As you can probably tell from the amount of times it gets mentioned on this blog, I am a diehard coffee drinker. Aside from when I’m sick, I drink it every day, multiple times a day. Doesn’t matter if it’s the substantial home-brew from my French press, mediocre (yet surprisingly okay) offerings from the local gas station, or the thin (surprisingly less than okay) cup of coffee from the one-cup maker in the office. If I drink it all and as much of it as I can get.
My ideal coffee consumption is something like this: a cup or two in the morning, one in the afternoon, and possibly two more before bedtime. I know people who balk at drinking coffee a mere hour or two before bedtime, as they claim it would keep them up all night. I know what this is like – I feel the same way after I’ve drunk nearly two pots of the stuff and tried to go to sleep. Anything under five cups, I’ll still sleep like a baby. (Well… a slightly jittery, jumpy baby, but still….)
I can wax rhapsodic on all the reasons I love coffee some other time, but suffice to say, even though I know I should be drinking better, purer, healthier things, I can’t shake my attachment to the taste, the heat, the ritual. My adoration, devotion, and complete sublimation to coffee has steered me clear of at least one hazard: energy drinks.
I stay away from energy drinks.
It’s in a large, heavy can, usually black or silver or orange or green. It’s got a fearsome glow, and its name is spelled out in big, mean letters, one or two words only, scrawled sideways or sprawling around the circumference of the can.
ROCKSTAR. Monster. Cocaine (seriously). Bawls. Full Throttle.
RELOAD. HYPE. VAULT. Blue Charge. Battery. AMP.
You can see that refrigerated section before any other in the convenience store. It emanates a power, as if dozens of demons are entrapped in those 16 ounce cans, just waiting to be imbibed and released to create havoc in your body. The look is anger, rage, ramped up adrenaline coursing through type face and aluminum.
The drink itself is practically a warning to stay away. It takes like fruit juice run through a car motor. When cold, it vaguely stings as you drink it. Don’t even think about drinking it at room temperature. The point is to grab it from the cooler and have it half drunk by the time you pay for it. Chug the second half then get ready to ROCK. YOUR. DAY.
Aside from the possible dangers of these drinks – which as a person who drinks coffee at irresponsible levels, I really can’t be judgemental of – it’s really the attitude that scares me off. It’s so aggressive, so macho. It exudes an image of extreme sports, fast cars, Dane Cook. It reminds me of people I don’t want to be around, bars I don’t want to go to, lifestyles I don’t want to lead.
When I’m in a convenience store, and I’m looking for a beverage to boost my energy, I’ll walk straight past the intimidating energy drinks to the stale hot coffee every time.