I never really drank coffee in high school–when if first became chic to do so–because I always thought, “When I’m older, I’ll need this more.” I didn’t want to waste the tolerance to soothe my tired teenage ennui. (I was much more forward-thinking than I am now, sadly. Maybe I should use that same mindset to start planning for retirement or something, but I know I won’t).
Well, I’m older now, and I do need this.
Since I’m a late bloomer, I’ve become acutely aware of what coffee does to my adult body. I get wicked jitters. My hand shakes like a junkie looking for a fix. I remember this happening to me when I had my first black coffee in college (I was honest when I said I was a late bloomer). Instead of cramming for my final, I ended up jumping on the bed to music. A friend came in my room, and I darted to the corner like a frightened cat and cowered. She left quickly. True story.
And if you talk to me when I’m heavily caffeinated, I switch topics as quickly as a philosophizing crackhead. I have seen coworkers slink away in fear, eyes widened so they can keep an eye on my craziness as they back toward the door. I now start out most big conversations with a disclaimer: “Hey, coworker X. Yeah, I’m fine. I’ve had a lot of coffee, though.”
And, of course, everything races. One day at work, I was chatting with a friend after I had two cups of coffee (it must have been a brutal night). And I said, “Oh god. My heart is beating so fast. Am I dying? Is this death?” And she laughed her cold internet laugh and said “You get used to that.”
I am used to it, and I come to expect it now. Except this morning, for whatever reason. My body is being dumb and not responding to this sweet bean water. Have you seen that episode of Futurama where Fry drinks 100 cups of coffee and the world seems to slow down around him? Todoay is like that for me, except my body is moving slowly too. My mind is bouncing around like a child with ADHD, but my limbs are like “rrraaaghhhhh” (that’s a zombie noise).
The caffeine symptom that I didn’t expect was the feeling of intoxication. It’s like the first step of drunkness. My inhibitions are lifted. I’ll joke with my boss. I’ll finally send that email that has been sitting in my draft box for days. I’m just an all-around better, more confident person. Perhaps the key to confidence is, in fact, hyper-awareness.
I muse on all of this, of course, because I am heavily caffeinated this morning. Very heavily. I’m going to use that as an excuse for why this post has little cohesiveness and why I’m not to be bothered thinking of a proper conclusion.