Coffee: the agony and the ecstasy

The blog has fallen silent over the past week. To explain why, I have to take you back ten years or more.

It all started when my sister bought me a book called Coffee Basics: A Quick and Easy Guide. The transition from hard-core addict to Coffee geek was easy, and I began visiting my local coffee roastery, sipping regional cups with discrimination, and experimenting with every imaginable brewing method at home.

Berries from the Tree of Life ready for processing.
Berries from the Tree of Life ready for processing.

Then I discovered SweetMarias.com. The world of home coffee roasting opened before me, and before long I was roasting my own coffee in an old popcorn popper. When the popper broke, Christmas came along and I was the proud owner of a Fresh Roast SR500. Ah, the sweet grassy smell of roasting coffee beans! Coffee geekery yielded to obsession.

And so it remains to this day, the depth of the obsession varying with the depth of my pockets. Every evening, I roast my own coffee, and every morning I brew my own roast.

About a week ago, I began having strange, intense headaches. Now strange, intense headaches are a near-daily hobby of mine, but these strange, intense headaches were new, alarming, and soul-crushing. More strangely still, my wife developed similar headaches at the same time. Is it an allergy? Is it family stress? Is it the visitation of God’s wrath? Why are our kids practically orphans?!

Now you, oh reader, smiling over this blog as you sip your morning latte, have already divined the truth of the matter. The unfair thing about soul-crushing headaches is that they leave their victims unable to reason about the true cause of the implosion in their heads.

But eventually, Jacinta discovered the bag of decaff from which I had been roasting our coffee all week.

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Author: Dr. Holmes

Dr. Jeremy Holmes teaches Theology at Wyoming Catholic College. He lives in Wyoming with his wife, Jacinta, and their eight children.

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