Friday, September 23, 2005

Wake up and smell the coffee

I finally did it. I finally went and bought myself a coffee maker [1]. And not just any old coffee maker but one of those ones where you can pre-program it to brew at a certain time, so that I woke up this morning to the smell of freshly brewed coffee filling my room (now there's an alarm clock I could live with), the day dripping slowly into my consciousness.

I just love the smell of coffee. There's something acute and finely balanced about it, something witty and almost ironic. Like the smell were smirking at you. It doesn't perk me up - it sharpens me as though I were a pencil, bringing my alertness to that fine, thin point where I'm ready to take on the world again. Instant coffee doesn't smell this way - it has a sterile, almost plastic smell - the smell of machinery and processing. Freshly brewed coffee, on the other hand, has a fragrance like polished metal, like smelling the grease on the railway tracks after the train has just passed.

Of course, this also means that despite myself I've ended up with one more possession to take care of. Worse, with the coffee maker in place I'm actually considering abandoning my all styrofoam policy and actually buying something non-disposable to drink out of. Like a mug (see picture above - it's a real mug shot. Heh). Next thing you know I'll be wanting to own land. Or sofas. Sigh.

[1] Technically I bought the thing a week ago on the Internet - it just got delivered yesterday. This meant that I spent most of last week suffering withdrawal pangs from not drinking the coffee from the coffee maker I hadn't got yet. It's such a wonderful feeling when the world finally catches up with you.


Veena said...


Remember this?

"You'll be greeted
by a nice cup of coffee
when you get to heaven
and strains of angelic harmony.

But wouldn't you be devastated
if they only serve decaffeinated
while from the percolators of hell

your soul was assaulted
by Satan's fresh espresso smell?

Falstaff said...

Veena: Of course. How could I forget?

Or this:

"I place the cup on its saucer
with a most tender care
as if it were a chalice
& say the litany:
El Salvador
& one side of my heart
tastes white & sweet
like cane sugar
& the other,
like coffee,
bitter & black."

The ramblings of a shoe fiend said...

ah ha! what a lovely piece of writing on my most favourite thing in the world. if i go to sleep at night with a smile on my face it's because of the knowledge that coffee will greet me when i awake!

The Black Mamba said...

"has a fragrance like polished metal, like smelling the grease on the railway tracks after the train has just passed"

freshly polished metal...(polished wood I can imagine)... grease on tracks...?! I now understand, why I never understood coffee or its aficionados!

Neela said...


can you send me details of where you ordered this from? would also like to wake up to coffee each morning, but am too lazy to shop online. (and waaaay too lazy to open my school email account to mail you off-blog).


J. Alfred Prufrock said...

I should put you in a dedicated section on my blog-roll now. This is so good - evocative, imaginative prose AND coffee.

I suspect, however, that certain phrases in there are a little self-conscious, written for effect rather than personal satisfaction. It is a measure of your competence that the whole is still far greater than the sum of the parts.


Falstaff said...

Shoe-fiend: Thanks. If I wake up in the morning with a smile on my face it's because I know that I can actually get some caffeine in my system before I have to fully open my eyes.

Black Mamba: Huh? Next you'll be telling me you don't like the smell of gasoline.

Neela: Stop being such a vegetable and go check your mail.

JAP: Thanks. I think. I don't know about the writing for effect. More like I didn't take the time to edit this - so I may not have quite managed to capture what I really wanted to say. That's why some of this stuff doesn't ring as true as it should.

Heh Heh said...

"like smelling the grease on the railway tracks after the train has just passed"
i know *exactly* what you are referring to.. and i quite agree with you there.

Anonymous said...

gosh.. this sounds really inept... but how I agree! with the coffee, that bit about polished metal and gasoline. they sort of fill your consciousness. what do you stay to fresh distemper/ paint

Anonymous said...

Like your blog, keep up the good work.

expresso maker

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