A Confession

Something weird is happening to me, and I'm none too pleased about it. It's taken about a week for me to really start to do some self-evaluation and crisis control, and I think the first step is to admit that I have a problem.

You guys, I've been having a really hard time drinking coffee lately.

Not because the love affair is over, not because I'm suddenly health-conscious, not out of concern for the whiteness of my teeth, but because, well, out of absolutely nowhere, caffeine is making me feel really funny and awful. Dizziness, nausea, restlessness -- for heaven's sake, I sound like a TV ad for a prescription medication here. But it's true. And it's terrible.

I hadn't had a full serving of coffee for just about the past six days. Three days ago, I tried desperately and in vain to finish a delightfully velvety macchiato I'd worked up the nerve to order at Cafe Grumpy, but to no avail.

So yesterday, I was on a mission. I will not brook this kind of physical discomfort, and I'll be darned if I'm giving up on coffee. I had an easy morning, started out with some mild tea, ate a hearty breakfast and a moderate lunch, and set out to jive myself out on some joe.

The baristas at the new annex of Ninth Street Espresso (E 13th St between 3rd and 4th) were happy to oblige.

New Ninth Street

I could not have been more pleased to see the shots laid out before me.


But what will happen? I wondered. Will I never drink enjoy espresso the way I used to? Say it ain't so!

Eh, it's almost not so.


I downed the shot in about six seconds, and I didn't start feeling bad for, oh, forty minutes or so -- which is a staggering development in the wake of the insta-discomfort that I was becoming >gulp< used to. In fact, I was feeling so confident that I swung by the 13th St. Joe and threw back another one.

Joe 'spresso

A marked improvement, but still not 100%. And with that, I think it's time to make a doctor's appointment. Stay tuned...