress, slim and dressed entirely in black, brought me a warm porcelain mug with its miniature pitcher of cream. Perfect. I inhaled and paused everything in order to fully appreciate the moment.

I associate coffee with the best moments I ever had with my father, when I was young enough to still think the staunch and steaming stuff was something only an adult could ever love. My dad would take a bitterly dark cup of coffee and sweeten it, cool it with ounces of cream, then remove the crusts from slices of cheap, white Wonder Bread, which he would then squeeze  into tight rolls, dip into the coffee and feed to my brother and I. This was adult food- just like dark chocolate, mushrooms and red wine- transformed into something a child could adore; warm, milky and sugary as syrup. We loved it. I remember my coffee-colored father with his coffee-scented breath in the morning after he’d smoked his first cigarette, how his night-grown whiskers prickled against my cheek when he kissed me, murmuring endearments in his native Spanish. It didn’t happen very often, or for very long, but to this day I can’t sip a cup of coffee without feeling very young and very loved.

That’s why I like it.

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2 thoughts on “they all wonder

"The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook." Julia Child

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