Saturday, 11 July 2015

Confessions of a caffeine-holic

I could murder a coffee. Scrub that. I could commit genocide for a double macchiato. But I'm not allowed. I'm a caffeine-holic. And I currently have none in my system. I intend that to always be the case. 

Don't get me wrong: writing about it makes me feel like caffeine's raging through me. But don't make me drink coffee. You wouldn't like me when I'm on coffee. 

There. I feel better now. I mean I still desperately and urgently want a cappucino right now, as the first thick, brown liquid makes its way up the side of the styrofoam cup. But I'm calmer. 

I started realising I had a problem about 20 years ago. Although, thinking about it, I've had this problem since caffeine first entered my life, or to put it more directly, my blood stream. Caffeine makes me jittery. I mean; it makes me deliriously happy for 20 minutes and then jittery. And then I turn into an over-the-top blabbermouth. 

It gets worse. If I was to have a single shot at 08:00am, I'd still be awake at 04:00am the next day. It's the same with decaf and chocolate. I used to have the odd bit of chocolate and then, in March this year, I added that to the list of banned substances that aren't allowed in my system. This moves things on a bit from when hot chocolate was my 'caffeine-free' choice. I had an item on BBC London 94.9fm about this, when I worked there in 2000.

A strange thing happened in about May, two months after I kicked chocolate. I had a surge, as if I'd had a few espressos. It must have been me rejecting the remnants. I felt like Dr Who regenerating. 

So I can't go back. Ever. But now I want to. I won't. 

I have this weird conversation with people. They say: "Oh go on, have a small coffee." I say: "Can you imagine me on coffee?" They reply, knowing that I'm quite hyper anyway, by saying: "Oh, yes. I see now." They achieve a vision of clarity. And then skip off to Starbucks to drink something that doesn't affect them. Lucky, lucky...people.

I admit I have fantasized about the end of the world. Not because I want it to end. I love the world. No. It's because I'd run riot. Not in the streets, but in a coffee shop, if I was lucky enough to be there when the 20 minute warning came in. I don't know how to make a machiatto - perhaps I should learn just to be ready for this eventuality. But I would have time to dive behind the counter, as the baristas flee in terror, make a coffee, and relish the experience. That would last 20 minutes and I wouldn't have those nasty side-effects, as we're blown to kingdom come. 

But, in the real world, I often go into the kitchen and sniff coffee. I do it without thinking about it. And then I think about it. And I will always have this in my life. But no more caffeine. God I miss it. But no more. I miss it.  

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