Fruit from Africa
French kissed by fire and heat
My morning delight
I’ve had a love affair with coffee for over 15 years. We met in passing while I was in middle school and became more acquainted as I prepared for my AP exams in high school. By the time grad school came around, we were inseparable and have been together ever since. My love for coffee inspired me to write the haiku above. It is dedicated to my loyal Keurig coffee maker that unceremoniously passed away this morning.
To celebrate the pending arrival of my new coffee maker, I’ve compiled a list of interesting facts about coffee: 1. Tea was more popular than coffee in America until King George the III’s Stamp Act of 1767 increased taxes. The result was the Boston Tea Party, a rebellion in which Bostonians dumped the British East India tea cargos into a harbor. From that point, coffee became America’s national drink and was emotionally linked with its revolution. 2. Besides Americans, the two other largest drinkers of coffee are the French and the Germans. These three countries drink approximately 65% of the total coffee consumed in the world. 3. One third of the tap water used for drinking in North America is used to brew daily cups of coffee. 4. Light roast coffee has more caffeine that dark roast coffee. The longer coffee is roasted, the more caffeine is cooked from the bean. 5. Starbucks coffee shops use over 93 million gallons of milk per year. This would be enough to fill 155 Olympic-sized swimming pools. They also use 2.3 billion paper cups annually 6. According to legend, coffee was discovered in the 9th century when an Ethiopian goat herder named Khaldi noticed that his normally lethargic goats were more excitable after they had nibbled the red berries from an evergreen tree. Khaldi took the berries to a Muslim holy man, who turned the raw fruit of the coffee tree into the delicious beverage.
“…it was at Starbucks when it occurred to me that to drink a mocha is to gulp down the entire history of the New World. From the Spanish exportation of Aztec cacao, and the Dutch invention of the chemical process for making cocoa, on down to the capitalist empire of Hershey, PA, and the lifestyle marketing of Seattle’s Starbucks, the modern mocha is a bittersweet concoction of imperialism, genocide, invention, and consumerism served with whipped cream on top.” – Sarah Vowell