print upholstery grade fabric
some chocolate might be nice too ... yes we'll still wait for you ... what choice do we have anyway ?
Life is Good and Better with Coffee
by Bonnie Jacobs Mastro
Before the sun rises, the tantalizing scent of coffee begins
to permeate through the brain fog of recent sleep, waving through me like an elixir
of the gods, filling me with anticipation in the beginning of a new day. What is
it about this exalted, slightly bitter liquid that seems to make us hum and helps
create a positive productive attitude towards our daily tasks?
Some claim they only drink coffee for the cream and sugar, creating a sweet need for speed as they down their third or fourth cup of the day. Others won’t touch it unless it is heavy and black, studiously avoiding the calories attached to making your morning coffee your morning dessert as well. These practical souls utilize its ability to sharpen our brains while appreciating the finer subtleties of flavor that reside in the initial bitterness flowing into a cacophony of undertones. Many drink it, whether sugared, creamed or plain, as the daily supply of industrious energy that they utilize in the production of both creative thought and mundane tasking.
No matter how you enjoy your coffee, entire chains of coffee stores and coffee houses now wait to fulfill your personal needs on a daily basis throughout the world. Thousands of coffee pots throughout homes percolate merrily in the early hours to propel their owners through their daily lives. My personal coffeemaker happens to sound like a jet engine revving up before takeoff as it grinds my favorite bean which means I have to wait until everyone else is up in order for my highly anticipated fresh cup of coffee to be made available. This leads me to seek alternatives on occasion as the tea kettle is easily quieted but leaves me with a desire to set the cat loose in the bedroom as I am a very early riser in a house of late morning bloomers.
So today, I wonder, how did we get so dependent on this little bean that seems to fuel our entire planet with the energy it needs to operate in our modern society? Where did it all start? How can there be any tea drinkers left in the world?
Early in my life, I learned about serotonin and its effect
on the brain. Serotonin is a chemical that is produced in the brain slowing dripping
into receptors that, when these receptors are filled, we get sleepy. Caffeine, the
chemical found in coffee beans, is the chemical that can replace serotonin in its
receptors, which, makes the body produce MORE serotonin. Now if you know anything
about serotonin, it is a good thing, right? Serotonin is responsible for your happy
mood, your positive outlook on life and when it is missing, the grumpy and ill tempered
human is not the same as the one that woke up brimming with a positive attitude.
So, when the caffeine hits your serotonin receptors, what does the body do? It builds more receptors! Right then and there, you now have even more serotonin dripping down into these new receptors as the race is on to see which chemical will win, no matter what the rest of your body thinks about it. This is a good thing, right? Well…..just as long as the caffeine intake remains available and the same amount is administered daily, then the serotonin receptors remain stable and all is right in your brain that has stabilized the invader and actually made it a friend. And you get the added benefit of a sharper, quicker and more adaptable mind to aid you in your daily routine.
Doctors, recognizing our longstanding inability to moderate ourselves, determined that many people were suffering from side effects from too much caffeine intake and began to blaspheme against the world’s favorite beverage by turning it into ‘a bad thing’ because of its association with illness and disease, which was understandable. But there were so many factors that were not being considered in the studies, such as, what went along with that favorite cup of java. The first cigarette of the day was instant Bliss with coffee - guaranteed. Coffee breaks with pastries are to die for- literally.
Since patents can’t be made on anything produced in nature, this was a problem for the coffee sellers, to prevent competition selling the magical elixir beans so they had to add a chemical to it in order to make it their own ‘brand’. Fungicides are popular in cheaper coffee brands, as coffee will mold and we can’t detect it easily. There are more expensive processes now developed that add to the cost of the coffee but can ensure us against this, which is why we see such a variance in pricing. Now many companies, who don’t want to go the chemical route, get their patents based on their method of processing the bean, rather than added ingredients.
The function of coffee is also social, as meeting a friend for coffee is much more likely to have a positive outcome than meeting them for a drink but the effects of coffee can keep a person tossing and turning for hours if drunk too late in the day. Sadly for some, it must remain a morning beverage, relegated to our breakfast meetings and early morning ponderings as we contemplate our day.
Yet most coffee chains have discovered that sale of decaf coffees escalate during the afternoon hours and some coffee houses (yes, they still exist!) retain patronage with a wide variety of flavors that have been defanged. Decaffeinated coffee is a relatively new invention and has evolved as our knowledge and understanding of our physical bodies and the effects of chemicals on ourselves is being uncovered. Sadly, decaf got a bad reputation as the earlier brands were chemically processed, leaving not only a bad taste but also a potential health hazard in its brew. Today’s water processed decaffeination procedures are much safer and of course, more expensive but a healthier alternative while making a wonderful evening drink for the chemically sensitive- or is it smarter?- consumer.
Researchers have now done an about- face on its consideration of many food elements that have been declared “BAD” and have discovered positive elements with much of what was labeled with a skull and crossbones. Moderation, that lovely discipline that allows us to enjoy so much in life without terrible consequences, seems to be the key to enjoying this life to the fullest. We are now told that a certain amount of coffee does exactly the opposite of what we were once told! No longer considered a leading cause of heart disease, now we are told, in moderation, it is good for the heart, and that coffee drinkers seem to have lower incidences of life threatening events.
So as I finish my morning cup of coffee, I anticipate my mid- morning break and snack, when I indulge myself in two of my favorite treats- my second cup of coffee with a piece of dark chocolate, both rescued from the prohibited list and now shining stars for helping us with heart disease, depression and other ills. But in spite of all my knowledge of the science behind food, I simply wish to take a few minutes to relax into one of life’s most pleasant and popular indulgences and remember that Life is Good- and better with Coffee.
Here is an example of a swivel bar stool using our coffee shop fabric on the upholstered seat. We like it with the coffee themed metal motif back on the stools. This wrought iron piece was hand made in the USA by Grace Collection.