I am an inveterate consumer of the black elixir that is coffee.

I like my coffee strong, maybe black. Lately, I’ve been taking my morning caffeine intake as a strong flat white, though there are days I’m tempted to go back to ordering a long black at my usual coffee shop instead. Mochas are also an option, when I’m feeling like I’m close to my caffeine limit for the day.

I’m not sure when I started drinking coffee. I do recall back in my senior year of high school, I was part of the school paper and our adviser usually had a pot of coffee brewing during lunch break – which I partook of, while either hanging out at the publications office or getting some work done (more the former than the latter, to be honest). Back then, I took it black with a lot of sugar.

One of the first things I did when I arrived in Sydney was grab a cup of coffee. I remember it quite clearly: it was a Sunday, almost lunch time. I was meeting someone who had the keys to what would be my home for the next 30 days, as I looked for an apartment. In the meantime, I’d duck into a coffee shop (which I learned only later was a chain) for a quick bite and a coffee.

I’m not very particular about my coffee. By that I mean that most coffee is good to me, but instant is an (almost) abomination – it just doesn’t do it for me. Drip coffee or better, I always say.

I bought a French press some time back, in Manila. I brought it to the office, and used it to prepare my afternoon post-lunch cup of coffee, sometimes cribbing grounds from an officemate who brought some. I have it with me here in Sydney, and for a couple of months I used it to prepare my morning cup.

However, because I’m a lazy bastard, I sort of stopped doing that. I figure that buying a cup on my way to work would be quicker, albeit more expensive – but I also figured that it’s at least worth paying for the convenience. I may rethink that strategy in the future.

Anyway, pretty conveniently, there was an anniversary marked recently – our org just passed its fifth birthday here in Sydney, and I have a commemorative keep cup to celebrate just that. Less waste I guess, and it is convenient to have your own mug/drink container at the office.

I’m not sure how to explain why I like coffee so much, that in Manila I’d even take it at midnight. There’s something about the psychoactive effects of caffeine that just clicks with me, as it is the greatest legal psychoactive drug in the world, so yay!

There was a brief period in my life though when I basically had to switch away from coffee, and that period sucked. Never again.

What about tea? Tea just doesn’t do it for me as a caffeine delivery mechanism. Don’t get me wrong: I do drink tea, and not just milk tea either: I’ve also used my French press as a teapot as well, and I like genmaicha and black tea. Floral teas are another abomination though – I feel like I’m drinking perfume with them. But tea just doesn’t give me the same oomph as a cup of coffee, and I suspect that’s just down to preference and habit.

If I do end up needing to quit my caffeine addiction though, I’ll need to figure out other ways to perk up. Tea? I’ll give it another shot.

Previously: OPM