Posted by: Kennedy | January 15, 2011

My love affair with coffee

My love affair with coffee started 13 years ago. I was in grade 7 when I had my first taste of a French vanilla cappuccino, and I thought it was divine.

This was back before my town had a Tim Horton’s (and Starbucks? Forget it), so my friends and I would visit the now-long-gone Mrs. D’s coffee shop down the street. We’d order fries and French vanillas – this was back when I was a stick and never thought about what I put in my body. But I digress…

Once Mrs. D’s disappeared, I started asking my mom to buy the make-it-yourself individual packets of flavoured cappuccino from the grocery store. Somehow, she agreed. This, from a woman who rarely bought us junk food. I begged and begged for her to buy us Dunkaroos to bring to school for lunch, but all I ever got were the ‘healthy’ granola bars. You know, the ones without the chocolate coating. They were gross. But now that I think of it, so was dipping a sugary cookie shaped like a dinosaur into a glob of vanilla icing with food colouring in it. Just wrong.

Anyway – back to the cappuccino. I tried making it at home and it just wasn’t the same. No wonder – I was making instant coffee with tap water. It was watery, tasteless and just downright unappealing. In my desperation, I eventually gave brewed coffee a try, adding loads of cream and sugar. I still hated it.

So coffee and I called it quits for a while. Probably a good thing since I was only 13 and hadn’t hit my growth spurt yet. But a few years later, Clinton officially moved up in the world by opening its first – and only – Tim’s. Now I was just a 10-minute walk away from my beloved French vanillas. The relationship was back on.

Years later, I was still drinking these uber-sweet beverages. When I started university, I was getting one almost daily. When I think back to that, it almost makes me sick. So much sugar and cream. And if that weren’t enough, half the time I would get a maple pecan Danish to go with it! For shame…

Something happened when I started working my big-girl job back in 2007. My tastes started to change and my usual was starting to seem overwhelmingly sweet. Not sure if it was my Starbucks-loving coworkers, or the fact that sometimes we got free brewed coffee at meetings, but I started to realize that regular coffee wasn’t all bad.

My cappuccinos turned into double-doubles. Then I swapped the cream for milk. Then one day, that tasted like syrup so I cut back to one sugar.

My current Tim Horton’s order is a large coffee with two milks and half of one sugar – though my goal this year is to make a simple switch to no sugar at all. At Starbucks, I go for a non-fat latte with no sugar added. About once per season I’ll order the specialty drinks a la Pumpkin Spice or Gingerbread lattes. While delicious, they taste insanely sweet and, even whilst foregoing the whipped cream topping, I cannot for the life of me finish a grande.

There’s just something so soothing about a cup of joe. It makes my morning. It’s not just the taste. It’s the warmth. It’s the pure joy of holding the cup in one mittened hand while trekking down the street. Or pouring a big mug out of the coffee pot at home on a lazy Saturday morning and reading the paper. Pure and utter bliss.

I’ve read up on both the benefits and harmful effects of coffee. Everything is conflicting. Yes, it’s caffeine. Yes, it’s a stimulant. Yes, it probably isn’t the healthiest thing to get me going in the morning. Yes, I’m addicted and it feels like I need it to function. No, this probably isn’t a great thing. But I try to limit it to one per day – and I get my antioxidants and other nutrients from my food.

I’ll probably learn something in school that will change my mind about coffee. But for now, I’m blissfully ignorant. And I like it that way.



  1. anything in moderation is the key. Go ahead, enjoy your coffee!

  2. yeah i’m addicted to coffee smh.. hmm i want to try a cup of joe lol 😉

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