Rachel, Stacie, Carrie Beth...I can already see you guys clicking on this one : )
Aside: Carrie Beth and Stacie, I was this close to adding our Whole Foods coffee pictures, but wasn't sure it would be entirely appropriate!
By: Marshall Allen
You can tell a lot about a person by his relationship with coffee. In fact, scientists at Kutztown State University are currently spending millions of grant dollars on psychological and sociological studies orbiting around this socially consumed beverage.
Some of their preliminary results have been astounding and are already changing the way the way roommates, boyfriends and girlfriends, and families interact. Relationships are being saved! The following findings are being used in pre-marriage counseling and, for the first time, roomies are saying to one another "I understand you ... I feel like you know me" and "No wonder you're such a freak ..."
Whether or not you're a coffee drinker, you certainly interact with the species on a daily basis. And while the findings are preliminary, they are chilling in their accuracy. Consider, the following Coffee Personality Types (CPT):
The Coffee Addict (a.k.a. The "User")
Psychologists describe the User's relationship with coffee as codependent. Like a bad dating relationship, the User will disparage her significant other behind its back — only to run to it in a moment of shameful desperation ... that occurs dozens of times daily. And for this, the User hates herself — but could you please get her a refill?
An addict will guzzle hot coffee like it's Gator-Aide — her esophagus a tube of seared scar tissue. Her only concern is to get the brew down the pipe ASAP. Beware grinding beans around this junkie — before you can even break out a filter she'll snort the fine grind.
A coffee addict is a reprehensible being. She may put up a snobbish show — pretending to have a discriminate palette by complaining about the taste of coffee. But the truth is it doesn't matter the swill that is served, she needs her fix. The Addict measures her consumption by the quart and won't let a mug go cold, or dry.
You Might Be an Addict If ...
- You have ever stolen to support your habit.
- You stagger from the bed to the coffee pot every morning.
- You say that caffeine "has no effect on you" yet you can't live without it (they say denial is a sure sign).
- You buy your coffee from 7-11 in a Double Gulp.
The Coffee Snob
The Coffee Snob knows the traditional Mr. Coffee electric drip coffee maker is an insult to his sensibilities. He's got a collection of filters, vacuum pots and French presses that make his kitchen look like a chemistry lab. When a Snob brews coffee it's an art form — a beautiful ballet. His routine is much like Tai Chi except without the slo-mo kicking: he gingerly wipes out his grinder with a cheese cloth, tucks in the beans, grinds them to perfection, and precisely measures two tablespoons per 6 ounces of water.
The Coffee Snob is driven by compulsion: the pursuit of "the perfect cup of coffee." He'll exfoliate his mug with a Loofta sponge before drinking each cup, and inhale the essence of the concoction like it's a fine wine. For the Snob, coffee is a spiritual experience.
Go out for coffee with a Snob and he'll inevitably embarrass you. He'll ask the ignorant and apathetic waiter when the beans were roasted, how they were stored, the plantation where they were grown and the name of third-world farmer who picked them. The Snob wonders why people raise their brows at him.
Coffee Snobs tend to cluster, discoursing on the fineness of grind, roasting techniques and brewing methods. Within their tribe, they play games of one-upsmanship, offering tidbits of coffee trivia and instinctively establishing a hierarchy of coffee knowledge. Coffee Snobs think that the right to fine coffee ranks among world peace and feeding the hungry in importance, and generally take themselves way too seriously.
You might be a coffee snob if:
- You ask for a taste before buying your coffee, then send it back because it's not to your liking.
- You've ever roasted your own beans.
- You've ever checked out a coffee book from the library (extra points for purchasing online).
- You refuse to drink "cafeteria" coffee, and have petitioned your student government to fight for the student body's right to gourmet coffee.
- You bring your own coffee on vacations and buy your host a "proper French press" when visiting.
Ways to deeply offend the Coffee Snob culture:
- Offer them flavored coffees.
- Heap Sweet-n-Low and non-dairy creamer into a cup the Snob has made you.
- Drink that last cup from the Mr. Coffee carafe that's been sitting on the burner for over an hour and say "Good to the last drop."
- Tell 'em you like it weak.
The Binge Drinker
Most common on college campuses, the binge drinker makes up for his coffee abstention throughout the semester by drinking java by the barrel during midterms and finals. All night cram sessions are like a rite of passage for the binge drinker, and coffee is part of the ritual — as if getting the caffeine quakes at 4 a.m. helps retain information.
Binge drinkers consume out of obligation for the age-old study night tradition, regardless of the flavor. It isn't unusual for a binger to guzzle three or four pots of coffee during a night. Quantity of consumption is spoken of as a badge of honor when telling post all-nighter war-stories. Bingers will unconsciously compete with one another about who had the most intense study session — and pots of coffee are a litmus test accepted by the subculture.
You Might Be a Binge Drinker If ...
- Coincidentally, your coffee pot holds the same volume of liquid as your bladder (to see how the scientists at KSU verified this, please check their research notes).
- Your all-night study sessions must take place at any "bottomless cup" type of diner (Denny's, Village Inn, IHOP, Waffle House).
- When offered a social cup of coffee you ask, "What's the point?"
The ROTC (a.k.a. Military Coffee Drinker)
Researchers have found that military chemists don't brew coffee for a soldier's enjoyment as he reads the morning paper — it's War Coffee. Army coffee can be used to treat Jungle Rot and is also effective for sterilizing M*A*S*H equipment. Marines routinely use coffee as an all-purpose boot treatment — first burning off any tar, gum, or flesh that may have seared into the leather — and then applying it with a tattered cravat as a finishing treatment. Dandy Air Force Flyboys have been known to use coffee to polish the buttons on their dress uniforms and make their flattops stand at attention.
An ROTC soldier who's out on maneuvers has been brainwashed to drink the coffee before him. Sure, he may appreciate a good cup of coffee, but Uncle Sam teaches a man to take what he gets and enjoy — er — make the best of it. A ROTC can stomach anything from a fine cup of Kenyan AA to cold battery acid, and he'll smile as it goes down. In short, the ROTC coffee drinker's palette has been broken like a workhorse.
You Might Be an ROTC Coffee Drinker If ...
- You shout Hoo-Yah! after a fine cup of coffee.
- You have ever killed for coffee after 6 a.m.
- You argue that coffee tastes better when brewed in an Army helmet.
The Teenager (a.k.a. Latte's R Us)
"Candy in a cup" is the motto for this sugar-crazed pimple producer. You may as well melt a chocolate bar, throw in some flavored syrup, top it off with half a can of aerosol whip cream and throw it in a Sippee cup for this kid. He'll buzz off the sugar and caffeine and feel grown up all at the same time. The Latte's R Us crowd will hang out in an all-night diner or coffee shop in droves just because it's so adult-like and never wonder why no adults want to be where they are.
How to Know if You're A Latte's R Us Kid:
- You dream of a brand of coffee produced by Hershey's.
- You've developed Carpal Tunnel symptoms from spooning sugar into your mug.
Researchers were somewhat surprised by the prevalence of coffee within Redneck subculture. Redneck coffee drinkers are easily identified within backwoods communities by the junked espresso machines on blocks in their front yards. At these sacred locations, deep in the woods behind the outhouse, Redneck barristas spend countless hours perfecting every batch of coffee that drips from their still. The typical Redneck coffee drinker drinks from a moonshine jar, and in a pinch will experiment with rabbit pellets if he runs out of coffee beans.
The Redneck is committed to his coffee and a huntin' trip doesn't lessen his desire for a fresh cup. When on the run, he'll filter it through the mesh in his John Deere cap, and use an STP can for a travel mug.
You Might Be a Redneck Coffee Drinker If ...
- You have a mug for a six-fingered hand.
- You store your teeth in Folgers overnight so they don't lose their color.
These findings are being hailed by medical journals as a "medical breakthrough" and "hope for America's future generations!" As a journalist, my hope is that for your sake, for the sake of those you love and for the future of our country these findings will bring about a new enlightenment in our midst. Coffee is too serious a socializing force to be ignored any longer.