Posts Tagged Coffee
I’ve loved Dunkin’ Donuts all my life, even though they’re few and far between in California. Every summer, I’d visit my family in the northeast and get really excited about trips to DD, a novelty for west coast me. When I asked my dad why my home state hadn’t really embraced DD, he said, “People are a little more health conscious where you come from.” Hence, I fled as soon as I could! Now that I live in New York, I go to Dunkin’ Donuts all the time, and I’m right where I belong.
But when I heard yesterday that Starbucks locations all over the city would be closing in preparation of Hurricane Sandy, I became worried that Dunkin’ would do the same. Because I’m a poor planner, I didn’t think to replace my Keurig coffee maker when it molded a few months ago, so I’ve been without a coffee pot for a long time. That means no coffee unless I venture out into the streets of New York. I can’t start my day without any caffeine, so I called my neighborhood Dunkin’ this morning and found out that they were operating normally. I immediately threw a hoodie over my flannel pajama top, changed my clothes, and dashed out the door. There were a lot of people out, and the winds weren’t any worse than they’d been yesterday.
Dunkin’ had a decent amount of customers as well. Many of us are willing to risk our lives to get our morning coffee fix. I know I am.
Anyway, the company slogan “American runs on Dunkin’” has taken on a whole new meaning for me. I gave the employees a massive tip, and if you happen to pay them a visit today, you should do the same. DD for life!
I am basically reunited with all my clothes, belongings, and material items.
Worry not if that sentence makes little sense to you. Many of you are aware that I relocated from DC to NYC in October, but you probably don’t know that I shipped about 65 percent of my things to my uncle’s house in upstate New York as soon as I started the moving process. I’m not totally sure why I sent the majority of my stuff to live in his basement for four months, but I wanted as little in the way as possible for my move, and we all know what a pain it is to be governed by our belongings.
At first, I was fine without my bathrobe, Snuggie, workout gear, summer attire, and business casual wardrobe. But then the weather started warming up and reminded me that spring isn’t so far away, so I met up with my uncle this weekend to retrieve my boxes. We had a nice visit at his New York home, where my cousin, aunt, and I watched humiliating footage of me dancing to the “Hunchback of Notre Dame” soundtrack with my cousins in 1996. The clip embarrassed me, and my uncle laughed and said, “I knew you and the girls would look back on this fifteen years later and cringe.” Indeed we did. I wasn’t shameful of my inability to dance or move with even an ounce of grace at age seven, but of my tall bird-like stature, which I still have today. Even though my pediatrician predicted I’d barely reach five feet, I’m 5’8 and actually quite displeased about my height, which I find very limiting. I chalk it up to all the milk my dad made me drink as a kid. I was never supposed to be tall, yet I am thanks to my dairy consumption. Hopefully it’ll help protect against Osteoporosis, which runs in my family.
Anyway, the video goes to show I’ve always been a lanky lady, so unless I develop some very unhealthy coffee drinking habits, I’m not going to shrink anytime soon. Hopefully I won’t grow any taller, though, as I already feel like a towering spider in heels and don’t want to freak people out more than I already do.
After the movie, I collected my boxes and brought them back to Brooklyn. It’s funny how little you actually need something when it’s out of sight. I’d forgotten about all the towels, shoes, and exercise clothes I’d stashed away. It’s nice to have my favorite articles of clothing and dishes again, even though my tiny room only feels smaller and looks messier as a result of its increase in content. Though I’ll undoubtedly be tempted to shop in the near future, I simply have no room for another t-shirt or sweater, so talk some sense into me if I mention wanting to pay a visit to Anthropologie or Banana Republic. Besides the fact that those shops are overpriced, I am lacking in storage space. I also only have 1/3 of a closet, which I share with my roommate. It really is time to move, huh?
But even with the addition of my Keurig coffee pot, my kitchen isn’t cluttered. I do, however, worry it’s unusable. Before I mailed the Keurig to my uncle, I wiped it down thoroughly and made sure the filter didn’t contain a single drop of water. Well, as I found out today, there must have been water somewhere in the contraption, as my coffee maker had droplets of foul smelling brown liquid all over it. I’m sure the Keurig is fine to use, but it’s been soaking up that visceral stuff for months, so what do I do? Though my mom paid pretty penny for that coffee maker, which she surprised me with in September, she’s such a worrier that she’d probably advise me against utilizing it.
But what is your honest opinion? If I use it, will I contract some sort of awful illness or drop dead, or will I be just fine? I mean, it smells fine for the most part, so I’d assume it’s in good enough condition to brew…Coffee savants, enlighten me.
I’ve had coffee every day for the past year and a half, but somehow forgot to drink my daily caffeine intake until 4:30 p.m. That explains the pounding headache that still hasn’t gone away. When I don’t sip my cup of joe early enough in the day, I’m past the point of no return and the migraine sits with me for hours on end. Moral of the story? I’m dependent on coffee, for better or worse. It’s a semi-healthy addiction though, as coffee apparently lowers depression risk in women! Talk about a win win.
The other day, I saw a pair of newlyweds posing for photographs in the middle of a DuPont Circle island crosswalk! They were in the heart of a traffic circle, the one spot in the world where courtesy picture rules don’t apply. This isn’t Disneyland. People aren’t going to stop dead in their tracks in front of impatient, inattentive cab drivers just so you can have a peculiar wedding photo to stick above the family fireplace.
Maybe they met at that exact spot and wanted a snapshot beside it, but there’s a time and place for sentimental photographs. That wasn’t one of them.
Day by day, I’m in denial that summer ended two months ago. Last night, I ventured out to Adam’s Morgan in my favorite lime green skirt from Italy. Though I had a fun evening with friends, it was clear the moment I stepped outdoors and my teeth began chattering that I should have opted for warmer going-out clothing.
Last year, D.C. fall season discouraged me from wearing shorts, skirts, and dresses. I left the apartment today in one of my favorite Anthropologie skirts only to scramble back inside as soon as I felt a drop of rain and gust of wind. I slipped into my favorite corduroy Goddesswear pants and rushed outside more prepared, but felt like a slob.
This year, I won’t let the chilly weather dictate my outfit choices, even though I’m sad that my sundresses and I are going on a eight month break. Former Daily Caller interns Nikki and Katie have been instrumental in getting me to dress to impress, so today I took their advice during my trip to Macy’s.
Katie, a strong believer in the phrase, “beauty hurts,” is a bigtime high heels proponent and would be happy to hear I purchased these today:
Of course, I’ve helped Katie out with her style as well, so I’m not completely useless when it comes to clothing. After seeing “Harry Potter” with me in Georgetown one afternoon, Katie complained that her wedges had created numerous blisters and cuts on her feet. She got to the point where walking became impossible, so I told her to stroll through the city barefoot. People do it frequently in the bay area, so she should feel free to do the same over here on occasion. Katie quipped that I’m too Californian for my own good, but I know the difference between a worthwhile sacrifice and unnecessary pain. We keep each other in check.
On my quest for adorable winter/fall apparel, I consulted Nikki Grey, my sunny, street-smart Nevada buddy who can also be trusted to tell the truth and don swanky business attire. She advised me to avoid grays and blacks because they wash me out, so I’m sticking with brown articles of clothing. The color may not be as professional or grown-up, but you have to understand the canvas with which you work. I’m fair-skinned and red-headed, so I have to factor all that into my selections.
Monique and I want to see that new movie, “50/50,” which follows a young man (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who has cancer. Seth Rogen co-stars alongside Gordon-Levitt as the clueless friend who is “burdened” with dealing with a sick friend. I think we’ll watch the film for sure, but I can’t wrap my head around the idea of a “comedy” about cancer. Sure you have to make light of the sickness to get through the inevitable unbearable days, but there’s absolutely nothing to laugh about when someone loses their mind to a brutal, life-sucking illness.
Also, why does Rogen keep doing this? In 2009, he appeared in “Funny People,” which tells the story of a middle-aged guy (Adam Sandler) coming to terms with leukemia. “Funny People” and “50/50″ are half comedy, half drama, but Rogen should be ashamed about using his comedian status to joke about something that destroys millions of lives every year. This isn’t “Knocked Up,” which is about a deadbeat slacker dude who impregnates a successful female television reporter. I’m tired of the insensitive themes of his movies. Unexpected pregnancies aren’t funny either, especially since the woman in “Knocked Up” wants a more responsible father figure for her baby. Granted, Rogen’s character matures, but why should two people have to learn to fall in love with each other? That sort of thing cannot be forced. If your boyfriend or girlfriend has to grow on you from day one, you’re setting yourself up for an awful relationship.
As someone who has lost an immediate family member to cancer, I understand that you need to find humor in the sea of chaos and tragedy to come out okay. When the radiation treatment started messing with my dad’s mind in 2006, he made nonsensical statements and accusations once a week. He would get confused and disoriented, say the nurses were mishandling with his medicine, and even get upset with me for pleading with him to take his pills.
“Why are you being so hard on me, Laura?” he’d say. “When did you turn into one of them?”
By “them,” he meant our family members.
After two months, he picked up on the fact that the chemotherapy had changed his personality and caused him to say unusual things. Every once in a while, he’d tap me on the shoulder and ask a bizarre question.
“Who am I?” he’d say, his eyes darting around the room in horror.
“You’re Paul from New Jersey,” I informed him.
“No, that’s not right. I’m Justin Timberlake!”
At that point, he was aware that he’d lost himself somewhere along the line, and the only way to cope was through jabs. I’m sure “50/50″ carries a similar message, and I most definitely respect that. Unlike my dad, the main character becomes ill at a young age. My father was lucky enough to get diagnosed with cancer at 56, long after he’d had children, gotten married, traveled the world, and established a career. He had no qualms about dying, but a 27-year-old cancer victim has so much more living to do. I can’t imagine what Gordon-Levitt’s character has to chuckle about.
Of course, I cannot judge “50/50″ until I view it, so if you have seen it, please share your thoughts on the matter with me in the comments section. I’m eager to hear what audience members have to say about the flick.
Yesterday’s yoga session was great and possibly inspiring enough for me to purchase a monthly pass. It’d be a bit of a splurge, but a worthwhile one at that.
A pre-natal yoga course took place before my yoga-on-the-go class, so I ran into a bunch of pregnant women in the studio. One of the ladies explained that she’d gone on a baking binge, and thankfully she was nice enough to bring some cupcakes to yoga. Hooray for red velvet snacks!
After class, I approached the instructor and said I felt physically off-balance. I have poor center of gravity and sometimes put more weight on the left side of my body than on that of the right. The teacher explained this could result from not having a balance in my emotional, personal, and work lives. She sure has that right!
Anyway, she demonstrated some positions I could work on to fix this problem and help me achieve a stronger balance all around. It will be my new goal to stand on one foot while the other leg flies up in the air. I’m sure I will be able to do it in time.
A while back, I vowed to curb my coffee intake. I broke this promise and gave in to tasty, routine temptations. Having just read an awesome D.C. yogi’s blog entry on breaking up with coffee, I might resurrect this desire and find a way to demote caffeine in my existence.
Time and time again, I’ve attempted to substitute java for tea, but the latter really isn’t my “cup of tea” (sorry for the cheesy pun!). Every time I consume tea, I feel nauseous. This has been a problem since college, but back then, I thought I just couldn’t stomach the hot fluid beneath scorching southern Arizona sunshine. I can’t drink it in moderately warm D.C., either.
Yesterday, I had some Earl Grey tea at Starbucks and almost immediately thought I was going to hurl. Hopefully I can develop some sort of tolerance for it soon enough. This Friday, I’m getting bubble tea with my Georgetown friend Adam in his lovely college town, so fingers crossed I don’t publicly embarrass myself again!
Today, I read an interesting “Good Men Project” article written by a high-achieving female lawyer who says she loves dating her blue collar boyfriend. While I agree it’s rude to shoot someone down for being an “average joe”, I don’t think I’d be happy with someone uneducated. That might make me a snob, but school is important to me. Not too long ago, I met a country lad who had fairly good manners but came across as condescending towards scholarly folks. Every time I said something, he raised his eyebrows and exuded a “holier than thou” attitude that really rubbed me the wrong way by the end of the afternoon, when he said he wanted to hang out with me. I opted out because he berated working professionals for not doing enough outdoorsy activities. He also had a very limited idea of what’s categorized as a hobby. In his eyes, nothing aside from hunting, shooting, hiking, mountain biking, paint-balling, and other manly-man activities passed his productivity test. I quickly told him I found it abominable that his friends murdered animals (lions, tigers, elk, and deer!) for leisure. He went on to slam east coast people for residing in a place too cold for outdoor fun, but not everyone can play outside all day. He insulted me for preferring city living (houses/apartments close together) to isolated 20-acre land properties, reading and writing instead of owning firearms, and doing gymnastics and yoga rather than softball or some other highly athletic sport. I immediately told myself that he just didn’t understand my lifestyle because he hadn’t gone to college. Whether or not I’m right, we clearly weren’t a good fit.
Now, this isn’t to say nature boys aren’t educated. I used to date an Eagle Scout camper who attended the Air Force Academy, which is one of the finest higher educational institutions in the country. He would rather go mountain biking than sit in a classroom, but he didn’t deny the relevance of academia.
The bottom line is that it’s not easy to relate to someone of different values and interests. To each his own, and I applaud anyone who finds love regardless of circumstances and backgrounds, but you must share some sort of common ground with your romantic partner.
As one of my Twitter followers put it, you can’t always judge a book by its cover. Allie and Noah are resplendent in love in “The Notebook” despite the fact that she attends Sarah Lawrence College and he’s all about manual labor.
In my book, nerd love always prevails. Hence, I sort of prefer the relationship in “Adventureland” that follows Oberlin College graduate James and NYU student Em’s nerd romance:
At the beginning of this week, I had an absurd idea. For health purposes, I considered slashing coffee from my diet. I chug a minimum of 2.5 cups a day, and this consumption might be too hard on my body. I couldn’t completely cut coffee, especially since I adore everything about coffee shops, but I could certainly benefit from opting for tea on most days. Tea has soothing effects, but it also tastes like boiled toilet water.
So, the whole “let’s be healthier” challenge might be too great for me to tackle. Oh well.
In my last post, I said I’d planned an April trip to Tucson. I scheduled my flight on a whim, and for a day, I felt this might have been an irresponsible financial decision on my part. Then I got a call from my close Tucson friend Dyanna, whose best childhood friend had just been killed. She’s crushed and devastated that one of her closest lifelong buddies is gone forever, and I know the tragedy will take a while for her to process. Anyway, we both agreed that it’s great I booked a Tucson flight for next month, as she’s going to need lots of moral support and advice. She’s also going to need me around, and I will do my best to talk her through it.
Yesterday, I caught up with another best college friend, Tracey, who lives in the D.C. area. Believe it or not, she’s actually part of the reason I moved out here.
Tracey and I lived in the dorms together as college freshmen, but we didn’t get to know each other until a Kappa Alpha party sophomore year. Late that night, all of our mutual friends wanted to eat at Nico’s Taco Shop, but we wanted to stay at the fraternity house, so Tracey and I hung out on the front porch while the others indulged in southern Arizona Mexican cuisine. Tracey and I figured out we had a lot in common and were pretty much inseparable from that point on. The same thing happened junior year, but unfortunately Tracey graduated early and left me to live out my senior year without her. Luckily, we road tripped together from Arizona to D.C. in 2009, and I’ll never forget the memories from that adventure.
Anyway, she went back to D.C. every summer during college because she grew up in northern Virginia. Oddly enough, I received an opportunity to do a journalism internship in D.C. in summer 2008, and that experience led me to ultimately move back there for good.
To my luck, Tracey still lives here, and no matter how much time we go without seeing each other, nothing changes.
For example, when she picked me up at the metro stop yesterday, I knew she was going to laugh at my scarf and jacket. As soon as I opened her car door, she threw up her hands in disbelief.
“It’s 65 degrees out, Laura, this is not Antarctica! Look warmer!”
I missed our long-winded conversations, and I feel luckier than ever to have her around. I met her new roommate and his friends, and they were all really chill. It’s kind of a relief to meet people who don’t by default ask me what I do for a living. After a while, it’s annoying to feel interviewed/interrogated, but I’m not arguing that I’m above this. As I’ve said thousands of times, I hate small talk, so I was thankful that these people had no interest in pretending like they cared about what I do career-wise. There’s nothing I love more than writing and journalism, but I’d rather talk about what’s on my mind and bothering me.
Tracey and I cooked some risotto, which I absolutely love. As much as I adore my Irish heritage, a part of me wishes I could be Italian, as the food is Heavenly.
I also hung out with Tracey’s cat, Coffee (she has two felines: Starbucks and Coffee), and I’m still in disbelief that a kitty could be friendly. Having grown up with a feral cat who died from too many heart palpitations, I’ve always believed cats are mean, nervous, hot-headed, and boring. Coffee was fun and sweet, although he did arbitrarily bite my fingers every now and then. My old cat used to do that. One moment she’d be purring and the next she’d grab your arm and scratch you.
My roommate sort of wants to get a cat, and while I’m sure I’d love the company, I prefer dogs. If I had it my way, I’d have my pup Roxy out here in D.C., but she’s far too old to adapt to such a drastic change. I’ll be seeing her in a few weeks, so hopefully she never leaves me side while I’m home.
The sun sets later and later every evening. You know what that means. Summer is near. Hallelujah! As the new season approaches, I can’t help but marvel at the fact that I’ve been in D.C. for more than seven months. The Daily Caller changed my life and I count my blessings every day, even during hectic spurts. I’m lucky to be able to write what I want, manage an incredible batch of fabulous and hilarious interns, work with creative people, and take vacation time when I’m in need of an escape out west.
Here are some things I’ve learned after living in D.C. for seven months:
1. Shopping can be fun. I’ve never been one of those girls who enjoys going to the mall or buying new things, although I did love indulging in sundress purchases while residing in Tucson. After moving out to D.C., I realized that shopping could be a decent and inexpensive experience. I fell in love with H&M, which has reasonably priced attire, style, and good quality. When living on the east coast, you have to dress well and swaddle yourself in warm clothing, so hopefully I can man up sooner than later and be more trendy.
2. The month of March is a tease. Just when you think the horrendous winter has ended, you step outside to wind-chill, hail, and thunderstorms. Don’t lock up your long fluffy coats yet, you have another month and a half to go before safely donning t-shirts and shorts.
3. When winter hits, it dictates everything. For four solid months, I bundled up in gloves, a jacket, scarf, sweater, hat, long pants, boots, and tights every day before heading to the office. I was leaving my house before 5 a.m., which is basically the coldest time of day, so I had to take extra measures to keep warm. I huddled up in my jacket during the work day, causing many to joke that I looked like an Eskimo. My skin saw no sunlight for at least five months, so I resorted to my sun lamp to curb the effects of Seasonal Affect Disorder (SAD).
4. D.C. residents can’t handle snow. Enough said.
5. Wind is worse than snow and rain combined. When walking in windy conditions, my face became so numb it was as if I’d just been to the dentist.
6. People here are more laid-back than you’d think. Before I came to D.C., my friends warned that east coast people are rude, hostile, and perpetually angry at life. I wouldn’t say this is accurate. During crowded metro days, everyone is kind, and no one screams or throws a fit when some dim-witted asshole stands on the left side of the escalator (in D.C., this is a huge no-no). People are much friendlier than I expected.
7. Georgetown is awesome. I’d love to live there and never, ever leave the area.
8. People stay informed. Even if they don’t care about the news, chances are, D.C. folks know whats going on in the world.
9. There are plenty of cool hotspots outside D.C. Northern Virginia and Bethesda, Md., are just as exciting for twenty-somethings as downtown D.C. In fact, I prefer northern Virginia nightlife.
10. Adam’s Morgan is a blast, though. I praise the bar Madam’s Organ for selling select discounted drinks to redheads.