I have talked about my caffeine problems many times on this site. Two years ago, I decided that I was going to cut out all caffeine in my life. This was huge because I am massively addicted to coffee. Not just the caffeine, but also the taste. I could drink coffee all day and night, and in my most insane moments, I would. I drank it so much at some points that it no longer had any impact on my state of alertness – I would drink a cup and go to bed 10 minutes later with no ill effects. Then I started thinking that maybe that was a bad thing, and I went cold-turkey. I switched over to decaf, and while that was healthier, it didn’t taste as good. I slowly stopped drinking coffee all together. Around that time, my doctor told me to cut out all caffeine in my diet. Done and done. For several months, I was living the golden life, the caffeine free diet. Then, I moved to New York.

Not only did I move to New York, but I moved to New York in the winter. It was cold out, and I was trying to adjust to the three hour time difference. At first, I drank hot chocolate. Then, one fateful morning, I dragged myself into the kitchen at work only to discover there were no hot chocolate packets. I moaned to whoever was nearby about the lack of warm chocolatey goodness, and whoever it was replied,


“There are a bunch of mocha packets right here.”
Mocha…chocolatey goodness…in coffee form. I would only have one packet. I hadn’t had coffee in so long, one cup would be fine. So I had it. It warmed me to my very soul, and soon I noticed I was typing with renewed vigor. The next morning, there was still no hot chocolate. No matter! There were still plenty of mocha packets. The day after that, I didn’t even bother to look for hot chocolate, going straight for the mocha. And so it began…my renewed caffeine addiction.

I soon realized I was back on the juice, and this time it had a hold of me good. I started getting the shakes when I didn’t have it. I would dream of that moment in the morning when I would grind fresh coffee beans. To paraphrase the great Frank the Tank, it tasted so good when it hit my lips. I struggled with my addiction, trying to get it back under control. I tried putting the coffee grinder up and out of the way, thinking that my laziness would trump my need for speed; it did not. I tried giving away my coffee beans; my aunt would send me more. I tried switching to Chai Tea; I started craving the tea in addition to my coffee cravings. I finally threw in the towel, deciding when the time was right I would finally be able to give up caffeine. Someday, the willpower would come, just like when you finally don’t cut your growing-out bangs. Today, I am happy to report, is the day my body finally said, “enough.”

The day didn’t start that way, though. Since I started going to the gym before work, I haven’t been drinking coffee until later in the morning, once I arrive at the office. I didn’t go to the gym this morning, however; I filled that void with a sweet cup of coffee. When I got to the office, I made myself a nice cup of cappuccino on our new machine. I came out of a meeting and made myself a double cappuccino. I walked down the hall of my office, and I started thinking about how awesome it would be if I did a baseball-style slide right there. I stopped, calculated the hallway’s distance and how much speed I would be able to build up. I considered my jeans and lack of socks. I contemplated a thigh slide so I would slide farther. And then, I realized that I was TOTALLY HIGH ON CAFFEINE. Who thinks about doing a baseball slide down the hallway of their office at 11:30 on a Tuesday morning? I mean, who seriously, earnestly thinks about it, all the way down to doing head math? I knew I’d lost it then. Tomorrow, no caffeine.