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Of black beans and extra whipped cream

By GARRICK SEE

You’re probably not there yet, but you will be come April. That uncontrollable urge to succumb to temptation and possibly beat someone else to the punch as well. You promise yourself that you would quit, but somehow the circumstances require that you partake it in order to get some actual work done. That my friend, is when every college student roams around in panic mode hoping to find a place at a coffee shop.

What is it about aromatic beans that cause this kind of stir, especially among the young’uns? Back then, most college students would just buckle down in their rooms scratching their heads and breaking pencils just to try to focus on one subject, but it’s this 21st century American trend of turning coffee into a better alternative than, say, 5 Hour Energy or Redbull (nothing against them, of course).

The French have a different take on le café than most Americans do. It starts with a classic eight course dinner that includes everything from appetizers and cheeses to entrées and desserts. Coffee would be the cherry on top of a very satisfying French dinner, and not used for burning midnight oil studying Bio-Physics-Orgo-Some-Sort-Of-Science-Subject. God bless the French though for utilizing coffee as their “end all, be all” of French culture, but it doesn’t mean that Americans have abused that usage.

We like to think of coffee as a means to an end of what we aspire to achieve. Be it as an energizing drink for studying, as a warm conversation connector between two people and also not to mention as a cool drink and wet dapper on heads during a hot summer day. Some like it hot (brownie points if you get the reference), some like it cold, some like it super sweet and some like it pure black. I’m proud to say that I’m a fan of all those kinds because they serve me well depending on different situations. I’ve even been on my first coffee date with a very attractive but very unavailable person before, so it still has its ups and downs.

Finals week is always a big plus for coffee shop businesses because students would just pile in like it’s Black Friday all over again and one can never get enough of coffee, unless your hands are shaking from not taking it, which then you should probably consult someone about that. Even as I’m writing this now at Biggby, I look at all the customers around me with coffee cups of different sizes, tastes and temperatures, and feel lucky to be included in this club that doesn’t require one to be at a coffee-holics seminar just because I enjoy a little bit of java every now and then. And with a final sip of my slightly cold hot mocha, I bid you adieu et jusqu’à ce que la prochaine fois, mon café des amis!

gsee@lanthorn.com

Published February 13, 2013 in Global Perspectives

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