Nov 12

Dear Readers,

As I reflect on the past several work weeks, I observe a rather startling trend in the amount of caffeine consumed during the early morning hours – those hours in which I attempt to awaken and pry myself from the strong gravitational pull of my bed*, — and the day of the week.

*It has been scientifically proven in a rather unscientific manner that the highest concentrations of gravity on earth are in one’s bed, no matter where the bed in relation to the earth and space. Scientists are still trying to uncover and reverse this concentration of gravity within the mattress infrastructure, so that one can literally float right out of bed in the morning with relative ease.

As a scientist,** I have used the scientific method to analyze this trend, and I find that I have been carefully concocting my caffeinated beverages in the morning to the exact specifications required by the following scientific formula:

Natural State of Awareness Upon Waking + Caffeine = Awake Employee

**Scientist: (noun) One who took at least one science class in college. Must also look good in a lab coat.

Using this fact-based formula, I observe that on Monday, having just experienced two days to recuperate from the previous work week, I can create a drip coffee with 99% decaffeinated beans, and 1% caffeinated beans – this negligible addition of caffeine intended only to offset the withdrawal headache and generally unpleasant demeanor provoked by a purely caffeine-free day. I scoff at those weaker than myself who are drinking a fully caffeinated cup and pride myself on my lack of dependence on artificial means to make it through the day.

On Tuesday morning, it is unreasonable to use Monday’s exact proportions in my drip, as it has been scientifically proven*** that due to the position of the earth relative to, like, other stuff in space, Tuesdays are actually much longer than Mondays, creating the illusion of a twelve-hour work day, even if one still puts in a standard 8 – 9 hour day. Thus Tuesday necessitates a more modest ratio of decaffeinated to caffeinated, perhaps 30%/70%, (plus or minus 20% and a shot of espresso).

***Controlled studies have not yet been replicated by anyone but Troi.

Wednesday dictates a 50/50 split between the two types of beans, not due to any level of dependence on caffeine by the drinker, but due instead to the scientific formula:

Mid-Week Exhaustion [approaching maximum] + Natural State of Awareness [approaching zero] + Caffeine = Awake Employee

Come Thursday I find a refreshing absence of pretense as I fully acknowledge the important role of caffeine in one’s daily life, buoyed also by online journals, articles and blog posts touting its health benefits as part of a healthy diet and exercise program to enhance mood, endurance, and longevity. Noting that since I neither diet nor exercise I need a higher proportion of caffeine to enhance my own mood, endurance, and longevity, I grind 20% decaffeinated and 80% caffeinated beans accordingly. I notice I’m walking and talking faster at work, and nobody including myself can actually understand what I’m saying at this heightened level of functioning (think the strength and stamina of the Hulk except provoked by caffeine, not anger), but I’m pretty sure it’s a new and improved me.

When I wake on Friday morning, I look with disdain on the decaffeinated beans in my cupboard – really, who buys that stuff? How did it end up in my house? – yet as a scientist I know the dangers of excess and carefully proportion only 99% caffeinated and 1% decaf (a single bean) into my drip, ensuring that I attain this crazy, higher-level state of being (I am invincible), without appearing any crazier than my friends already expect me to be (no hostile takeovers of the local coffee shop today!). I’m so productive that I actually complete all of my work only seconds after arriving at the job site. Or I could were my workload not to include a full day of working with students.

Having justified by science this upward trend of caffeine consumption during the progression of my work week, I’m curious if my huge fan base (is anybody reading this, by the way?) has identified a similar pattern in their own lives. Please relate your own experiences. (If they’re different than mine, they’re probably wrong.)

–Troi out