My new religion: Caffeine-ism

Upon getting to work today, I settled in, blotted myself with a paper towel, put my hair up and sat in silence for a few minutes to cool off and collect my thoughts. Five minutes later, I’m digging into my bag looking for spare change to buy some much needed coffee. To my chagrin, I find two quarters, and lots and lots of pennies. While there were a lot of Lincolns, I didn’t really want to either count nor hand the cashier at Cafe Metro a fistful of pennies.

It became multiple choice hour. I could a) got to the ATM and take out $$, b) suck it up until tomorrow and just overdose on coffee during FREE ICED COFFEE WEDNESDAYS at Starbucks, (I didn’t tell you?? I got another free coffee card!) or c) hmmm figure somethin’ out…

I chose b)–to stick it out until tomorrow because as soon as I get $$ in my hand, it’s gone. After just paying off two credit card bills and rent, I just didn’t feel like going to the ATM. Nope, nope. I was doing pretty well until about 2pm when I start to get a headache. DAMN YOU CAFFEINE ADDICTION!! I began to get panicky. I left my Advil in my other purse which was too big to carry in this heat, so what to do??

Trying to distract myself, I go on my favorite blog, La–dee–dah…Milant on 39th and 3rd serving gazpacho…chicken and BBQ postings…and then suddenly–there it was-


A new Joe the Art of Coffee was opening in the Gray Bar Passage of Grand Central–thee blocks from me. To celebrate their much awaited opening, from 4pm-6pm today was a “dress-rehearsal,” read: FREE GOODIES.

My eyes enlarge and I nod my head yes. It has been decided. The coffee gods like me apparently. I will deal with my headache until 4pm when I will skip into my elevator and ride down to coffee paradise.

My walk quickens as I get closer. I see the Graybar entrance and my heart skips. I get inside and scan for the place. About 50 feet ahead of me, a short line has formed of people pacing and hopping from one foot to the next. In my experience, this is such the site of a free food line. Antsy, antsy people looking around at what people in front of them are getting, trying to figure out how much free stuff they can score. I had a man behind me ask me about 50 times what we could get. Is this the line for free coffee? Is it free tea? Free chai? Free muffins? Dude, just wait and see, I told him. I was alarmingly calm while others who weren’t sure about the free deal but curious about the line kept sticking their faces against the glass to try and figure out what was going on. I do not have a good history for waiting in food lines, but my addiction was my cause.

I get up to the counter to learn that anything on the coffee menu and any snack was free. I order a LARGE iced latte and, what the hell, get a blueberry scone. I hold my scone in a folded white paper back and wait patiently for my coffee. Some guy of course grabs the first iced latte he sees and takes a gulp, but then he feels dumb when the next drink actually has his name on it and realizes he stole mine. He apologizes and then smiles; I let it go because he was sort of eye-candy. Giggle.

Within ten minutes, I go from bitter and achey to happy with a buzz from caffeine and free food goodness. I get back to my desk and chow down. The iced latte was amazing–really really good. The scone was disappointingly dense and lacked much flavor, so I picked the blueberries out of it. Someone needs to rehearse a bit more on the scones. Here’s me a little too excited:

All in all, it was a good day. I said it once and I’ll say it again, but thank you!!!

PS: I also scored lots of Splenda!!!

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