The best part of my morning routine is preparing and consuming a cup of coffee. It’s not just a soothing ritual; it has become a necessary aspect of my daily operations. (If I don’t have caffeine in my veins by 11 a.m., the delightfully grouchy side of myself emerges. And by “delightfully” I actually mean “terribly.”)
I’m not picky. I’ll drink almost any coffee. I usually pop a K-Cup into a machine and push a button. On days when I am feeling adventurous I’ll add a splash of sugar free vanilla syrup. But the one addition I nearly always insist on is a sploosh of skim milk.
I don’t know why I do this. I think coffee tastes better black. In fact, that’s how I used to drink it. It doesn’t really add an unusual flavor or distinctive taste. The only benefit to this addition seems to be cooling off the hot liquid, which is necessary when I am behind schedule in the mornings so I can gulp it down more quickly.
But last week, when pouring my usual sploosh (for reference= one sploosh equals two splashes), I realized why I actually add milk: Because it is beautiful when the liquids mix. It is gradual blending of colors. The coffee cup now seems to hold something alive; something that swirls and blooms like a tree and slithers like a serpent and even looks like an atomic bomb explosion. Sometimes I add a teaspoon more, just to see the phenomenon once again.
After this revelation, I went all Socrates on myself and tried to philosophize a deeper meaning or clever metaphor for this phenomena. Does it mean that life is one big cup of crappy coffee that we can control with our attitude or outlook, which would be represented by milk? Or that there is beauty in unusual things? Is it a metaphor for the growth I have made in my life? Or of the unstable and continually swirling patterns that make up humanity?
I then had another realization—It doesn’t have a deeper meaning. I was overthinking things, as I am prone to do. (Plus, my mother doesn’t drink black coffee. Maybe I picked it up from her.)
Anyways, the moral of this story is an encouragement to add some milk to your coffee or tea the next time you have a hot beverage. And don’t overthink things.
P.S. McDonalds is offering free coffee during breakfast hours through April 13. You’re welcome.