What is your vice? Be honest, we all have a vice. Not all vices are illegal, threaten to shorten our life span’s, or increase our probability of serving jail time. My vice is caffeine, it is the one thing that I cannot go a day without consuming. As soon as I get out of bed in the morning, my quest for a hot cup of caffeine begins. My preferred method of ingesting caffeine is in the form of espresso, but in a pinch I will drink regular coffee to ease my caffeine craving. From the little about caffeine that I have shared this far, it may appear that I have only a dysfunctional relationship with caffeine, but there is more to my relationship with caffeine than merely an “itch” that needs to be scratched. Caffeine is sometimes the catalyst that motivates me to shoot off an e-mail, text, or tweet to someone I haven’t seen in ages, marrying my love for caffeine with my desire to reconnect with a friend. Without fail, the meet- up for coffee generally elicits a positive response, second only to the meet up for drinks.
Sitting next to or across from a friend who is enjoying caffeine along with me is akin to the times as a kid when I’d meet with a friend or two to enjoy an ice cream cone in the summer. Although I have drastically reduced my intake of the milky and sugary sweetness that is ice cream, as an adult, the anticipation of meeting up for a rich and robust cup of espresso parallels the thrill the ice cream meet- up once held in my life. Yet, the most exciting aspect of these meet- up’s were not the ice cream or the espresso but rather the chance to slow down and connect with beloved friends. Recently, I had the opportunity to reconnect with someone over caffeine. Connecting over caffeine is something this person and I did all the time when we worked together. One of the things that I knew I would miss desperately when she left work to start law school was our mid- afternoon caffeine jaunts. The aroma of coffee beans brewing and milk steaming was the back- drop to many a laugh, a gripe, and sometimes a tear. Whatever our particular mood was when we met- up for caffeine, by the end of our meeting, our spirits were lifted by the conversation and our batteries re-charged by the caffeine.
Assuming your vice isn’t something that would net you a prison term or a trip to the emergency room, I’d encourage you to find ways to incorporate your vice into your life in a way that includes time spent with friends and/or family. Personally, I can say that some of the best times I have spent with friends has been over caffeine, with caffeine ultimately taking a backseat to the love, laughter, tears, and joy shared with friends.