Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

quote- John Green on coffee January 12, 2014

Filed under: Quotations — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:08 pm
Tags: , ,

Colin didn’t like coffee.  He liked the idea of coffee quite a lot–a warm drink that gave you energy and had been for centuries associated with sophisticates and intellectuals.  But coffee itself tasted to him like caffeinated stomach bile.

John Green in An Abundance of Katherines. p. 11

I also like the rest of the paragraph, from which I lifted the quote.  It conveys the tone of the protagonist, Colin, who has just broken up with his 19th girlfriend, each named Katherine.

 “He did an end-around on the unfortunate taste by drowning his java in cream, for which Katherine gently teased him that afternoon.  It rather goes without saying that Katherine drank her coffee black.  Katherines do, generally.  They like the coffee like they like their ex-boyfriends: bitter.”

Colin expresses my feeling about coffee.  I started drinking it at the Calico House in Kelowna, after young people’s events when I was about 17.  We’d gather around the table,  wanting to continue in each other’s company, solving the problems of the world, planning our futures, having fun.  Calico House put a pitcher of coffee at the table.  Inevitably, it ended up in my cup.

I don’t really like it, and I do not do well with caffeine.  I had a cup of 2/3 hot chocolate 1/3 coffee at 4:00 on Friday, and I was up until 3 a.m. (and completely unaware of the time.  It felt like 9 to me).   Most days, I drink either hot chocolate (Carnation, preferably) mixed with some Ovaltine or an herbal tea with honey.  This time of year, a hot beverage is a great comfort.

How about you?  Do you drink coffee?  What is your beverage of choice?


30 Responses to “quote- John Green on coffee”

  1. Gavin Says:

    I don’t generally enjoy coffee straight. I drink two thirds cafe mocha (basically hot chocolate with a bit of coffee) and one third Sumatran Reserve (a rich, dark coffee). We have a Keurig Coffee Maker at my house so there is a lot of coffee consumed here.

  2. matthewexeter Says:

    They’re having a go at fruit juice now. Sayings it’s evil like coca cola. It has upset me

  3. Laurie Says:

    Very timely post: I just wrote a poem about coffee….my love for coffee…yesterday! I really enjoy the taste of coffee in the morning. However, I sometimes move on to Earl Grey in the afternoon.

  4. meecha vatwe Says:

    Personally, I love coffee. I don’t know what I would do without it. But like wine, it was an acquired taste for me. But like Colin, I liked the idea of it before I liked the reality of it… as I can say about many things in my life. Good quote. Thanks for sharing =)

  5. No. I’m not a coffee drinker. Smells nice but tastes awful. I stick with Green Tea or Chamomile tea. Like you I can’t take the caffeine. I also have to stay away from soda. These drinks upset my stomach. I too love Hot Chocolate but I stick with the herbal teas. Much healthier and easier on the tummy.

  6. I have given up coffee for the new year. Not drank a cup so far in January. My sleep has been much better, deeper sleep and less restless. I like the taste of coffee, and I think in moderation it can be helpful for energy, but I always tend to overdo it till I lose the effect and benefit, so I am sticking to tea now!

    • Good luck! When we’re in the US, I’m astonished at how much caffeine is added to beverages. I don’t understand it. Like Mountain Dew, for example. In Canada, only cola pop (soda) is allowed to be caffeinated, and root beer isn’t.

      • Thank you, yes there are a lot of caffeinated drinks here in the UK too. Loads of brands of energy drinks, like red bull, monster, etc.. I used to drink them and cola, I stopped them about a month or so ago, so I suppose stopping coffee was the obvious next step. I can understand why the odd boost from it would be beneficial, but if you drink it regularly I think you lose that benefit. So it is more an addiction than anything else.

      • Yes, I agree. We have a ‘No Energy Drinks” policy at our high school. Kids still sneak them in, but it’s a good concept. (Some us do find it hypocritical that coffee IS allowed, for both staff and students).

  7. masterbias Says:

    Never after 3pm. 🙂

  8. kiwiskan Says:

    Coffee or tea – depends how I’m feeling

  9. robertsonwrites Says:

    I’ve drunk more coffee in the past month than I had in the year prior. 😀

    • Has that been a positive or a negative thing? Or does it just make you feel more writerly? I notice there are a lot of writer mugs/buttons that talk about writers being fueled by coffee.

      • robertsonwrites Says:

        It’s been positive, mainly because I write late at night after working all day. It keeps me awake and my mind sharp. Probably not healthy though.

      • Are you able to go to sleep? If I have coffee in the afternoon, I’m NOT sleeping. I might be exhausted, but I’ll lie, brain racing, unable to sleep. Since I have to be up at 7:30 for work, that is a problem. In the summer, when I’m up to 4 a.m. writing and sleep until noon, it’s not such a problem.

      • robertsonwrites Says:

        I get up around 530 or 6 am and go to bed between 1 and 3 am depending on how writing is going. I sleep fairly well for 3 to 4 hours a night.

      • Yikes. I couldn’t function more than 2 or 3 days with that little sleep.

      • robertsonwrites Says:

        I have grown somewhat accustomed to it since I was younger, although there are days that I have to sleep 7 hours to feel completely rested. I rarely need much sleep to function.

      • Wow. I could use those extra 4 hours every day. Lucky you.

  10. edgarone2 Says:

    I drink coffee, black. Only one cup a day.When I attend meetings I drink more than one cup.

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