Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Why Is It So Difficult To Get A Cup Of Decaffeinated Coffee In The Afternoon?

I rarely drink caffeinated coffee, and I never drink coffee with caffeine in the afternoon (unless my goal is to stay awake until dawn). 
Many years ago, during a business lunch at a chilly restaurant, I ordered a cup of decaffeinated coffee.  One of my colleagues shook his head and asked, “What’s the point of decaffeinated coffee?”  He really could not fathom why a sane human being would voluntarily drink decaffeinated coffee.  I explained, very slowly, “Because I like the taste of coffee but do not want the caffeine.” 
Coffee is the perfect treat: warm, satisfying, and calorie free.  Yes, I drink my coffee with a splash of milk, but hey, a woman needs her calcium. 
Sometimes, I stop at Starbucks in the afternoon.  I just want a grande decaffeinated coffee because I need to consume something and coffee is better than a Snickers bar (by better, I mean the cup of coffee has fewer calories.  If I was naturally skinny, I would of course choose the Snickers bar).  When I order my beverage, the barrista looks at me with equal parts scorn and horror and says something like, “We stop brewing decaffeinated coffee at 2 p.m.  Would you like a decaf Americano?”  No, actually, I do not want a decaf Americano, thank you very much; if I wanted a decaf Americano, that’s what I would have ordered in the first place.
The unavailability of decaffeinated coffee in the afternoon makes no sense to me.  Is everyone really drinking caffeinated coffee at 4 p.m.?  Doesn’t anyone want to enjoy the flavor of coffee and still be able to fall asleep before midnight?  Am I the only person in America who orders a decaffeinated coffee in the afternoon?
Fortunately, there is Peet’s. Good, reliable Peet’s with its delicious and strong coffee.  I can walk into my local Peet’s at any hour of the day and order a cup of decaffeinated coffee.  Nobody judges me, nobody questions my sanity.   Thank you, Peet’s, for accepting me just the way I am.   

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